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Hypertrophy vs strength training for target areas

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Let me start by saying I am a novice.


I have been consistently specifically strength training for over 60 days, and over 90 days for general weights. As a female, I really want to target my back area, specifically lats, as I have not seen any progress there yet, though I can see it in my arms, legs, and waist.


Will mixing in training for hypertrophy give me better results? I am in a caloric deficit and count my calories and macros. Usually I carb cycle. Gonna be honest, self conscious about back fat with bra. Granted some is unavoidable with 5 lbs on your chest, but I want to do whatever I can to get better. I lost 30lbs last year, 5lbs in January, and 15lbs within last 90 days, 2 sizes down in last 45 days. I only have 2 sizes left to goal. 


I really enjoy lifting, and after March I will try to lean bulk because I genuinely want to see how strong I can become. Not for competitions, but for example in last 45 days I went from starting bench press at 100lbs to now 120 in a carb restrictive diet. Progress is slow, but I am excited about learning more...I just need to know if hypertrophy training mixed in with strength training will be better for building the muscle to burn the fat off those lats.


Right now I work out 6-7 days per week, Mon and Thurs: arms and abs, Tues and Fri: legs and some abs Wed and Sun: Back and calves, Saturday: rest day or abduction/adduction with cardio.

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First of all, congrats on your success so far, and on getting into the gym and lifting consistently.


Secondly, the idea that strength and hypertrophy training are different is kind of misleading. You can train with the focus of building more muscle, and you can train with the focus of getting stronger, but the reality is it's more of a spectrum than a black or white concept. When you train for hypertrophy, you tend to get stronger, when you train for strength, you tend to build more muscle. You can just shift your emphasis one way or the other, but training for strength will still give you bigger muscles, and training for bigger muscles will still get you stronger.


Thirdly, you're in a calorie deficit, you aren't really going to build much muscle. You'll shift the nutrient partitioning of your intake, and you'll cause an increased in stored glycogen in the muscles, making them appear bigger, but you probably haven't build new muscle tissue, not yet anyway.


Additionally, targeting "back fat" or "stomach fat" or "arm fat" or whatever, well, it doesn't really work like that. All you can do is stay in a deficit and wait for the fat on your back to whither away on its own. And depending on your genetics, that could be right now, or the last fat you lose, unfortunately the only way to tell, is to keep chipping away at it.


Doing a slow bulk (or lean bulk as it's often referred) will allow you to build additional muscle tissue, which in turn, will increase your basal metabolic rate, and allow you to burn more calories in a day as a baseline. It is slow however. You can only gain 0.5 to 1 lb of muscle per month realistically speaking (detrained and people who have suffered from some sort of wasting disorder are the only real exceptions), and so anything you gain over that is either 1) water weight, 2) bone and sinew, or 3) bodyfat.


None of this is meant to be demotivating however, you're on the right track, and so long as you're enjoying what you're doing, and keeping at it, I'm sure you'll achieve your goals. Good luck.

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