It is finally the day we have all been waiting for… FRIDAY! The hardest part of it being Friday is that it is very tempting to just skip the gym and relax. Don’t forget this workout routine revolves around your personal schedule, desires, and needs; it’s not a strict outline. With that being said, if you are able to push yourself to the gym then today is another day of chest/biceps. You can change the techniques you use, or repeat them exactly if you prefer. But for those who decide to take a break, this post is for you. This blog will be all about “bulking”. Before you get intimidated, “bulking” is just eating! Let’s hope you’re hungry.
The idea of “bulking” is to eat more calories than you burn so you can gain muscle mass. Usually, along with this you gain weight as well, but it healthy to do so. The good thing about this is that everyday is basically a cheat day. For the most part you can eat everything you want, but there are still guidelines to get the best results.
There are so many different bulking diets out there, from easy to complicated (counting macros). But we are going to focus on the simplified versions.
Nutrition is NOT a “one-size-fits all” concept (MyProtein)
There are various recommendations for the amount of calories you should consume, but as long as it is significantly more than you consume regularly, then you should still see results. I recommend at least a 2000+ calorie diet. Before you get ahead of me and grab a sugary dessert, I should explain the difference between a “dirty bulk” and a “clean bulk”.
When you “dirty bulk”, you consume a lot of protein but you can eat anything you want; including foods high in saturated fats and sugar, which is hard to burn off. The best bulking is a “clean bulk” where you eat a high protein diet accompanied by foods with “good” fats (omega-3s), natural sugars, and hearty carbs. If you eat a “dirty bulk” diet, it can effect your cell-membrane strength and elasticity and makes you prone to chronic systemic inflammation, which causes weakened muscle mass and joint pain (Muscle&Fitness). Not only is this harmful for your overall health, but it goes against the point of bulking. The reason people use this technique is to gain muscle mass rapidly, so they can use a “cutting” method (reducing calorie intake, to define muscles) after.
Goods foods to eat when you are “clean bulking” is:
These foods are high in omega-3s, which promote brain functioning and joint health. They are also high in vitamins, fiber, protein, and carbohydrates which provide energy and help with muscle repair.
This diet can be enticing and rewarding for all your hard work in the gym. Even though a “clean bulk” does not necessarily condone sugary snacks, you can still fit some of your favorite cheat day meals in, during the bulking season. Everyone’s body responds differently to various foods, so just learn about your own with some experimentation. The length of “bulking” is completely up to you and how your body acts with this diet. So go ahead and eat your ice cream or donut and don’t worry about your calorie consumption, as long as you are eating a “clean” diet along with it. If you are worried about gaining weight, don’t. The next post will be all about “cutting” the weight off. Enjoy your cheat day!