I'm hoping someone here might be willing to offer me a little advice.

I have been attempting to increase strength and put on a little muscle for a couple of years now. I feel like I have not been successful (at least to the extent I'm looking for) because I don't commit completely to a plan, or stick with it long enough, or eat correctly, or a combination.

Long story short: After being pretty conscientious about my workouts and eating for many months, I sort of fell off the wagon last fall due to a confluence of factors going on in my life. I was eating poorly, drinking too much, and not exercising. Come January, I had put on about 10-15 extra pounds.

So since that point, I've been doing light cardio, watching my calories and doing about 80/20 primal eating, and attempting to get that weight back off. Still have the spare tire that I'd like to be rid of, but making progress. I have not been lifting during this time.

So...would there be any benefit to continue on this 'cutting' path until my waist is closer to what I'm looking for? I realize that I will need to eat more to add muscle, so some of it would come back. Just not sure if I should keep this up, or jump back into lifting.

Moreover--any advice for a good lifting routine for someone who has some experience with free weights and pretty much knows proper form, but really hasn't put on much in the way of muscle? Has anyone had success with Mark's program?

I was, for quite awhile, attempting to follow this '4 day split routine' (it was either this exact plan or something very similar). Dougs 4 Day Split Workout | Muscle & Strength

Whether I was not pushing myself enough, not eating enough, or attempting to move up in weight too quickly, I did not feel like I was making a whole lot of progress, even after several months.

Thoughts? I would appreciate any advice offered. Thanks.