As you may know bodybuilding is a little bit more complicated than just lifting weights and doing cardio, building a quality physique takes a lot of time, effort and patience, a lot of bodybuilders define bodybuilding as a marathon and not a race because it’s not something that you want to rush, it’s all about the journey and living it, this journey is made out of training, resting, eating and just having fun with it, a lot of people like staying lean year round as they slowly want to put the muscle without the added fat but at the end of the day if you want to get big you need to think and well, eat big.
A beginner bodybuilder may think that bulking consists of eating everything and anything that’s in sight, it doesn’t matter if it’s healthy or not, to some extent this is true but not completely. If you are bulking you’re definitely going to eat more than you were before but you have to be conscious of what you are eating as this is the key, if you want to get bigger you need to eat and train bigger, the more you train the more energy your body burns and therefore the more food you will need, if this is your first time bulking and you don’t know where to start don’t worry about it because by the end of this article you will know the basics.
Nutrition: The key to bulking is nutrition, you can’t gain muscle if you don’t eat the part, everyone mostly has problems with learning how to eat, if you already have a meal plan that has been working for you then all you need to do is make the portions bigger, if you’re eating two eggs for breakfast eat four, if you’re eating two chicken breasts with rice for lunch then eat three or four, just take it easy on the fats and sugars.
If you don’t have a meal plan you will need to create one, start by eating three big square meals a day, you will want to have lots of protein and lots of carbohydrates but low fats and sugars in your diet, breakfast should be pretty basic, eat lots of eggs, some sort of meat, toast and oatmeal, for lunch try to eat chicken with barbeque sauce, rice and vegetables, avoid eating after 6pm so make your last meal around 4pm or 5pm, eat steak, chicken, rice, vegetables or whatever makes you feel full; Nutrition is key so keep it simple and easy, try to avoid sugars as much as possible.
Workouts: Your workouts should be kept simple, the more weight you put on your body the more weight you should technically be able to lift, make your workouts a lot more intense (faster) and keep the weight up, bulking or as some people like to call it “Off Season” is all about gaining weight and strength, don’t be afraid to do new things at the gym, it’s a learning phase so play with it. If you don’t practice any other sports other that bodybuilding chances are you will lose some mobility when gaining weight so try stretching before and after each workout, this will keep your joints and muscles flexible.
Cardio: A lot of guys like to cut cardio off when bulking, this is a really big mistake, if you want to gain muscle without fat you need to do cardio, it will keep your cardiovascular health in check as you gain the weight and your muscles and joints will be kept in check, a lot of people don’t know that by doing cardio the body’s metabolism increases meaning that the more cardio you do the faster it will run and the faster it runs the more food it needs to keep working so keep it simple, do 20 or 30 minutes before or after each workout, your body will thank you for it.
Abs: Unless you are genetically gifted with insane genetics that allow you to see your abs when doing a bulk then chances are your abs will fade or disappear for a while, don’t worry as it’s a natural process, most people tend to accumulate fat in the stomach area but that doesn’t mean you should stop training them, abs are made visible in the kitchen but abs are made strong at the gym, as you gain weight your core will need to be stronger to carry it without getting injured, keep doing light abdominal workouts three or four times a week, your abs will be stronger, you will avoid injury and they will look better by the time you start cutting.