How To Gain Good Weight
Is your body type stuck on skinny? Here are the most effect ways to put on muscle!
Although weight-loss strategies are ubiquitous in the fitness industry, not every person in the world has that goal. In fact, questions about the best ways to gain weight pop up more often than you might think. Skinny teenagers, underweight adults, and hard gainers of all stripes scour the Internet for ways to put on muscle.
The reason you keep hearing the same advice is because putting on some pounds is really a simple matter of consuming more calories than you burn. Now, we all know at least one person who has made the mistake of eating a lot more than necessary, not exercising, and packing on lots and lots of excess fat. That’s not what we’re here to do. We want to give you the tools so you can eat just enough calories to put on some muscle, but not enough to put on a lot of excess fat.
If you don’t notice any changes, feel free to increase to 750 or even 1000 extra calories per day. If you notice weight gain happening too quickly, then lower your calories down to 200 or 300 extra per day. Realistically, you can expect an increase of 0.5-1.5 pounds in body weight each week. If you’re nowhere near that range, adjust your calorie intake.
The biggest issue people have when trying to put on muscle is the sheer amount of food they have to consume. You’re definitely going to have to eat a lot of calories, but there are a few tricks you can utilize to decrease the volume of food you have to chew and swallow. That way, you’ll get more calories per bite and feel less like an overstuffed teddy bear.
Be Calorie Smart
Do your best to consume nutrient-dense, calorie-rich food. Fats and oils, nuts and seeds, avocado, red meat, whole eggs, full-fat dairy, and oily fish are great choices for getting a lot of calories without having to fill your stomach to the brim. Don’t waste your time trying to fill up on gummy bears or saltine crackers—they just don’t provide enough calories or nutrients to be worth the effort.
That said, it’s also important that you let go of the mindset that you need to eat 2-4 grams of protein per pound of body weight. No scientific evidence suggests that eating all that extra protein will increase muscle just don’t provide enough calories or nutrients to be worth the effort.
That said, it’s also important that you let go of the mindset that you need to eat 2-4 grams of protein per pound of body weight. No scientific evidence suggests that eating all that extra protein will increase muscle mass—plus, that kind of diet can get pretty expensive. The 40/40/20 bodybuilder split just may not be the right choice for you.
Extra calories make extra pounds
As you plan your meals for weight gain, remember that you don’t have to follow the no-salt, no-butter, no-flavor rules most competitive bodybuilders follow. Add gravy, sauces, creamy dressings, and other seasonings to your food. Not only do these extras make the food taste better so you’ll want to eat more, they add ever-necessary calories.
We also suggest choosing foods that require little cutting and chewing. So, instead of always having steak, eat ground beef or pulled pork.
Eating in a calorie surplus is no easy feat, and if you’re serious about packing on the pounds, you’re going to have to eat every 2-3 hours. This will require you to do a little planning ahead, but easy snacks to take on the go include trail mix, granola, peanut butter sandwiches, protein shakes, and bagels. And get yourself a weight-gainer to mix up a daily protein shake with milk.
About the consumption of Crabohydrates
Carbohydrates can offer the same calorie count per gram as protein, but they are less satiating. So, don’t be afraid to add some extra carbs to your meals. As you do, though, choose carbs that have lower fiber content so you don’t fill up as quickly. We like noodles, white rice, bread, and fruit.
And watch out for fruits and veggies with a high water content. While they may be a great source for vitamins and minerals, all that extra water can leave you feeling full and lessen the chance you’ll be going back for seconds. If you’re worried about coming up short on your micronutrients, we recommend a daily multivitamin.
Have Some Fat
Fat is a smart choice for your weight-gaining diet because it has twice the number of calories per gram than protein and carbs. Also, fat has the lowest thermic effect of food compared to carbs and protein. In other words, your body burns anywhere from 5-30 percent fewer calories digesting fats than it does the other two macronutrients.
An easy way to up your diet’s fat content is to cook your meat and vegetables in olive, coconut, or other calorie-rich oils. In a pinch, add a little oil to your protein shake.
You can also sneak in some extra fat with your selection of protein. Opt for 80/20 ground beef, chicken thighs over chicken breasts, and look for a little more marbling in your steaks. Good options include rib-eye and T-bone.
Concerned about too much fat and cholesterol in your diet? Don’t be! Recent findings suggest little evidence linking fat intake to cardiovascular disease. While you still want to be mindful of your saturated fat intake, don’t fear the fat!
Lifting weight to build
Once you have your nutrition figured out, you can make some tweaks to your exercise regimen. Really, any resistance-training protocol will help you build muscle, especially if you’re supporting lifting weights with a lot of calories. But if you want to put on some noticeable muscle mass, stick with strength and hypertrophy protocols.
Hypertrophy-based protocols require 3-4 sets using a moderate weight—around 70-80 percent of your one-rep max. This type of training has been shown to cause significant increases in the muscle-building hormones testosterone and growth hormone.3 Train hard, but make sure you’re giving yourself enough rest in between sets—around 1-2 minutes—to make your workouts less metabolically challenging.