This article will help get you in the biggest, baddest and best shape of your life!
Introduction – Getting Big and Lean
We all want to get big and lean. As the old bodybuilding saying goes: “You can’t flex fat.” Well that is all fine and dandy, but how do we add mass without becoming a cross between Rosie O’Donnell and the Michelin Man?
Despite the nasty picture embedded in your dome right now, it brings to light an important point: bodybuilders do not need to get super-fat to gain lean mass in the off-season! Sure, it isn’t optimal to try to gain lean mass while at 5% bodyfat, but you can keep it within reason. It is possible to stay around 8-12% bodyfat and still reap all the benefits of a bulk without having to diet for 52 weeks for your next show or for your summer vacation at the beach.
The things we need to examine are of course the Holy Trinity of Physique Enhancement among other things. What is the Holy Trinity of Physique Enhancement?
Diet is the determining factor with regards to all things LEAN. Training is of course the catalyst that triggers lean mass gains, but think about it…If you change your training and keep your diet the same, you might notice some very MINOR results. But if you change your diet and keep your training the same, you can literally go from bulking to cutting in just a few macronutrient adjustments.
Supplements are just that – they supplement and help you to maximize the gains you get from your diet and training. We LOVE supplements, and especially taken at the right times, they can lead to profound results in lean mass gains and fat loss.
The hard part is your meathead muscle. Yes, that’s right – THE BRAIN! You need to be ready to adhere to a program of bulking and eating for lean mass. This isn’t a see-food diet. This is a controlled bulk that will give you lean mass gains and let you keep those sexy abs. So what are you waiting for? Let’s gain some LEAN MASS NOW!
The Lean Bulking Mindset
Individuals trying to gain size tend to lose their minds in the process. Depending on one’s pathology, they either feel too small or too fat. While you will gain some fat on any program, that is no reason to look like Michael Moore.
Speaking of Michael Moore, I am all for his plight to help poor people, but if he donated just half of the food that he ate he could feed the entire impoverished world. But enough about that fat guy, let’s talk about your lean glutes.
Will yourself to eat clean. Does this mean all of the time? Heck no! But we will get into that later. Treat every training session like it is your last. Push yourself. Challenge your muscles. Tear them down and build them back up!
Every meal is like a workout – don’t miss it. The calories matter, and you want to eat clean, healthy calories. What is the point of being big, lean and muscular if you are not healthy? After death, atrophy occurs, so not dying is goal number one!
So treat these 12 weeks like a transformation contest, because it is. How much lean mass can you gain and how much can you improve? The answer lies within.
Supplements do just that…they supplement your diet. MTS Nutrition is a quality brand that can help you reach your goals.
We are trying to gain lean mass and put on little to no fat. Thus, with this program we recommend starting it below 12% bodyfat. The leaner you start, the more muscle you will gain compared to fat. If not in this range, I recommend waiting to do this program until you can diet down and get under 10% bodyfat. Once you reach this level, then start the program.
This is easier said than done and requires a huge commitment on your part. This will be sort of like a contest diet married to a bulking program.
When most people think bulk, they think about pizza, chicken wings and tostadas. I personally think about whipped cream and a Playboy Playmate, but that is just what my appetite desires. But for you normal people, whipped cream might be too high in fat. Also, you might not like to mix food with fun. Thus, we will get into the diet that allows us to to bulk with PURE lean mass, and to also improve overall health and lifestyle.
The first step will be to set protein and fat. We will cater these macronutrients to your needs and goals.
We want to ensure you get adequate protein from your diet, so I recommend at least one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. You will obtain this protein from lean sources such as chicken breasts, white meat turkey breasts, tuna, Machine Whey Protein Powder, lean sirloin steak, etc.
Fats should be from healthy sources. Nuts, seeds, peanut and almond butter, olive oil, and macadamia nut oil, for example. These foods should have minimal “bad” fats, like the ones in butter, vegetable oil and margarine.
People tend to take an all or nothing approach to carbs. Here is where we differ. If coming off of a contest prep diet, I recommend adding carbs in one meal at a time, starting with the post workout meal (PWO). We will assume that you have been dieting on lower carbs.
You are going to want to start with your protein and fat. Set your protein and fat, spread throughout 5-6 meals. I would recommend for most as a generic outline 1.5g per pound of bodyweight per day of protein and about 60-120 grams of fat, or 5-15 grams of fat per meal over 5-6 meals. This will have PWO carbs included and zero other carbs throughout the day.
For a male, it might look like this:
- Meal 1 – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat
- Meal 2 – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat
- Meal 3 – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat
- Meal 4 PWO – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat, 60 grams carbs
- Meal 5 – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat
We will then add carbs into meal 1 once a sticking point (no CLEAN weight GAIN) is reached. It will look like this:
- Meal 1 – 42 grams protein, 15 grams Fat, 60 grams Carbs
We will then do the same thing to meal 2 when then next stick point is reached, then meal 3, then meal 5, until all meals include 60g Carbs. If you need more calories, add in a meal 6. This is simple and effective.
You are using the fat and protein for growth and the carbs will provide your body with easy to use energy to prevent your body from using the protein and fat for energy. Thus, growth and staying lean are unstoppable. And with this balance, insulin will be under control and fat storage will be minimal.