Although all skinny guys crib about their being overly thin, they never really take the initiative to find out the reason for their poor physique. Most of them feel helpless and demotivated, not to mention their poor self-confidence and lack of self belief. The ones who do take the pain and try to gain weight end up with no major results. Why? Because they spend countless hours in the gym without any strategy, goal or plan on how to go about bulking up.

The number one rule for bulking up, as Vince has explained in No-Nonsense Muscle Building,  which is undoubtedly the best guide for bulking up, is that you should have a clear idea of what you are doing, why you are doing it and how it is going to help you achieve your goal of bulking up. Also, you should have your goals clearly written in a personal diary, as it will motivate you to take action. As you start working on your goals, you will easily be able to see and celebrate your progress. Whenever you start slacking off, you can always refer back to your goals and get motivated to achieve them by starting to work on them right away.

Talking about the diet for bulking up, let’s get into some details on how you can design a perfect bulking diet that’ll help you gain weight and grow your muscles at the same time. Remember you don’t want to gain fat, you want to gain weight by growing your muscles. And in order to do that, you’ve got to put in the effort – by lifting hard and eating a healthy diet that is specifically designed for bulking up. There’s just no shortcut that you can take and grow your size in a matter of days. You’ve got to accept the fact that growing muscles and bulking up takes time, anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the type of diet consumed and the effort put in while lifting weights. It becomes quite easy to bulk up once you’ve accepted this reality and are willing to follow through on your routine diligently, as lack of results after a few days will not be able to deter your progress and demotivate you. Now let’s take get into the details of the bulking diet you need to consume.

How Many Excess Calories Should You Consume to Bulk Up:

This is one of the most frequently asked questions by people who are starting out with a bulking up program. While the answers you find on the net can vary & might end up confusing you, the thumb rule is to eat an excess 500 calories over and above what you normally eat in a day. So for example, if you consume 2000 calories a day, you’d have to step it up to 2500 calories per day. This will lead to the excess 500 calories being stored in your body and ultimately getting converted into mass (and helping you while working out). These extra 500 calories a day will add up to 3500 calories in a week, which is enough to add a pound of body weight every week. While this may not feel enough, in a matter of 2-3 months, you will have gained over 10-12 pounds, which is by no means a small achievement.

Although you could start eating an extra 1000 calories a day for gaining more weight, I’d recommend not to do so, simply because you should give your body time to adjust to the changes. Also, if you adopt an aggressive weight gaining approach, you would run the risk of burning yourself out too soon, not to mention the side effects it might lead to (bloating, nausea etc.) and also the health problems it might pose.

If you are not sure about your current calorie intake, you might as well refer to one of the food calorie charts on the internet or just google them and calculate your calorie intake by adding the calories of individual food items you eat in a day. The biggest mistake you can make is to take things casually and not worry about the diet. If you simply start lifting weights and don’t focus on the diet, you will end up wasting your time. Simple as that. As the phrase goes, “Bodybuilding is 80% diet“.

How Much Protein Do You Need:

Since we very well know that proteins are the building blocks of muscle and invariably help in the growth & repair of muscles in our body, it is important to consume a diet rich in protein. That’s not to say you need a high protein diet, but just enough to keep things balanced. You also need a bit of fat and carbohydrates in your diet, but we’ll come to it later. For now let’s focus on the protein part.

The thumb rule of protein consumption is to get 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. So for example if you weight 140 lbs currently, you’d need to eat at least 140 grams of protein per day. If you do, I can guarantee the results won’t be far away, provided you follow the other tips as well. At 4 calories per gram, 140 grams of protein will add up to 560 calories.

The Amount of Fat in the Diet:

Although you’d like to stay away from fat, especially after hearing & reading all the negative facts about it regularly, the fact is we have to include fat in our diet since it plays a key role in bulking up. But we need to keep it in moderation so that it doesn’t lead to any harmful effects.

Keeping things short and simple, roughly 30% of your calories should be derived from fat. So if you plan to get 3000 calories a day, about 900 calories or so should come from it. Since fat has 9 calories per gram, you’d need to eat roughly 100 grams of fat a day.

What About Carbohydrates?

Carbohydrates are invariably the most important source of energy for our daily activities. Once consumed, carbs breakdown into smaller sugars (glucose, fructose and galactose) that get absorbed in our body and provide much-needed energy.

So far as per our hypothetical example we have consumed 1460 calories in total (560 from protein & 900 from fat) out of the stipulated 3000 calories a day. The remainder of the calories have to derived from carbohydrates, which means you need to consume nearly 1540 calories worth of carbohydrates a day. At 4 calories per gram of carbs, this equates to around 385 grams of carbs every day.

Eating Frequency of Meals:

Most newbies make the mistake of trying to stuff up their body through the regular 3 meals a day diet they are used to, which leads to serious problems of indigestion along with several other side-effects. The best method is to divide your diet between 5-6 meals and consume roughly 450-500 calories through each meal so that your body is able to digest the food easily.

Also, you might want to drink a few shakes in between – especially banana shakes, since bananas contain high amounts of carbohydrates. One banana shake easily adds up to 300-400 calories, which is perfect since drinking something is far easier than eating the same amount of solid food.

Is There a Guide I Can Refer To?

When I was starting out, I had absolutely no clue how to get rid of my skinny frame and pack on some muscle mass. Fortunately I came across a great guide on bulking up called No-Nonsense Muscle Building, written by a former-skinny bloke named Vince Del Monte, who had been able to transform his skinny physique and consequently won the 1st position at Canadian Fitness Model Championships in Windsor, Ontario in 2005. So I decided to buy this guide and try out what Vince recommended. Slowly and steadily, as I followed the exact plan mentioned in his book, I started seeing progress and was eventually able to bulk up in about a couple of months. So if you are keen to get hold of a great guide for bulking up, you should definitely check it out.