Eating Right For Muscle Growth
I would say most of the male clients that I meet will all mention wanting some muscle growth as a goal. It’s a great goal for anyone to have, even if your goal is fat loss, more muscle mass = more calories burned at rest.
Unfortunately though building muscle can be a long slow process, how slow depends on your training experience, for those of you reading this who have been training seriously for under a year you can expect 2-3 lbs per month. Been training for around 2-3 years, around 1-2lbs per month. Any longer than this and you can expect around half a lb per month!
Of course these gainz are only going to occur when using a progressive workout AND enough calories to encourage the growth.
Most people trying to gain lean muscle can often become worried about gaining too much body fat at the same time and therefore don’t eat anywhere near enough calories (hypocaloric) to grow. If you want to grow you need to be putting in more calories than you’re using. So how much should you be eating?
A simple place to start is by using this simple equation. Obviously this is under the assumption that you’re training hard 3-4 times per week.
Try eating around 20 calories for every pound of your body weight.
(Multiply your weight in kilos by 2.2 to change it to lbs)
So for a 75kg guy
75 X 2.2= 165lbs
165 X 20 = 3300 calories per day
This will hopefully put you in a hypercaloric position which will leave your body with the opportunity to grow.
Try eating this amount of food consistently for a couple of weeks, regularly checking your scale weight and see if it starts increasing.
Remember the whole idea is to gain weight, so don’t be to scared of seeing the weight creep up. Slowly.
Once you’ve found the right amount of calories, where those calories are coming from (proteins/fats/carbs or macronutrients) will make a huge difference to the kind of weight you’re gaining. A good personal trainer will be able to help you find both the right amount of calories and right quantities of macronutrients.
Ideally get a body fat measurement taken to make sure your body fat isn’t going up too quickly. Some body fat increase has to be expected, trying to find that sweet spot where you’re gaining weight, but not too quickly is key. Too many calories and you’ll be putting on too much fat as well as muscle, not enough calories and you won’t grow.
Gaining lean muscle can be a tough process, as mentioned above the gainz made even when doing all the right things can be minimal. If you’re new to training take advantage of those “easier” gainz and get everything working in your favour right from the outset. For the more experienced, commitment to your diet and training is going to be even more important to see progress, so don’t neglect any part.
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