Friday, December 14, 2012

Off Season Bulking

by Kris Pitcher

I love it when I hear bikini competitors talk about their "bulking" phase. Go ahead, call me "the name". I am not for one minute suggesting they shouldn't have one, what I am suggesting is it's the most misunderstood period since menstruation began.

I'm bulking!
Off season certainly means something different for everyone you ask. For some, it means anything goes, no exercise, no "diet" until 16 weeks out from their show. When I hear these types utter the word "bulking" I know what they really mean is...I get to get fat.

That's not what bulking is about. Bulking is about putting on muscle, building shape, and making improvements.

It is about eating more of the right kinds of macro nutrients in the right amounts to fuel your workouts. It is not about getting fat, although naturally you will be gaining.

You are not going to gain 15 pounds bulking. You are lucky, ladies, if you put on 4 or 5 pounds of muscle doing everything right during your off season. All that fat. And the process takes time, that's why it's called a "season". It won't happen in 2 or 3 months.

And I don't mean to pick on any one division of competitors, bulking is misunderstood by many. In order to put on muscle, you need to be working hard (really hard), fueling properly, and resting adequately.

So, if you tell me you're "bulking" and in the next breath you say that you ran six miles...I'm on to you! There's a clear confusion of goals here. Bulking isn't just freedom to eat what ever you want either. That's called not dieting. Which is fine too. We all need occasions when we aren't dieting.

Mostly, off season bulking is about bringing your diet up to a level which will allow your body to grow. And I guess that's why I chuckle in the first place when I hear bikini girls say "bulk". If you're eating greek yogurt, fruit, or anything more than 75 gms of carbs a've got enough fuel coming in. You don't need to do anything different to build. Just work differently.

My advice is to choose your words carefully, because you might be causing unnecessary snickering. Maybe bulking isn't the best word choice when what you're doing is going into a building phase. It's gentler. Unless of are. Bulk up ladies! ;)


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