He_Man saidYou're better off just doing a "clean bulk" than doing a yo-yo diet of bulking and cutting. Eat plenty of protein and clean, fibrous carbs while bulking and then you won't have to spend all of those weeks, days and hours cutting afterwards.
If you're a hard gainer or an ectomorph, then you can take advantage of eating whatever you want, and even if you gain a little fat weight, you'll still be able to get rid of it pretty easily just by tweaking you diet in the end.
Bodybuilders will generally do carb cycling or some form of a ketogenic diet following their bulking phase to get ready for a competition. Keep the proteins high to offset muscle loss and eat plenty of fibrous carbs, cutting out all processed carbs and refined sugars from you diet. This should minimize muscle loss, but you'll still lose some muscle, not to mention strength while you're going through the cutting phase.
It doesn't make any sense to maintain the same caloric intake just to then spin the wheel like a hamster. Your results are mainly due to your nutritional planning and diet, not burning all of that needed energy doing extra cardio.
Like I mentioned above, you are going to be weak during a cutting phase, so you're better off using that energy to lift weights so as not to atrophy. Doing too much cardio and losing too much energy due to said cardio will only hurt your already struggling weight training. You're way better off focusing that energy into maintaining your muscle mass, not using it to burn off excess calories. Burning excess calories can be achieved by altering your diet, not spending valuable time spinning the wheel. Diet is the key, not excessive cardio. Cardio is used to maintain heart health, not as a one-stop method for loosing weight.
Oh, and be patient, too. You want to go from 186lbs to 215lbs? That's almost 30lbs. I remember that you previously stated that you were doing this the all natural way, not even doing supplements, protein drinks or pre-workout drinks, so it's going to take some time gaining 30lbs of pure muscle mass. You can't even gain 30lbs of quality muscle weight by doing one steroid cycle, so doing it naturally is going to take some time. Don't get discouraged. For the natural bodybuilder, you can expect to only see about 1.5lbs to 3lbs on average and, at most but rarely, 5lbs of muscle a month and that's if you're doing everything correctly (eating a lot, sleeping a lot and training correctly) so give it some time. It could take a year or more for you to gain close to 30lbs of quality muscle.
Yeah, that's what i was doing my reading on, yesterday. Before i even consider an alternate route, i wanna see how far i can get while being natty and from my reading, apparently have to cut about 5% if i wanted to cycle.
In a period of 4 months (with a month to cut), i gained 12 lbs so I'd say I'm doing alright. My body seems to do good during gain. I don't know what's my body type exactly but the muscle comes on quick and seems to last before i lean (the strength loss f*in blows!). The thing in, that the day before yesterday, i ate like a mad dog at a buffet... I mean: two plates of mushrooms and chicken/beef, a plate of noodles with egg rolls, that fried sh*t with cheese in it that looks like origami, a few of those cream filled puffs, sweet plantains, cantaloupe, a few slices of cake, a bowl of ice cream, some wontons and a few of those sugar sprinkled rolls..... The gain lasted approx about a day, if even before the slight bloat went away and i was back to normal size again.
I'm hungry like almost ALL the time!
If i knew a guru who can teach me his ways when it came to cycles, I'd consider it, maybe. I'm just gonna do what i can and do best in the meantime, though: lift.