As a nation, we are inundated with ads for diet pills, lotions and potions on a daily basis. We are looked at, by most of the world, as a nation of overweight, food-obsessed, lazy people. Our daughters emulate stick-thin fashion models and our boys want to be the star quarterback. Unfortunately, we have an often overlooked population in our country that is just as obsessed with their weight: the chronically thin.
Just as those who are overweight want to become thinner, and have a difficult time doing so, those who are thin want to become heavier, and often have an even more difficult time doing so. We often look to these thin people with envy and fail to understand how they can be unhappy with their bodies. For the incredibly thin, however, issues with weight can be just as prevalent.
If you are someone who has always struggled to gain weight or muscle, there are ways to gain in a healthy way, whether you do so with exercise, diet, supplements or any combination of the three.
Foods that are high in protein can help you put on weight in the form of muscle. Lean proteins like chicken, turkey and fish are great options. Add sides of vegetables, cheese and nuts to maximize your weight gain. Aim for at least six meals every day: breakfast, lunch, dinner and three snacks. You’ll have to plan your meals just as carefully as those who are dieting to lose weight. The difference is that you, in your attempt to gain, should take in at least 1,000 extra calories than is recommended for your height and weight.
Snacks that you eat throughout the day should be just as carefully thought out as your meals. Cheese, muffins, yogurt and breakfast bars, coupled with a glass of whole milk, can help you gain the weight you desire.
How you exercise is just as important as how you eat. Rather than focus on long-periods of cardio, concentrate on short bursts of intense cardio and lifting with your major muscle groups. When you are lifting weights to build muscle, concentrate your efforts on major muscle groups: squats, military presses, bench presses, dead-lifts and chin-ups will help you gain muscle mass more quickly than bicep and leg curls.
Each time you lift weights, add a slight amount of weight to your routine; this will ensure that your muscles continue to work and build strength rather than reaching a plateau which will find your gain stagnated.
Supplements, on their own, will do nothing for your weight gaining goals. However, when used as a compliment to proper diet and exercise, supplements can give you the boost you need. There are two supplements, specifically, that can help you gain both weight and mass. Those supplements are weight gain shakes and creatine.
Weight gain shakes can be used in between meals, as a snack, or in addition to your main meals to increase your caloric intake. Creatine, on the other hand, should be taken 30 minutes before your workout and again immediately after a workout. Taking creatine in this manner will ready your muscles for a workout and prevent your muscle fibers from breaking down after a workout.
There are many myths when it comes to diet and nutrition, whether you are trying to lose or gain weight. Beware of fad diets and quick-fixes; you’ll only be disappointed in the end. By following a nutritionally sound diet, exercise and supplement routine, you’ll be on your way to gaining a respectable amount of weight and maintaining what you’ve gained.
Tyler Nelson is a personal trainer and blogs for supplement-deals.co.uk a sports nutrition site where you can find great deals on phd pharma whey.