There is 1 thing above all other factors that determines if you can put muscle on at all, how much you can put on and at what rate.
It's not steroids, or training, or sleep….
Many people have gotten into the fad of calorie counting for cutting and then don't understand why they aren't growing when they're trying to gain muscle.
If your body expends more calories than you're taking in per day, all of that food you ate has been burned off to fuel your everyday activities.
None of it has gone into building muscle tissue or gaining weight.
The only way you gain muscle is by eating a calorie surplus, where there is an excess amount of calories that goes towards facilitating muscle growth.
I can't stress enough how important eating a calorie surplus per day is.
Even if you're on thousands of milligrams of anabolics per week, you simply will not grow if you're not eating a calorie surplus.
This is why it is so important that when you pick a goal, it doesn't conflict with another goal.
Sometimes people will under eat to stay lean, but then want to put on muscle at the same time and gain huge amounts of size.
It simply will not happen.
You are either gaining muscle and minimizing fat gain eating in a calorie surplus, or you are losing fat and minimizing muscle loss eating in a calorie deficit.
It would be wise to pick one goal or the other while figuring out your diet plan.
Throw the concept of burning fat and building muscle simultaneously out the window because even if you could accomplish that, your results would be subpar.
It doesn't matter if you have testosterone levels through the roof and take 10 iu's of HGH per day. If you aren't eating enough food, you won't grow.
That is why I stress calorie counting so much, especially for newbies. It's just not something that is optimal to do when you're trying to get shredded.
The opposite approach to calorie manipulation should still be taken while bulking. I tell guys this time and time again, the most anabolic thing you can take is FOOD.
Train hard. Train smart.