In part 2 of this lesson on bulking up for your wedding, Anthony from groombuilder.com outlines the nutritional changes you need to make in order to pack on that lean muscle mass.
Muscle Gain: Nutrition
To look awesome on your big day (and avoid any embarrassment), follow these ironclad rules for lean muscle gain.
Rule #1: Eat 5 – 6 times per day
The hardest part of gaining muscle isn’t the training or the cardio; the hardest part is eating all that damn food! In order to get your body to grow, you have to eat more than you ever have before—and as you exercise more, the amount you eat goes up again to make up for that extra calorie burn).
The easiest method is just to eat more frequently. Have three regular meals per day, and add in an extra snack in between. For example, between meals, have a protein shake with berries and almond milk. Or have a handful of almonds.
Remember: when it comes to muscle gain, you have to think of your eating as PART OF YOUR TRAINING. Make your fork your second barbell.
Rule #2: Eat at least 1.5-times your bodyweight in grams of protein
If you want more muscle, you need more protein.
Pick healthy sources of protein like fish, lean meats, eggs, nuts, and quality protein powders. Eat at least two servings with every meal. Also, don’t worry about that protein myth. Researchers found “no data in the scientific literature to link high protein intakes to increased risk for impaired kidney function in healthy, physically active men.”
Rule #3:Eat good carbs and veggies with every meal
I said “good carbs,” not “potato chips.”
Processed carbs lack nutrients, disrupt your insulin levels, make you fat, and have been linked to all types of inflammatory diseases. Instead, eat carbs like sweet potatoes, white potatoes, fruits, steel-cut oatmeal, quinoa, rice, and real whole grains. This will give you the fuel in the gym for maximal performance as well as the vitamins, fiber, and minerals to support muscle growth and recovery.
Meanwhile, vegetables will provide a ton of vitamins and nutrients to boost your health, make you feel great, and add muscle without the fat. There is NO LIMIT to the amount of veggies you can eat with each meal. Remember to “eat the rainbow” — that means vegetables of all colors (green, red, purple, yellow, orange, white, etc.) to get a full assortment of nutrients.
Rule #4: Eat clean 90% of the time
A calorie is NOT just a calorie. Every calorie needs to be packed with nutrients and vitamins to build the maximal amount of muscle and boost your recovery.
Compare eating 800 calories worth of pizza vs. a healthy stir-fry with lean chicken and veggies and a baked sweet potato: What will lead to more muscle growth and less fat gains (and heart attack risk)?
That was a rhetorical question. You know the answer as well as I do. The point is: if you want to add lean mass, you’ve got to eat right. In the next article, I’ll explain the other thing you have to do: training.