How much muscle?

HypertrophyCoach Joe Bennett Forums Nutrition How much muscle?

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  • #58795
    Chris Morgan
    Participant

    I’ve got several questions here that I’ve had rolling around in my head for a few years and the internet always says different things so it’s hard to get even a somewhat definitive answer on them. Here they are, rapid fire:

    1. How much muscle can I gain naturally? I’ve seen calculators, not sure if they’re accurate or if this is even a question that can be answered. Not sure if this matters but I’m 6’2, 240 lbs, %20 body fat, 7.25 inch wrists, 10.5 inch ankles. I only include that information because that is what the calculators ask for 🤷🏻‍♂️.

    2. Different in growth between natural and enhanced athletes. How much faster can you add tissue as an enhanced athlete?

    3. Downsides to being a natural athlete? Downsides to being an enhanced athlete?

    4. Do you have to go through bulking and then cutting phases or can you stay lean and grow mass at the same time? For me at 20% body fat, do I really need to have a “bulking” phase where I eat more, or will my body use the extra fat as fuel while I’m gaining muscle mass?

    5. Medically, I have to follow a 18-6 IF routine every day and an almost keto diet (doctors orders, for the time being). How will that impact my progress, in your experience?

    6. Opinions on supplements. If I’m eating enough and my diet is balanced, do I really need supplements?

    That’s a start. I’m sure I’ll have more. Thanks man.

    #58924
    Joe
    Keymaster
    #58965
    Chris Morgan
    Participant

    Really appreciate that response Joe. Makes a lot of sense. The first few questions were mostly curiosity and then also a reality check for me. Totally agree I shouldn’t compare myself to others.

    To answer “why am I doing this?”
    1. I love the process.
    2. I want to get the strongest I can naturally while still maintaining functionality.
    3. I’m doing this for myself and family, not for a competition or anything.
    4. It enhances my overall well-being, not just physically, but emotionally, mentally and spiritually. My days suck without a good workout.
    5. I like to push others to be better in all areas of life, and this plays into that as well.

    To see where I’m coming from with the questions, I’ll say this: I’ll be remaining natural permanently. I’ve been told in the past to pick an example for what I would like to look like physically (understanding that I’m not the other person, of course, just something to work towards). I wanted to make sure whatever example I pick would be realistic for me to good to. Not sure why, but people seem to be hush hush about whether or not they are enhanced or not. So in my brain if I picked an “enhanced” athlete as a goal and I’m natural, that would be unrealistic. But, if I’m hearing you correctly, unless I’m wanting to be the largest Ronnie has ever been (which I don’t), then it won’t really matter as long as put in the long term commitment in my training and diet, I will be able to accomplish what I need to. Am I hearing that right?

    Follow up question about cutting/diet:
    To reveal even more personal information, the reason I’m IF/Keto is because I’ve been diagnosed with insulin resistance due to a horrible diet growing up (tubs of ice cream until 3 am most nights). I hit my peak at 242 lbs when I was 12 years old, and then a hard road of losing weight commenced. 5 years later, I got down to 175, but that took an obscene amount of effort to lose considering those were my growing years so I shouldn’t have had to put in hours and hours worth of exercise every day and have my diet perfect to see the scale move. Needless to say, soon after that (maybe 2 years?) I was back up to around 240. Four years later, I was back down to 200, 10% body fat. That took on average 2 hours worth of lifting and training for a marathon AND eating a completely lean diet to get to. If I did anything less, I would gain weight. Hurt my shoulder in the gym and immediately bounced back to 255 within a year or two. That being said, every time I gained the weight back, my diet didn’t go to crap. I’ve never eaten really bad since my pre-teen years. Always looked at labels, and quite often tracked calories. All that I did was eat a little more carbs and my workouts lessened, then my weight skyrocketed. At this point, went in to get a full panel done because we believed something was wrong. That’s when we found the insulin resistance and why it’s been a struggle and why I was prescribed IF/Keto.

    ALL that being said, not even sure if you’ll have any guidance for my situation. But how would your go about cutting? Do you believe the IF/Keto is the best course of action until my body balances out? Do I need to increase cardio and decrease lifts? My progress since started your programs have been awesome. Before I hurt my shoulder and stop lifting for a couple years, my max flat dumbbell press was 115 for 1. Within 3 months of your program I was doing slight incline dumbbell press for 120 for 4 easy. So I don’t believe muscle gain is the issue, never had an issue with it. It’s always been fat loss. I had major success with the current prescribed treatment for the first 3-4 months, dropped 30-35 lbs, but then hit a major plateau. It could be I’m gaining muscle at the same rate I’m losing fat, but I doubt that honestly. I’m currently doing your Pec focused program and adding in your arm day from week 6 of Armageddon for a little extra. Besides that, for cardio I’m just walking 3-4 miles a day with my wife and child and then doing a mile run after I lift at the gym. I’ve done plenty of HIIT in the past so I’m not opposed to that if that’s something you recommend. Anything helps, it’s been a real struggle bus with fat loss over the years. First milestone I’d like to hit is 215 lbs at 8% body fat, then see where it goes from there.

    I understand you’re pretty busy, so if this all stuff you’ve covered in other videos, I’m sorry, please direct me to those and I’ll watch them rather than have you repeat yourself. I’m currently going through all the guidance videos, I think I’m about halfway through. Then I’ll be tackling the others. Let me know!

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