Gaining weight has ultimately got to do with one thing and one thing only: letting more of life breathe into you. Whether you decide to eat more or lift more, if you think about it, it just translates into you trying to become more alive.
Unfortunately As a kid I had a hard time understanding this, and consequently stayed skinny throughout my younger years.
It was like if everybody had a certain gene that only I lacked: the muscle mass gene.
I found it impossible.
Why would life give this challenge to me and not to others, I thought?
It didn’t make sense.
I tried absolutely everything:
- All sorts of workouts
- All sorts of diets
But nothing really worked. I was condemned to a life of being skinny forever and having to watch others achieve their fitness goals, while I remained the same.
It was really infuriating.
And so in my desperation to find whatever it was I was lacking, I decided to master the art of gaining weight.
It was a conscious decision, just one day I thought to myself: I’ve had enough! I’m tired of that shit.
And on the back of that everything changed.
I had this idea that somehow I would find a way to succeed and in the aftermath tell everyone about it.
And then finally it happened: after a few years, through constant trial and error, and with a lot of perseverance, I got what I desired.
And that’s how it starts—with a mentality shift.
And little did I realize at the time that this new way of thinking would later become the backbone of my whole strategy to gain weight.
#1: Be Consistent
You have to be consistent with your efforts; otherwise you can’t expect much to change.
you need to give the body a constant message that it absolutely needs to grow.
And It’s not going to understand with just one time. You need to give it a good reason to want to change and adapt to the new stimulus.
What stimulus am I talking about here?
And this brings us to our next point
#2: Consume More Calories Than You burn
If you want to gain weight, you can’t expect to do it without eating a surplus of calories everyday.
If you burn 2000 calories a day,
You’ll have to eat 2500 calories a day
To gain weight. That makes a
Surplus of 500 calories a day.
So you understand how this works, very simple right?
In order to get this right, you only need to know two things:
- How many calories you burn each day
- And how much you need to eat to be in a surplus
The last point automatically begs the question:
Where do I get those calories then to put myself
In a surplus?
#3: Eat High Caloric Foods
Like I just said previously, you need to eat a surplus of calories in order to gain weight.
And the easiest way to achieve this is by eating high caloric foods.
Gaining weight is hard enough so you need to be smart about it.
Eating 2500 calories worth of lettuce is going to be pretty hard.
So therefore you’ve got to find the foods that have the highest calories, which will make the task at hand that much easier for you.To make my point—it’s much easier to eat small amounts of a high caloric food, like chocolate, than eat copious amounts of a very low caloric food like cabbage.
It’s just basic common sense really.
A few of the foods I would recommend—and have used myself—would be the following:
- Whole milk
- Greek yogurt
- Olive oil
- Peanut butter
And what I would do with all of these ingredients is put them all in a blender and make me some high-calorie shake; one that I would usually finish all in one go.
But speaking of preparing shakes, you might’ve noticed that I didn’t specify any dosage.
The reason being that I don’t want you to get too hang-up on eating a certain amount of calories.
The only important thing to remember is to always eat more calories than you burn.
Just be consistent with it.
Otherwise you might become calorie-obsessed, and a health-nut, which you’ll see is counter-productive to making any real gains.
#4: Control Your Anxiety
Worrying is the single most powerful obstacle you need to face in your quest to gaining weight.
Studies have shown that cortisol, which is a hormone produced during times of stress, has negative effects on muscle growth, as it literally eats up your muscle by pumping out glucose out of your glycogen stores.
Cortisol also makes your body store nutrients as fat, and I’m guessing this isn’t what you want.
no, what you want is gain weight in the form of muscle mass.
You want muscle, not fat, as any normal person would.
But unfortunately in the times we’re living in, getting away from stress can be next to impossible at times.
With the world becoming increasingly complicated and giving people always less free time to truly enjoy themselves, you can understand the high suicide rates.
Killing oneself is evidently an acknowledgment of how powerless that person desperately felt. And the message is painfully clear at this point:
I’m going to kill myself because there’s absolutely no way I can cope with the demands, the challenges that life’s throwing at me. And I’ll make the world a favor by removing myself from society, in the most absolute way, by killing myself.
And this feeling is shared by millions people, as we’ve just highlighted the high suicide rates, which have become the number one cause of death in the United-States of America, ahead of automobile accidents.
That’s a truly staggering fact to me.
So giving yourself some time off once in a while is a good idea:
- Going on trips, vacation regularly
- Practicing some kind of sport
- Doing yoga
- Go dancing
- See a funny movie
All of this works.
And why not do it if it makes you happy, right?
Too often we prioritize what we should do over what we would like to do.
#5: Change Prioritizes
Changing prioritizes is very closely related to controlling your anxiety, in the sense that changing your prioritizes in life and favoring your well-being more will keep you from falling into constant stress-mode.
If you’re looking always to please and meet expectations others have set for you, in order to be recognized as a decent citizen, you’ll burn yourself out sooner or later—and we all know what that does to your muscles.
To become someone new physically, you have to become someone new mentally first.
Basically, What you’re trying to do is expand yourself.
You want to get bigger.
Now think about it. Why do you want that (to get bigger)?
To beat up on someone?
To look good?
But ultimately what you want is to take up more space than you did before.
I think the rock—Dwayne Johnson—said it best when he was asked why he had started a WWE career.
I’m sort of paraphrasing but it went like this:
I looked at the famous wrestlers like Hulk Hogan and others, and what fascinated me was how they all looked larger-than-life.
And a big part of the WWE’s success came down to this man (at least the peak years), where he would just project the most raw and uninhibited masculinity ever seen on screen, a dominant, bright and spectacular energy—a truly larger-than-life human-being.
People recognized that energy. They looked at him and thought, man I want to live like that, I want to live intensely like that guy and take-in life like he does.
And that’s what it comes down to in the end: being able to breathe in more life, to represent something greater, something that’s enlightening to others.
You want to be a shining light in this world and to make people feel that staring at you is like staring at the heart of life itself.
Understand that it’s not just about the muscles. The muscles are just a means to an end; it’s more about expanding your inner-self.
but it is true that having big muscles will help you.
#6: building Muscle Mass
What people usually mean by “I want to gain weight” is that they want to look bigger.
They’re most of the time not even that interested in their actual weight, but more interested in how they look, unless of course they’re doing it to become a better athlete.
And in that case I understand it may be different: your performance might depend largely on you meeting a certain weight.
Anyway, whatever your situation may be, this is how to gain muscle mass through exercising:
- Compound exercises
- Slow tempo
- 8-12 reps
Those are probably the main 3 that anyone would say are the most important to gain muscle mass and size, and ultimately weight.
compound exercises are multi-joint exercises.
- Handstand push-ups
These are multi-joint or compound exercises because they involve several joints to do the exercise, and thus several different muscles at the same time.
As opposed to
- bicep curls
- Leg extensions
- Tricep extensions
- Overhead press
- Chest presses
which are isolation or single-joint exercises meant to “polish” a muscle more than to actually increase its size.
Its more about training the details, putting on the final touch after you’ve achieved the muscle size you wanted.
So concoct a workout that is comprised mainly of compound exercises.
But all of this counts for nothing if you don’t do the exercises in a certain way that maximizes muscle growth.
And on we go with the tempo of your reps.
**Keep The Tempo Of Your Reps Low
Ideally I always recommend a 2 seconds up, and a 4 seconds down approach.
For example with push-ups:
Make the “push part” last 2 seconds. And the “down part” last 4 seconds.
And concentrate on the muscle you’re working on ( in this case the pectoral muscles).
At the end of your workout you’ll feel a huge pump in your muscle, like it’s about to explode.
That’s a great sign you’ve done it well.
I can tell you: the most satisfying feeling you can get in the gym is by far the pump—it just fills you up with this enormous confidence as lactic acid builds in.
if you fail to achieve a pump, working out is going to come across as extremely boring extremely quickly.
you have to make it as pleasurable and satisfying as possible.
This will go a long way into helping you gain weight. And as you’ve been reading my article, you should know by now how important that is.
but lets not forget the rep range factor.
**Reach failure between 8-12 reps
It’s accepted that the optimal range for hypertrophy (building muscle) is the 8-12 rep range.
Now that doesn’t mean you should just stop when you get to 8, 9,10,11, or 12; it means you shouldn’t be able to lift anymore when you get to those numbers.
Anywhere in that range will do.
In other words, if you can still go for a 13th rep, you’re simply not lifting heavy enough.
The trick is to choose a weight that makes you reach failure exactly between those two numbers: 8-12.
So that requires preparation on your part: to know in advance which weight will do, and which one will be either too heavy or too light for you.
Having said that, it’s not a massive endeavor either and you’ll only get better for it in the end.
The final result is what counts always, however boring what precedes it might appear.
And something that’s definitely not boring is getting what you want and showing off to your friends afterwards.
Until you get to that point ignore the naysayers, the people who try to discourage you. They’ll soon stand in awe of your greatness, as they’ll be the first ones to ask you how you achieved it.
And to get there as soon as possible, start with my 8 Steps To Unlock Functional Strength Program, where you get a supreme workout program, nutrition plan, and much more to get you rolling as fast as possible.
To get it even up a notch use Yorhealth’s high quality protein shake that’ll fill your muscles with the optimal nutrition for rapid muscle growth.