An effective muscle building diet is crucial when trying to bulk up.
Your goal should be to add between half-pound to two pounds of muscle every week.
In order for you to increase your weight (only in the form of muscle, I might add) you must increase your calorie intake by an extra 500-1000 calories daily, above your basal metabolic rate.
A muscle building diet on its own is not sufficient.
You must increase the frequency of your training regime, as well as increasing your muscle resistance exercises.
Exercising alongside a muscle building diet are the two key components to help you on your way.
An average hardworking body-builder will need an extra 10 calories per pound of body weight in order to meet his/her daily basal metabolic requirement.
If you are currently into a training regime, your body will require an extra 7 calories per pound of body weight just to meet your day to day activities which will include strenuous movements and mental focus.
I advise that these activities include a well thought-out weight training regime coupled with cardiovascular exercises.
To illustrate this point…if an individual weighs say 180 pounds and is reasonably active their life but also undertakes intensive training will need to consume about 3,060 calories (in the form of a muscle building diet) if he/she wants to build quality muscle
Remember the Formula: 180lbs x 17 = 3060
In my opinion, most body-builders’ version of a muscle building diet will consist of 40% complex carbohydrates, 30% fats and 30% proteins.
Please note that this in only an example for illustrative purposes and should only be viewed as a guideline.
We are all different in many ways and our bodies are unique, and accordingly, they respond in different ways.
Some individuals may prefer a different ratio that might work better for them.
I recommend that you use your body and a mirror as yours!
If you look in the mirror and you are not pleased with what you see and how you feel, make little changes to your muscle building diet and keep changing the nutrient ratio and portion sizes until you find what works best for you.
In order for muscle growth to occur along with increases in strength/recovery you must consume adequate levels of quality proteins and complex carbohydrates to help you undergo intense training sessions.
I recommend that you aim to consume at least 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of your body weight and 1.5 to 2.5 grams of carbohydrates per pound of your body weight.
Make sure that you pay particular attention to how your body is responding to the protein/carbohydrates ratio in your muscle building diet. A lot will depend on your body’s insulin sensitivity, metabolism and body fat levels.
When starting out with your muscle building diet, I recommend that you start out with 1 gram of protein and 1.5 grams of carbohydrates per pound of your individual body weight.
Increase this by 25% every week if you do not notice any growth. Your fat intake in your muscle building diet should consist of 0.5 grams of fat per pound of your body weight.
Remember that there are 4 calories in every gram of carbohydrates and protein and 9 calories in each gram of fat.
If you weigh 180 pounds you will need to consume 180 grams of protein per day, 270 grams of carbohydrates per day and 90 grams of fat per day.
If you add all that up, it comes to a grand total of 2,610 calories.
Any muscle building diet formulated in such a way will ensure that you gain quality muscle mass minus the horrible body fat.
I know what you’re thinking; there is a 400 calories deficit! Where do the 400 calories come from? The answer lays in what we body builders commonly refer to as the ‘Freebie Meal’.
How to Maximize the Muscle/Fat Ratio
- Try to get into the routine of consuming a minimum of 5 calorie-dense meals and one protein shake each day. You might be thinking that this sounds like a lot of surplus calories but in my professional opinion, it is vital to facilitate your muscle growth
- Time your carbohydrates carefully. You should have one meal before you train, one meal during your workout (in the form of a shake), one hour after you train and one meal four hours after your training session. Focus on providing your body with carbohydrates for when they are required for a workout.
- Focus on rotating your protein intake with every meal to help you optimize your food absorption and digestion. I find the best sources of protein are bison, sirloin, turkey, chicken, salmon and whole eggs.
- Rotate you carbohydrate sources with each meal. This will help you avoid developing any allergies. I find the best sources for carbohydrates are potatoes, rice, Ezekiel cereal and bread, oatmeal, beans and fruit.
- Try to ensure that you eat at least 1 cup of vegetables with every meal. This will ensure that your digestion is fully optimized and your blood sugar levels are controlled.
- Rotate your fat sources by eating a healthy variety of saturated, monounsaturated fats. I find the best sources include walnuts, cashews, pecans, almonds, coconut oil and avocados.
- Furthermore I recommend that you take 30 to 50 grams of carbohydrate powder, 10 grams of glutamine, about 10 grams of branches-chained amino acids and 5 grams of creatine approximately 30 minutes into your work out. This will be an effective tool to diminish the blunt cortisol and help with your muscle growth.
- I recommend that as soon as you wake up in the morning, you drink a good quality organic greens supplement. This will ensure that your body is infused with the correct vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids and alkaline salts that assist in neutralizing acids which in turn ensure that your cells are living in a conducive environment.
Well there you have it!
After reading this article, you should have a good idea on what your muscle building diet should consist of.
If you have any question regarding any aspect of a muscle building diet, please click here to contact us and our expert will be more than happy to advise you.