Need Lean Muscle, 5 Month Plateau

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    Need Lean Muscle, 5 Month Plateau


    Ok I have been looking around at the bulking topics and still feel the need to ask this myself. I'm 20 years old, 6'4 and weigh 200 lbs, been lifting for about 4 years now (started around 145). I have tried many different supplements and weight gainers and different diets and they really have worked, hence the 55 lb gain. Since I got to college (freshman now) I workout 5 days a week, with 3 days of 20 min cardio and 3 days of abs. I really want to gain weight but its important to me to stay lean. I have been stuck at 200 for about 6 months now. I feel bigger and stronger but my gains have really slowed lately.

    Right now I take CM, protein (4-5 shakes a day), BCAA pills, and glutamine. With the creatine I can get to around 210 but as soon as I get off I lose the water weight and end up right where I left off... 200 lb. My diet is pretty clean, I eat lots of tuna and chicken breast, couple of eggs and oatmeal for breakfast, 2 bowls of spinach leaves a day, broccoli and other vegetables regularly, and some fruit every day. It's very important to me to stay lean and cut up, but I really want to bulk some. I've been lean and had abs pretty much my whole life but this plateau is just killing me.

    Can I bulk up without changing my diet to way more fattening foods?????

    At first I thought I was impatient and just needed to keep working hard, but after 6 months of solid workouts (with a few 4-5 day complete layoffs for recovery) I feel like I should make more gains than I have.

    Ok, time for the bottom line... Am I maxed at my potential and should start looking at pro hormones or something else? (At only 20 yrs old this scares me a little)

    Any help would be great, I'm no expert at this stuff so please no hatred. I just love to lift and nothing is more motivating than tangible gains. Thanks.

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    sure u can bulk up without changing your diet, just one thing. eat more of it. eveyone asks how to bulk up, the answer is eat. if u dont wanna gain fat, eat MORE of your leaner foods you have. post ur average 1 day meal plan and ur training
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    Breakfast: 3 Eggs, oatmeal, maybe fat free yogurt and a protein shake
    Lunch: 2 Chicken Breasts, spinach salad, fruit, broccoli
    Snack: 2 cans of Tuna
    Dinner: 2 Chicken breasts, salad, fruit, random vegetable
    Snack: Whole Grain cereal
    Occasional PB&J before bed


    Generally workout for 50-75 mins 5-6 days a week.
    Chest and Bicep day
    Shoulders back and tricep day
    Leg/core day
    Then rest a day and repeat
    Cardio usually 15-20 mins 3 days a week whenever I have time allowed after a workout
    Core/abs 2-3 days a week

    The diet might vary a little on different days but I stick with that generally, gets pretty boring but it's not too hard to get used to. Thanks for the help
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    If you want to grow, you have to eat MORE calories. You're lacking big time in the carb and fat department. You have to sacrafice a little bit of BF% to get big, it's just science. You have to create a calorie surplus to gain weight, which includes a little bit of fat. Getting big and lean at the same time is an oxymoron. You need some milk, eggs, steak, more peanut butter, etc. in this diet. Throw in a cheeseburger and some pizza here and there. I would also suggest cutting your training down to four days/week. You are definitely not eating enough to support training everything twice a week. You're not allowing yourself anytime to recover. You're definitely going to have to eat more though.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdilliner View Post
    Breakfast: 3 Eggs, oatmeal, maybe fat free yogurt and a protein shake
    Lunch: 2 Chicken Breasts, spinach salad, fruit, broccoli
    Snack: 2 cans of Tuna
    Dinner: 2 Chicken breasts, salad, fruit, random vegetable
    Snack: Whole Grain cereal
    Occasional PB&J before bed


    Generally workout for 50-75 mins 5-6 days a week.
    Chest and Bicep day
    Shoulders back and tricep day
    Leg/core day
    Then rest a day and repeat
    Cardio usually 15-20 mins 3 days a week whenever I have time allowed after a workout
    Core/abs 2-3 days a week

    The diet might vary a little on different days but I stick with that generally, gets pretty boring but it's not too hard to get used to. Thanks for the help
    First, don't get stuck up on a little plateau, it's going to happen, it happens to everyone. I had been stuck for almost a year before (I benched 215 for the whole year), and I just stuck with it, alternated routines, added cals, and since then I've made huge progress (now two years later and I'm at 360!, and all my others lifts have done the same)

    Now, at 200lbs, that's not enough cals, and you really should attemt to get more good fats in your diet, pick up some omega-3 caps ($35 at NP for 1000caps)

    If your trying to bulk, I'd shoot for 5 meals a day 50-60G protein in each, fats and carbs though really need to be adjusted based on how your body responds to them. If you have a faster metabolism and can eat higher carbs without gaining too much fat, do it! Add 3/4C oatmeal to breakfast, pre, and post workout. Also eat before bed! I always eat a full meal before bed, think about it, you wont be eating for another 8ish hours! Although I've never done it, some people even go as far as to wake up in the middle of the night for a shake.

    Also, this probably goes against what your thinking right now, but you may benefit from dropping a day of training, My brother has worked with a few pro BB trainers, and they've both told him that they have only met a few top athletes that have the genetics to strength train 5 days a week and still recover, naturally. I would switch to either a Mon-Wed-Fri, Mon-Tue,Thur-Fri, or Every other day routine.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironhyde View Post
    If you want to grow, you have to eat MORE calories. You're lacking big time in the carb and fat department. You have to sacrafice a little bit of BF% to get big, it's just science. You have to create a calorie surplus to gain weight, which includes a little bit of fat. Getting big and lean at the same time is an oxymoron. You need some milk, eggs, steak, more peanut butter, etc. in this diet. Throw in a cheeseburger and some pizza here and there. I would also suggest cutting your training down to four days/week. You are definitely not eating enough to support training everything twice a week. You're not allowing yourself anytime to recover. You're definitely going to have to eat more though.
    I missed this, but basically, what he said! ha. The burger/pizza idea isn't bad, but don't get hooked! Have a cheat meal a few times a month, and if your worried about gaining fat, ditch the late night cereal, and especially the late night PB&J, insulin spikes before before really wont be beneficial if your attempting to stay lean, and bulk.
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    Definitely some good feedback, thanks guys. I'll make some changes and probably hit this thread again in a few months, hopefully a few pounds heavier = D.


    That said, what are some of the more "lean" foods I could eat to gain weight? I know guys that just eat a **** ton of whatever then try and cut later, but I'd like to avoid that. Seems like I saw Peanut butter and Oatmeal was a concensus, any other ideas? Whole milk? Fish? Rice maybe? I don't know much about the diet side of training, which I'm starting to learn is about as important as what you do in the gym.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdilliner View Post
    Definitely some good feedback, thanks guys. I'll make some changes and probably hit this thread again in a few months, hopefully a few pounds heavier = D.


    That said, what are some of the more "lean" foods I could eat to gain weight? I know guys that just eat a **** ton of whatever then try and cut later, but I'd like to avoid that. Seems like I saw Peanut butter and Oatmeal was a concensus, any other ideas? Whole milk? Fish? Rice maybe? I don't know much about the diet side of training, which I'm starting to learn is about as important as what you do in the gym.
    I, and I believe most here would agree, say that diet is MORE important than what you do in the gym. If diet is not in order, your gains will be minimal and come very hard.

    Your stats say you're 6'4 and 200lbs. Suffice it to say you're probably pretty lean, and getting fat isn't exactly in your genetic predisposition, as it isn't in mine. Unless you have found that you gain fat quickly, I would not pay quite as much attention to "lean foods." And a little bit of water over the abs doesn't count as getting fat. If my abs aren't a bit blurry, I know I'm not eating enough to gain. I can tell you from my personal experience, throwing in a crap meal a day is an excellent way to get your overall calories up. If that's a large pizza, a Taco Bell run, a double cheeseburger, or whatever, that's great. Just make sure it's something that is calorie and nutrient dense. If I tried to get all my calories from chicken and vegetables, I'd never gain.
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    Google "HST" (hypertrophic- specific -Training), which is all about creating muscle confusing and preventing muscle adaptation; which can occur within as little 2-3 works using the same weight. I seriously urge you research HST style training; which is easily customizable to suit your needs. Brain has got muscle growth and preventing muscle adaptation down to a science.

    Thanks,
    Sprt
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    Quote Originally Posted by SprtNvolcoM View Post
    Google "HST" (hypertrophic- specific -Training), which is all about creating muscle confusing and preventing muscle adaptation; which can occur within as little 2-3 works using the same weight. I seriously urge you research HST style training; which is easily customizable to suit your needs. Brain has got muscle growth and preventing muscle adaptation down to a science.

    Thanks,
    Sprt
    That is what P90X basically is right? Do you think its better to go to the gym doing your own WO or getting some home weights and doing P90X?
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreshlyBlend View Post
    That is what P90X basically is right? Do you think its better to go to the gym doing your own WO or getting some home weights and doing P90X?
    P90X is similar (in regard to muscle confusion for instance), but the overall concept of HST compared to P90X are a little different. I'm currently dabbling with the P90X myself and it is no joke.

    HST is something you would want to use in the gym. P90X is something you would do at home; without all the weights and equipment. Goals, however, overall when comparing the two are completely different. Although you can customize HST workouts suit your needs (i.e., weight loss, strength gains, LBM gain, ect).

    I like to use it when I attempt body recomps; I say attempt because recomps are very hard to accomplish and very few are able to do so. However, the customization and flexibility of HST allows users to achieve their goals in the most efficient and productive manner, IMO. That and logically speaking ... it makes perfect sense (the science behind it is undeniable) - anyone who understands the mechanism utilized by the body to promote LBM growth will tell you the same. Brian Hay**** (I believe his name is - the mind behind the concept/program) has Hypertrophy down to a science. The results I have seen while using HST compared to any other training programs are unarguably the best I've experienced. Hands down.

    P90X has its place, however. I'm not going to knock it. It's hardcore. If done right, you'll see results like they show in the testimonials. It would not be my first choice in terms of bulking up though. It would be one of my TOP choices in terms of cutting BF and maintaining LBM (even gaining some LBM due tot he different movements Tony utilizes - movements almost always over looked and rarely done). In a perfect work, I would do P90X in the AM, and HST in the PM; of course in order to do something like this one would have to use very low volume because of the higher frequency. That said, due to HST's flexibility and customization and AM/PM regimen using both training styles would be possible.

    Thanks,
    Sprt
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    Sorry ... to answer you question: results can be achieved at home and in the gym, but I always perfer going to the gym verses working out at home. As mentioned, however, I would tend to use P90X as more of a cardio/high intensity aerobic routine rather than using it to gain LBM. P90X is more of the type of training one would use to get "FIT" or back in shape, it seems. I could be wrong ... Like I said I'm only dabbling with P90X and still havenít fully wrapped it's concepts around my head as of yet. So I could be wrong in thinking it's not the type of routine that is capable of building mass; it just doesnít seem like that type of program at first glance.

    Remember, preventing muscle adaptation and promoting muscle growth does not take heavy weights - people forget that itís all about the degree of stress you place on the worked muscle along with adequate rest and diet that aids in muscle growth; along with many other factors. One thing comes to mind is the guys in the gym you see straining, heaving, and tossing insanely heavy loads believing that just because their moving heavy loads their going to build muscle. lol, It's so annoying ... if they would just lower the amount of weight and improved on form, they can achieve the same results if not better results in terms of muscle growth.

    Again ... thanks,
    Sprt
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    yesterday was my day 1 on hst. i thought i wouldnt be sore cause ur only doing 2 sets max on a workout machine or w/e. man was i wrong! my whole body was sore. cant wait to hit the gym 2omorrow
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    try mixing up doing high reps one day low reps one day you might be suprised
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    Quote Originally Posted by R1balla View Post
    yesterday was my day 1 on hst. i thought i wouldnt be sore cause ur only doing 2 sets max on a workout machine or w/e. man was i wrong! my whole body was sore. cant wait to hit the gym 2omorrow
    One thing to remember, is that you dont max out every workout - you just need to find your max loads on which ever movements you decide to use during this cycle. Your not going to be maxing out every workout though.

    I'll see if I can find the official HST site/forum; which has a ton of information you will find extremely usfull in understanding what the training program is all about. I'm posative a google for "Bryan Hay****" will yield his web site and the HST forums.

    I'll post again once I find the link.
    Sprt
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    I'm about to go research HST as I type this, thanks for the suggestion. As far as me putting on weight goes, I'm up to 207 in only 10 days. Seems like a huge gain but I can't find an ounce of fat on me and I feel as strong as I ever have. Just got some creatine in the mail and I'm going to start that, but I've just turned up my protein intake to about a gram/lb and tried to eat constantly. Still eating pretty clean, but I've thrown in a crap meal or two.

    Thanks again for the help and I'll keep updating as far as progress.



    EDIT: I found the official HST website and I admit it does sound good and makes definite sense but I can't really find a place telling me exactly how it's down and how to apply it to my workouts. Any help? What am I missing?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdilliner View Post
    I'm about to go research HST as I type this, thanks for the suggestion. As far as me putting on weight goes, I'm up to 207 in only 10 days. Seems like a huge gain but I can't find an ounce of fat on me and I feel as strong as I ever have. Just got some creatine in the mail and I'm going to start that, but I've just turned up my protein intake to about a gram/lb and tried to eat constantly. Still eating pretty clean, but I've thrown in a crap meal or two.

    Thanks again for the help and I'll keep updating as far as progress.



    EDIT: I found the official HST website and I admit it does sound good and makes definite sense but I can't really find a place telling me exactly how it's down and how to apply it to my workouts. Any help? What am I missing?
    It's customizable ... but PM me and ill help you work something out and share with you what has worked for me.

    Sprt
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