It isn’t easy being a skinny guy. All the long hours in the gym, the insane amounts of food you eat, and you still can’t gain weight. A tale as old as time. It can be frustrating, and downright demotivating. Still, before you abandon hope and switch to zoomba and spin classes (not that there’s anything wrong with that) we suggest you read the article below.
A couple of tips can go a long way, and who knows, you may just yet gain the weight you want.
Eat, Eat, Then Eat Some More
Eat more. Yes, we know, you heard it a million times. Still, eat more. A big part of gaining weight is calories in, calories out. Try to ingest more calories than you actually burn off. The best way to do this is to track your calories. Sure, you can go on the see-food diet (see food, eat it). But, this can just leave you with some muscle, and a lot of fat (and an empty fridge). Avoid too many carbs, and stick to the good stuff.
Eat calorically dense food. Beef, beans, dairy products, oats are all excellent choices. Skip the sweets and sodas. And if you want the ultimate performance meals, you can always employ a company that prepares your bodybuilding meals for you. Trust us, after some time, eating 3000 calories worth of beef and beans will drive even a Zen monk insane.
If you decide to eat out, choose healthy, but protein-rich foods, like steak and potatoes. Drizzling everything in mayo will get your calories up, but will also clog up your arteries in no-time.
Compound Exercises are a Godsend
Go heavy. Never have a workout that doesn’t have compound exercise making up the bulk (see what we did there?) of the routine. In case you don’t know, compound exercises are ones that hit multiple joints and muscles in your body. Perform exercises like the bench press, deadlift, squat, military press, and bent over rows; all that good stuff.
In fact, full body workouts (routines that are 80% compound exercise) have been proven time and time again as the best for anybody wanting to pack on some pounds. So three workouts per week, five sets of eight, squat, bench press, overhead press, stiff legged deadlifts, and some arm and ab work for the summer, and you are good to go. You can also increase your reps to 12 for your arms, calves, and abs.
Don’t Neglect Sleep
Sleep may just be the biggest issue for a lot of people. When you work out, you damage the muscle fibers and have them grow bigger and stronger. However, this means they, well, have to regenerate. And this only happens during sleep.
No need to go overboard, but try to have on average around eight hours of sleep every night. Not only will you grow faster, but you will also feel better, think faster, and just be happier all around.
Protein is a Must
While this may not be that big of an issue if you stick to our meat and potatoes diet, you should still try to have a vague idea of how much protein you take. Most recommend around 1.1 g of protein per pound of body mass, and you should stick to that.
Protein is what actually rebuilds your muscle tissue, and is the most important part of your diet. Just don’t forget about your daily serving of veggies and fruit.
Set and Focus on Strength Goals
A good idea would be to set progressive strength goals. We know, you want to build muscle, and strength will just come along with it. But, you will invariably grow even if you just focus on strength. By seeing your numbers increase on your big compounds, you will know whether you are doing something correctly or not.
It is biologically impossible to see a 30-pound increase on your bench press, and not see your chest become bigger.
Increase Volume or Intensity
Finally, if you are really in trouble and can’t see any results, and are one hundred percent certain you are doing everything right, well, then the solution is simple. You are either not tracking your sleep, protein, and food correctly, or you need more volume.
Workout volume is essentially the number of reps and sets you do in a given workout. We suggest you keep your reps between 8 and 12, but, increase your sets by twenty percent.
So there you have it folks, a quick and dirty rundown on how to gain some solid muscle and develop an impressive aesthetic body. Get your protein intake right, eat like your life depends on it, and always go heavy in the gym, and you are good to go.