So you were just happily going in and out of your “fitness spa” following some of our advice here; then one dreaded day, you noticed that you actually GAINED SO MUCH MUSCLE than you wanted. What can you do? What is the best way to LOSE MY MUSCLE GAINS?
Bulking ain’t NEVER MY PROBLEM, HOE!!!
Now, that’s one problem I wish I had but in all seriousness an actual person is really having this dilemma as we speak. Now, I am not such a jerk as to disclose his username here publicly in front of thousands and thousands of readers worldwide and just to be sure it goes on record that I informed him that this will be answered on an article. This is what his email said:
I was training just to look good in clothes so I was happily skipping my back and leg. One day I was told you will look more shredded if you trained the other parts especially legs as mentioned here too.
I did , so I looked shredded on caliper I was about 5.5 – 6 bf. However, In clothes I looked bulky (thick from side).
So, now I am trying to lose my muscle any help? (And if possible keep my bf without major increase) and what do you recommend I train?
I wanna look thin from side, no need to grow big, I hate looking massive.
Looking forward for your advice
I would be honest here; I was as surprised as ya’ll when I first read this query. If you think that this question is a troll I wouldn’t blame you one bit. But then, that wouldn’t change the fact that this dilemma actually exists in some people even though they are males (yes I confirmed that the sender is a male).
I do realize that people have goals of their own. Perhaps the goal of this person was simply to hit his caliper body fat% targets and maintain a lean muscular “tone”. As you can see, this is not exactly the “sour-grapping” that we described earlier (but its damn close) because according to the sender he “already” became bigger than what he wanted to – although I am very sure that he is not really “that” big off course. He even said (in follow up messages) that he doesn’t look as big as he sees himself in photos which are for him “misleading”.
Won’t a full body routine develop my leg and back? I wanna lose them.
Images doesn’t show that well. I makes me look normal even some poses make me so look so lean.
On Sat, Sep 10, 2016 at 3:40 AM,
Not to worry, I WILL indeed try to help the sender as much as I can.
As I feel partially responsible for his inconveniences (as he grew his lats and legs following my regimen) to which I do NOT feel sorry for but proud off nonetheless.Follow @AboutLifting
Disclaimer: Just to let you know, I am NOT AN EXPERT in making people “lose” their respective gains.
Okay so let us examine the dilemma once more and try to summarize it and then give some useful solutions later: So the sender has been training for a while and has achieved the level of leanness that he is after but eventually he added lats and legs to his split which lead him to look “big” so in short he wants to reverse the size gains from his legs and back while keeping his overall condition and shape.
Here are some plausible solutions:
Whole body regimen:Follow @AboutLifting
This was the first thing that popped into my head – whole body regimens that don’t necessarily target the growth of a specific body part. But the type of training method I am thinking off for you would NOT be the bodybuilding whole body training we often talk about but would be more like bodyweight plyos, athletic training (join a basketball or soccer training for example) , “dance craze” training (like Insanity, Zumba, Hip Hop abs, etc). Come to think of it, when was the last time you saw an athlete or a dancer with huge muscles unless he trained specifically to achieve it?
This will keep your bodyfat levels in check while creating a way for your muscles to be “worked-out” and therefore keeping you in shape.
*Just let your back and legs rot/Never train them again:
This is a plausible solution. Surely we can refer to the use/disuse principle of the 7 commandments and any muscle that isn’t used will just atrophy and get smaller.
But I am not sure this is the way you want to “get in shape”. This will just most likely produce more imbalance as you train opposing bodyparts while leaving your back and legs behind. This will result in injury, posture problems and aches and pains associated with imbalanced muscular development all over the body. Other solutions offered in this article will make more sense than this one.
Work more on the endurance side. Keep the same programs that you have but make you reps light and keep the reps as high as 25 reps without reaching to failure (especially keep it very light for back and your legs).
Light weights and No-Failure:
Failure is one major factor in muscle growth. Powerlifters manage to lift and train heavy but don’t really train to gain muscle mass so they rarely reach failure. For you – train using light weights, high reps (stated above) and avoid reaching failure for your back and tights.
Body weight squats:
Zack Fair of Final Fantasy does bodyweight Squats! (seriously, its a mini game in that game!)
Your leg problems are quite easily solved by bodyweight squats. I don’t care if you reach failure or what, no matter how many hundred reps you can do with bodyweight squats you will NEVER grow an inch from them but they are sure as hell great for over-all tone and you will still feel the “burn” and will still carry-over to most athletic activities and sports. So just habitually do as many squats as you can every day! Work up to hundred or more reps!
*It doesn’t matter if you reach failure
Do everything that I HATE:
To sum it all up it’s all this simple – as hard as coming up with advice for this is to me, I just realized that you probably just need to do the exact reverse of the stuff that I recommend and do the very things that I hate like:
-Marathons and long distance running
-“Work-out” instead of “training” (at least for your back) this will ensure that you will avoid the intensity and effort needed to make your muscles grow.
-Train in “fitness spas” and surround yourself with pussies when you train
-Listen to some nauseating upbeat “disco-tuned” music while lifting weights (or any music that you hate)
-Spend hours and hours in the treadmill or chatting when you are in the gym. For best results chose the “spas” with cable TVs hooked in front of the treadmill or the stationary bicycles. But this will probably backfire and end up making you fatter instead.
I am sure at least those 5 things will rob you of the capacity to grow so feel free to apply them liberally. Then again, I am NOT an expert in reversing one’s muscle gains, these advice might as well make you less muscular but they are also less effective in fat loss – hard core lifting is still the key even in fat loss and some studies also show that endurance cardio and exercise can make someone “fatter” so you have been warned.
These advice would probably only work for people who somehow did train “hard” before and thus achieved the fat loss they desired but otherwise WILL NEVER work for someone who has never trained seriously and wants to “just lose fat and not get big” – I am sorry but you can do your cardio for hours everyday for years and expect no results.
Did I miss anything? Any other advice you can think off that should have been included? Please say so in the comments section as you know, I am NOT AN EXPERT at losing gains so any help would be appreciated. And thank you again to the sender for this very interesting question. If you have a burning question please feel free to send me an email through the Contact page. Eat your Eggs, (or DON’T if you want to LOSE your GAINS) A-Lifters!