I am going to show you how much to eat to gain muscle, because most people do not realise how much is enough. You see, muscle building nutrition is one of the most important aspects of packing on muscle mass.
All your training will go to waste and will not mean squat, if you do not eat enough to fuel new muscle growth.
It is a bit like paying someone to build you a wall, but not giving the builder any bricks. You can pay the builder as much as you want, but they still cannot build a wall without the bricks.
So, enough of the reasoning for eating and all that, lets take a look at how much to eat to gain muscle.
How Much To Eat To Gain Muscle
I will show you some examples on how to put all this together at the end of the article. But for now, it is important to understand how to work out how much food you need.
How much you need to eat to gain muscle, will depend on your metabolic rate and how much energy you take in and out, from food and exercise.
Your metabolic rate is basically a combination of how much energy your body needs to stay alive. Processes like breathing, maintaining body temperature and the like. All affect your metabolic rate.
There are formulas to work out your metabolic rate, but I do not want to turn this into a mathematical article, as they are quite long.
Therefore, I have put a simple calculation you can use to guide you below:
Slight weight gain: 30-35 calories per kg OR 14-16 calories per pound
Greater weight gain: 35-40 calories per kg OR 16-18 calories per pound
To use the figures above, you simple multiply your bodyweight (in kilograms or pounds), by the figures shown. For example: if you weight 200 lbs and you want to put on a lot of weight, you multiply 200 x 16 = 3600 calories.
The above calculation means that you need 3200 calories a day to gain weight.
Now that may seem like an awful lot of eating, but that is the sort of calories you need to be eating, to put on muscle!
Maybe now you realise why some people have a hard time gaining muscle?
If you are going to use the above figures, you will need to use some trial and error. As the figures are not set in stone, so you may have to increase or decrease your calorie intake. You are best aiming for your calorie target, for a few weeks, while keeping an eye on your weight and muscle gains.
Alrighty then, are you still with me after this? Starting to realise how much you actually have to eat? I hope you are.
Now lets take a look at what food to eat to gain muscle, as this is terribly important. Because eating the wrong calories from foods can ruin all your efforts.
What Food To Eat To Gain Muscle
Once again, I am going to keep this next section as simple as possible. Not because I do not think you are not smart enough, but because I want to keep this article as streamlined as possible for you. I do not want you reading any ‘filler’ information from me.
The foods you need to eat can be broken into 3 different categories, which are also called; macro-nutrients. Every food that you eat has these 3 macro-nutrients in them, these 3 macros are:
So, what does this have to do with you? Well, it is very important to eat the right macro-nutrients to fuel new muscle growth. Each macro-nutrient provides your body with certain nutrients which are essential.
Protein: is the building block of life and is what your muscles are actually made up of. If you take the water content away from a muscle, you are mainly left with protein.
Carbohydrates: are sugars which provide you with energy. You can get energy from other macro-nutrients, but it is important to eat carbohydrates so that other nutrients are not wasted on energy.
Fats: are an often misunderstood nutrient, but should form an essential part of your diet, be it for muscle gains or even weight loss. Fats are involved in literally thousands of bodily processes; One stand out one being hormone production, (can you say testosterone?)
The list above is not exactly a complete detailed look at the macro-nutrients, but I put it there to give you an idea of what they do. What is important to know, is how much of the macro-nutrients you should be eating.
I will show you a sample plan on what food to eat to gain muscle, with these macro-nutrients. But for now I will give you a quick guide, to let you see how it is worked out.
The best ratio of these macro-nutrients to use is the easy to remember 40-30-30 ratio. Do not worry I will explain what this means and it is quite simple.
The 40-30-30 ratio basically means to get 40% of your diet in carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fats.
Remember this is only a guide, so do not start sweating at the thought of trying to work all this out exactly. But your total calorie intake should be roughly made up of: 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fats. Understand?