Weight Training Questions - I Want To Bulk Up
and Gain Weight
Weight Training Question:
Right now I'm basically trying to "bulk up" and gain
around 15 pounds before I start toning up, and I'm not quite sure
I'm doing the right thing. As a skinny person, I do realize I have
a fast metabolism and never pictured myself as a "chubby"
person. In one of your articles, you suggested that I include one
cardio workout in my daily routine and I realize that it might stop
me from gaining weight. In fact, it might help me burn the fat I
have right now.
Last year I had 22% body fat and I'm pretty sure that it has increased
over time but I'm still about the same weight (145 pounds)t. Should
I include cardiovascular workouts and tone down at the same time
or should I wait to get bigger first and then start doing more cardio
workouts to work on my definition?
Another concern I had was the excessive candies and chocolates
and ice cream that I eat. Surely, if I decide not to eat those foods,
I can certainly put it to a stop. It really isn't that much of a
big deal but I was wondering if it does indeed stop me from getting
bigger and gaining more muscle, strength and weight?
Weight Training Answer:
With your body type, I really don't recommend "bulking
up" before trimming down (cutting). The reason is because when
someone tries to gain mass, they usually pack on a substantial amount
of body fat during the process. Then, when it comes time to trim
down (cut up), they end up needing to really restrict their calorie
levels and increase their cardio to rid themselves of the excess
fat. This turns into a nightmare, because their body's metabolism
slows way down and they end up losing some precious muscle mass
in the process.
I recommend adding high intensity cardio sessions to your overall
fitness plan. These cardio sessions should consist of explosive
movements such as sprinting, jumping rope or spinning on a stationary
bike. Make sure you're training at about 85% output and really push
yourself through the workout. Limit each of these cardio sessions
to 20 minutes max. Your goal is to hit it hard and fast, then give
your body time to recover. You will want to do cardio about 3-4
times per week.
Along with cardio, make sure to weight train with very high intensity
also. Your muscles will only grow when they're being overloaded,
so make sure to always focus on increasing the amount of weight
per exercise and taking every set (after warm-up) to positive failure.
By combining a high intensity weight training routine with a high
intensity cardio program, you will be hitting it from every angle
and your body will drop fat and build quality muscle mass. A great
way to track your progress is by using our exercise journals here:
In terms of your diet, I really can't stress enough how important
it is to eat a clean diet that excludes all empty calories such
at candies, chocolates and ice cream. These sweet/sugary foods are
the worst for you because they contain large amounts of sugar which
causes your insulin levels to go crazy. You end up packing on unwanted
body fat and always become hungrier and hungrier. If you're truly
serious about making substantial changes in your physique, you really
need to focus on cutting these "cheat foods" out of your
diet. Stick with a lean protein and non-starchy carbs. A great meal
would be a grilled chicken breast salad with romaine lettuce, sliced
cucumbers and a little balsamic vinaigrette dressing. You could
also opt for a nice chicken breast and veggie stir fry. Throw some
broccoli, mushrooms and chicken into a stir fry pan with a touch
of soy sauce.
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