The general strategy adopted by most present-day competitive bodybuilders is to make muscle gains for most of the year (known as the “off-season”). The bulking phase entails remaining in a net positive energy balance (calorie surplus). The amount of a surplus that a person remains in is based on the person’s goals, as a bigger surplus and longer bulking phase will create more fat tissue. The surplus of calories relative to one’s energy balance will ensure that muscles remain in a state of anabolism.

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