Optimum Bf % for strength gains

As most lifters know "Body Weight moves Weight" or the saying goes.

But personally i feel u need to set a certain bodyfat % limit to start off with otherwise u start thinking the extra bodyfat is actually all functional and end up a lard arse then the health/recovery implications come into play associated with high BF% which i wont go into here.

If your goal is to just move big weights then go ahead and keep eating to your hearts content. Super heavy weights (140kg+) dont have this issue and moves some serious weight.

Most of my comments are based on people competing in a certain weight class. For example it doesn't take a genius to figure out who would win in a comp between a 100kg@12%BF and a 100kg@20% lifter. (all things being equal of course in comparison - years of training/leverages etc) due to the higher levels of muscle cross-sectional area (CSA). This helps u keep the tension in the muscle and hence more more weight.

Recently Gary young squatting 160kg when he joined the gym.
He was sitting around 75kg 12-14% BF mark with visible abs. Just today he did a 195kg squat in wraps after 9 weeks training and he weighed in at 76kg. Still with visible abs. What changed? Just some technique changes and changes in his programming. He is only 171cm tall so the 75kg bodyweight seems like an optimum level at which is body operates efficiently. If he stalls one day then i would have him move up in weight. I have seen some guys go up in weight but mostly fat and their totals didnt reflect and as such they only got fatter.

On the other hand anything below 10% is not feasible naturally as it plays with hormone and test levels. I have had a fair few guys drop to single digits and the strength levels decreased dramatically over a 9 week period.

Its about trying to find your optimum bodyfat and weight for your body structure and 14% in my opinion is a good place to start.

PTC Sydney

John SheridanComment