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Some questions for everyone! (WARNING LONG)


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Hey everybody. 

My name is Christopher, and I have been vegan for about two and a half years and vegetarian for a bit longer. 

 

I used to lift a bit back in my high school but stopped for about four or five years while I was in university. 

I started again last December, and have been trying a few different workout routines. It seems as though all "beginners gains" have happened and I am plateauing lately. 

I am 6'1" and have been hovering around 168-170 lbs for the last month and a half or so, having put on about twenty pounds since December.  I got a body composition done at my local gym a few months back, and had my body fat measured with the infared red tranducence method, ( which I have heard isn't all the accurate. Opinions? )

And my body fat was measured to be 3.5%

 

My ideal goal would to be about 180-185 lbs with body fat around 7%. 

 

The first four months I worked four separate groups, of arms/shoulders, chest, back, legs; each grouping twice a week. 

For fear of over training I have moved to just once a week with each grouping about four months ago. 

 

I am wondering if anyone has tips for me to put on the muscle I desire! I can break down each workout as well if that would help. 

 

I am trying bulk lately, so I am trying to get 3500-4000 kcals a day, and at least 200g of protein a day. 

 

As far as supplements go, I have a trueprotein mix shake once a day after my workout, with L-glutamine mixed in. 

 I tried creatine for a bit, I'm wondering people's opinions on creatine and other supplements. 

 

I know this has been quite a read, thanks in advance for everyone's advice! Looking forward to learning a lot from the people on this forum!

 

Christopher

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If you're a hard-gainer, just train each bodypart once a week. Avoid cardio, or just do about 20 minutes worth per session. Eat as often as you can (which I'm sure you're doing)

Creatine has actually helped me quite a bit. It'll cause you to retain a little water, giving you the illusion that you're a bit bulkier than you really are.. But the best part about it is that it'll speed up recovery times.

What kind of workouts are you doing btw?

Try lifting heavy, with no more than 8 reps per exercise. I usually do about 3 sets, or until failure, and I focus mostly on compound exercises such as squats, bench presses, rows etc.

Keep your weight training session under an hour, and make sure you get plenty of sleep each night. Also.. For hard-gainers like us, CARBS are your friend. I eat a lot of oatmeal.. But because of a health reason, I cut wheat out of my diet. Hence all the oats.. Lol!

 

I hope that helps.

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks for the response!

 

I would say I am just hitting a plateau now, as I did gain about twenty-two pounds before I hit this stalemate. Although I am happy to say that I have been consistently around 173 pounds since I got back from vacation, woohoo!

 

As far as my routine, I have completely cut out cardio aside from a quick warm up before I lift. I'm usually not in the gym longer than a hour, and have been doing each muscle group once a week with some success lately.

I mix in full body, compound type lifts with some isolation stuff with all my workouts.

Also trying in the last few weeks to eat literally as much as I can, focusing on the carbs and what not. Hopefully I'll be able to bulk for a few months, then cut a bit and repeat the process.

Thanks for your help!

 

New query though. Through my years of inactivity, my dominant arm(right) has gotten both stronger and slightly bigger in size than my left. I have been trying to focus on only doing arm exercises for my left so it can catch up, my thinking being that my right arm/shoulder get a good enough workout for now during chest/back days.

Is this a good idea? Isolating the left arm? Or should I be doing both arms and it'll eventually catch up on it's own?

It seems like it doesn't want to put mass on at all ha

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New query though. Through my years of inactivity, my dominant arm(right) has gotten both stronger and slightly bigger in size than my left. I have been trying to focus on only doing arm exercises for my left so it can catch up, my thinking being that my right arm/shoulder get a good enough workout for now during chest/back days.

Is this a good idea? Isolating the left arm? Or should I be doing both arms and it'll eventually catch up on it's own?

It seems like it doesn't want to put mass on at all ha :(

 

My old weight room manager had all sorts of ideas for this stuff. For instance, start getting into the habit of reaching for things and carrying things with your left hand, also opening doors with your left hand. Not only will it strengthen the muscles, it will perform a miracle of balance in your brain, enabling more balanced thought. Loads of research on it; no time to go into it just now, I gotta run.

 

The thing I do is load my weights at the gym with my left hand as much as possible. That's a whole routine in itself! And it works.

 

Baby Herc

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Your diet seems pretty solid. Stick to your set routine for a while, and log your workouts. Make sure you are progressing each workout, whether it's 1 rep or 5 pounds or whatever. If you are not progressing, something is not on point (diet,routine,sleep, etc) with strength comes size.

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