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About Draugin

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  1. Thanks all for the useful replies. I am not training specifically for powerlifting (at least for now), the target is improved physique and strength. From the next workout I'll try switching to dumbbell bench press and see how I feel -- in addition to dips which I already have in other days. I might add overhead presses.
  2. Thanks for the reply. I just kept going with the above diet, it seems it's working well for me. Yeah, bulking is hard, and not for the gym part (in fact, I find that fun). Now I am gaining about 1 kg (2.2 lbs) per month, which I understand it's a good goal for muscle building, but it takes constant effort -- I am full, if not bloated, almost all the time. I plan to start cutting soon, but I wrote another post for that.
  3. Question about cutting! Some stats: I am M 35, 5' 9'' (1.77 m), 154 lbs (70 kg). Since I started a clean bulk last summer, I put on 11 lbs (5 kg). I think my BFP is somewhere in the 18-22%. Hard to judge because of body structure -- I look lean and you can even spot my upper abs but then I have a slightly protruding belly (the belly is not a consequence of bulking btw, it just showed up when I entered my 30s and stuck around). At the moment my calorie intake is 2570 kcal on rest days, +200 kcal on workout days (3/week). By tracking calories and weight, this has
  4. Quick question about bench pressing. It's hard for me to find a spotter for the barbell bench press as I go to my gym early and I am often the only person doing free weights. For safety reasons, I haven't been loading the weights as much as I should have (that is, I stay far from failure, and add in a psychological risk-averse attitude), resulting in a very slow progress, or even lack of progress, on my bench press -- while other lifts have been growing steadily. Would dumbbell bench pressing be better/safer without a spotter, and equally good as an exercise? (it seems to me
  5. Six months ago I changed my diet to be healthier and start bodyweight training and then powerlifting, and a couple of months ago I also started tracking my calories and macros (which I find very useful). I would like to hear if you have input on my current diet. I am male, 150 lbs, currently doing a clean bulk. I eat ~ 2550 kcal per day, + 200/250 kcal the days in which I train (3 times a week). I also eat extra in days in which I do some other extended activity (e.g., a hike). Note that I recently increased the calorie intake by 200-250 kcal per day because my weight had
  6. That's a good point, thanks for the suggestion. I have seen it myself -- my early uniformed attempts at bulking up produced very little, despite the fact that I was in my early 20s at the time. So yeah, I'll see what I can do better in terms of nutrition.
  7. Well, but this way, I will never know if my current policy is optimal, or if I could do even better by doing something else. On the other hand, it might not be worth exploring and wasting resources if the results are "good enough". Typical exploration/exploitation trade-off... Yeah, every other day is probably good for now. Thanks.
  8. Hi all. Background I have started bodyweight training mid-May this year, and powerlifting (following the NF Academy training) at the end of August this year (at the venerable age of 34). During my life I have been sporadically to the gym, for bouts of a few months at a time every four years or so; but this is the first time I have been training regularly, three times a week, for more than six months now, and I am not planning on stopping. Turns out, I was doing everything wrong in the past (i.e., I was doing a lot of machines, and not eating correctly). With proper training an
  9. Thanks all for the replies (apologies for the delay; I have been travelling and relocating to another country). In the end, I have temporarily dropped "proper" IF until I am in the bulking phase, which will probably last for a few more months. I still try to keep a fixed window of fasting/eating (I do 14/10), and I still train in a semi-fasted state, so that later on, when I start cutting, I can try and switch to proper 16/8 IF. I say semi-fasted because I take a protein shake just before workout; and I dropped BCAAs - the pre-workout shake should be enough. Finally,
  10. Hi RisenPhoenix, thank you for the great & detailed response! Also, I like when people highlight the uncertainty in the provided answers -- this is far from an exact science, so "maybes" are welcome. I have read many good things about IF, so I decided to give it a try. Of course, "my mileage may vary". I am male, 34, so at least it should have no downsides. At the moment, I mostly want to reduce body fat (get rid of some belly), and possibly gain a bit (at least keep) muscle. I understand that the traditional approach is to switch between bulking and cutting
  11. Hi all, I am a relatively new to fitness - started in June - and I am toying with intermittent fasting after reading about its benefits (now it's more like 15/9; trying to get to a regular 16/8). I have also started taking BCAAs before and after training in a fasted state in the morning. Would you recommend to keep doing it? Should I only take them before training? Also, would you recommend to take BCAAs also in the mornings I do not train? As far as I understand, BCAAs have calories (even though they are listed as "0 calories", see e.g. here), so it would mes
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