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[Article] Fadi’s smashing the myth of muscle gain/fat loss


want to gain muscle
I want to lose fat
I don’t mind gaining muscle and fat; as long as the scale tips in favour of muscle.
I don’t care; I just want to gain weight
I don’t care; I just want to lose weight
I want to lose fat but not muscle
I want to lose fat but maintain as much muscle as possible
I want to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time.

Have you spotted the one I’m after and the one I’d be dealing with here? Yes, it’s the last one. That one is a classic.

It seems that some trainers/writers are totally devoid of manners. They not only give you the wrong advice, but they have the audacity to ask money for it! It’s not often that you’d see me going on the attack, but enough rubbish has been spewed buy some ill informed people to warrant a retaliatory action from me. I just hate it when people insult our intelligence then have the balls to demand some monetary benefit for it.

Your body is either in an anabolic (building/gaining) state, or catabolic (losing/breaking) state. Anabolic and catabolic can not coexist. So now that we know of the construction and demolition phases, what does that actually mean as far as fat and muscles are concerned?

It simply means that you can maintain muscles whilst at the same time losing fat; but you can not build muscles whilst losing fat. Remember, one is building and the other is breaking. Of course it's a lot easier to gain muscle and fat at the same time and vice versa. But our aim is to lose one whilst doing our best to hold on to the other (muscles).

I’ve noticed that some deceitful writers will promise you a loss of fat and a gain in muscle but fail miserably to include the 4 magic words: At the Same Time. In other words they don’t say that it can not be done at the same time. Some will go to great length explaining (or rather spinning their bull) in telling you that it can be achieved however, with the greatest of difficulties and that it’s always better to lose fat first then concentrate your program on building muscles afterward.

It would be much easier to tell it like it is and like it always will be; unless of course someone can prove to me that an anabolic hormone is not really anabolic but catabolic instead!


Kyle Aaron

New member
As I noted in another thread, it is possible to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time if the person is currently overfat - for men, bodyfat of 20+%, and 30+% for women, and if the person is previously untrained.

Their own bodyfat supplies the energy surplus needed to build muscle.

But once the men get down to around 15%, and the women to around 25%, this stops, and it's just as Fadi says.

I know this is so because it's just what happened to me. In January this year I had a 100cm chest and 97cm waist; in June, a 107cm chest and 85cm waist. For that time I gained 0.5kg lean mass and lost 1.3kg fat monthly.

But then in July and August my change was only +0.3kg lean and -0.7kg fat monthly. From 25% to 16% bodyfat I was able to gain muscle while losing fat. After that, I plateaued and had to choose whether to bulk or cut.

If you are an overfat beginner to weight training, you can lose fat and gain muscle at the same time, until you reach a healthy level of bodyfat, after which you must either bulk or cut.


I still say not at the same time kyle. There may have been occasions when you were gaining muscles whilst at other times losing fat. In other words you lost fat and maintained muscle; then built muscles and added less fat in propotion to it.

The body is not efficient in building and breaking at the same time. Also, if bodybuilders knew of an efficient way to do both at the same time; wouldn't they be doing it?! What bodybuilders do do is they schedule their calendar (if they are good planners that is) to have building times and cutting times. So how does a bodybuilder get bigger? Gradually and slowly or fast (depending on many factors). The smart bodybuilder gains a high proportion of his weight in muscles as opposed to fat, then goes on a cutting phase where he/she lose fat whilst working hard at maintaining as much of the gained muscles as possible.

Now remember the GRADUALLY word; here the bodybuilder goes on another cycle/phase where he/she work hard to gain muscle again, just as he did before. And again at a later stage will go into a cutting phase. On this second cycle, there should have been a carried over muscle gain from the first cycle (a higher overall bodyweight). So when the cutting begins, the bodybuilder is already one step ahead in comparison with the first phase.

And so it goes until the genetic potential of muscle size has been reached. It was done (both losing fat and gaining muscles) over a period of time and during different cycles/phases of training and dieting. Simple in words; bloody hard in reality!

This is turning into a riddle I see...

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Personally I find it easier to cut calories than to include cardio, it's worked so far.

What do you guys think of the Max OT method for losing weight while building muscle?


My personal experiences,
I have lost fat and maintained muscle
I have gained fat and muscle
I have gained muscle and maintained fat
I have lost muscle and gained fat
I have lost muscle and lost fat
I have NEVER lost fat and gained muscle
I am not saying it can or can`t be done,Kyles argument in theory sounds spot on to me.Fadi,with all his experience, is a man whose words can be taken as gospel and the science of it backs him up.
And I am a lazy slob sometimes.
The 64,000,000 dollar question here.
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Kyle Aaron

New member
Kyles argument in theory sounds spot on to me.
It's not a theory, it actually happened.

In six months, my chest went from 100 to 107cm, and my waist from 97 to 83cm. If I did not lose fat and gain muscle, where did the fat go, did it just migrate from my belly to my chest and back?

And I am not the first person to whom this has happened. It's a source of frustration to many women beginning training. Women are accustomed to looking at the scales to determine the success or failure of their diet and training. However, a woman with high bodyfat who begins resistance training will find that her total weight stays the same or even increases.

If it were impossible for her to gain muscle as she lost fat, her weight could only drop. But in fact at the same time as she's losing fat she's gaining muscle, thus her weight stays steady or increases, and she becomes frustrated because she only knows total weight not body composition.

Zarkov said:
Fadi,with all his experience, is a man whose words can be taken as gospel and the science of it backs him up.
Other people with as much experience say different things to Fadi. Who then do we believe?

The science doesn't back Fadi's comments, the science simply says that to build muscle you need an energy surplus. That surplus can come from your food, or your stored fat.

Finnish military recruits were studied during training,

"The lifestyle changes associated with military service markedly reduce fat tissue and increase the amount of lean tissue. These beneficial changes are [most] prominent among previously inactive subjects with high BMI."​

That is, after all, one of the purposes of stored bodyfat - spare energy for when the body's energy intake is less than its spending.

Again, this only applies to people who are overfat to begin with. Fadi I think is like many intermediate or advanced lifters, sees things from that perspective, forgetting or not knowing what it's like to be a complete beginner, unfit, unflexible, untrained and overfat, as an adult.

I suspect Fadi, beginning weight training at 15 and keeping it up for these 30 years or so, has not had the experience of being an overfat person new to weight training, nor has he met many such people.

However, it's very common in mainstream gyms. A guy comes in with a big belly, lifts weights for the first time in his life, cleans up his diet, and loses fat and gains muscle, then after 3-9 months plateaus.
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New member
I'm not looking to argue with anyone here but I've got some weird results on the topic.

In 10 weeks since my last measurements were taken I have gained 1" over my arms, legs, chest etc and lost 1" off my stomach, I have been having over 4000+ cals a day and trying to bulk, however my bodyweight has gone from 123kg to 118kg?

Makes me very confused? while trying to bulk, all my measurements improve but I am 5kg lighter? Perhaps my scales are just buggered?


I think we are missing a crucial element in this discussion and that is, how do you train while dieting?

I eliminated cardio, decreased the amount of reps but included more weight and sets, so far its been working.

Kyle Aaron

New member
Remember that weight can vary by +/-2% without your actual fat or muscle changing at all. Glycogen stored in your muscles is a kg or two, you can easily sweat 2-4lt (2-4kg) in a workout or night with poor sleep or the covers over you, you can go to the toilet and lose a kg, etc.

Arms, chest etc up, waist down, congratulations, you have lost fat and gained muscle :)


Other people with as much experience say different things to Fadi. Who then do we believe?

Exactly my point Kyle.
You say it happened to you and I believe you.To discount what you say would be to call you a liar or delusional.As far as I know you are neither.
So,the answer to the question is "Yes it can be done".Will it work for everyone?Who knows?

Kyle Aaron

New member
Yeah, me and 1,003 Finnish army recruits, and lots of people I've seen in gyms over the years. We all have a special unique physiology.

Or more likely, Fadi hasn't a lot of experience with beginners.

Again, this applies to people who are overfat and untrained. 35% bodyfat, never lifted more than a pint in your life before - yes, you can lose fat and gain muscle. 10% bodyfat, arms like tree trunks - no, you can't.

Beginners are different to intermediates and advanced, that's why we have different names and training for them.


New member
Any novice who has never lifted weights before can gain muscle and lose fat, simply because they have altered their terrible habits.

Once a lifter has 3 or so months of lifting, as Fadi says, its not really possible without taking steroids.

But as I said, every single novice can do this for a couple of months, and they do. The tape measure doesnt lie.

If the scales drop from 120kg to 110kg and your bicep measurement increases from 15" to 16", no matter what any expert tells you, you have built muscle and lost fat.

Thats why a proper trainer will do this for you to show you.

Be warned though, I've NEVER seen this in a drug free athlete who has already been training for 12 months.

This is just based on my experience of training people for longer than some of you have been alive, no science to back it up sorry, just results.

I'm sure most of you on here experienced this when you started, I know I did. I lost heaps of weight while my arm and chest measurement grew weekly, with the scales and my waist measurement going south at the same time.

Didnt last long enough though lol Thats the honeymoon period.


New member
Currently I am trying to lose fat, but I now that it is very difficult or maybe impossible like Fadi says to gain muscle at the same time.

So instead I am trying to lose fat, but hold onto/increase muscle strength.

Last Summer I was very lean but not as strong as when I weigh heavier. Went to a party, some other tipsy guy started wrestling me and pinned me.

I couldn't lift him off, because a) I was tipsy and b) I was not as strong as when I am heavier.

I'm going to not let that happen again.

So far I noticed that it takes longer to recover, post work out soreness is always there. If I eat more I know the soreness will pass quicker.

Kyle Aaron

New member
So you were a fat, untrained ex soldier with 35% bf?
No, I was a going-on-fat, previously-trained-but-not-in-the-last-several-years ex-soldier with about 25% bodyfat.

And never lifted more than a pint?
Not for several years, no.

You can get a second experience of the newbie gains Markos describes if you make yourself once again a newbie. All you have to do is not train for a few years, drink lots of beer and eat lots of junk food :p


I thought the topic was for losing fat and gaining muscle in general.

Ok so now we are discussing newbie gains? Then I agree completely, you can lose fat and gain muscle for a short while.

I wasn't aware that anyone had specified newbie gains.



extra crispy
yeah i thought Fadis post was based on people that have actually trained for a bit(like people in this forum), everyone already knows you can make some newbie gains that may indicate fat loss and muscle gain at the same time.


New member
I have a freind, John Donahue, he is the tackling coach for quite a few NRL teams, as well as AFL teams, so I get a bit of insight as to how those boys train.

Anyway, NRL guys do basic compound lifts. Nothing new there. Two weeks ago in the Herald Sun, they published body composition results for Billy Slater and a few of the boys. They were tracking body fat/muscle gain loss at 3 different points of the season.

they used one of those PODS, that measure bodyfat levels with water displacement, these thigs cost a fortune are the most accurate way to measure body composition changes.

I mentioned to my wife that I found it very interesting that at each juncture, everyone of the 5 players had less fat and more muscle than the previous test, all were 3 months apart during the regular season, last test was July.

The changes were small 2-4% either way, but the tests clearly showed muscle gain and fat loss happening together.

Now these guys are athletes and train VERY hard, they are paid a lot of money to perform, theyre not just gym hacks like us, so maybe it is possible to train in such a way that you can alter body composition in a favourable way at the same time.

I prefer to get my data from athletes and strength coaches rather than glossy soft porn magazines, I fiund this very interesting, if anybody could be bothered to look it up, I'm sure you find the results, as I'm going from memory here.