Gain Mass

The Clean Bulking Guide for Hardgainers

For frustrated skinny people, clean bulking is attainable if you focus your diet accordingly with the right foods and strategy.

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wok with steak and vegetables

Question:

Is there a way I can bulk up wthout getting too much fat?

Answer:

Clean bulking takes a ton of discipline and the right strategy. It’s not a bulk that allows you to sit on the couch and chow down on fried chicken and Chinese takeout. It’s more like prepping to play a superhero in an action movie. “Knocking down the basic food groups is the biggest thing you need to do to get big and lean,” says Jim White, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Start your day by hitting several groups at once: five egg whites, a piece of fruit, and some avocado for healthy fats and fiber. “A lot of guys think, ‘I can’t eat fat. If I eat fat, I’m gonna be fat,’ and that’s not true. We need 20% fat in our diet,” says White. Snacking midmorning on almonds or walnuts is a good idea as well to add more healthy fats and protein. A good lunch option is a lean, healthy salad with non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli or carrots and some protein like grilled chicken. For a midafternoon snack, try hummus with whole-grain crackers.

The key is to eat consistently. And dinner is the easiest option: Skip fatty cuts and go for five ounces of lean meat. “Gaining lean muscle means going for leaner cuts of meat, like flank steaks and fillets, chicken, and, of course, fish,” says White. Enjoy your meat with some starch: rice, beans, quinoa, wholegrain couscous, or sweet potato, for example. Those are the basics for a clean diet (assuming you don’t slather all those foods with butter and/or ranch dressing).

To gain weight, you just eat more of the same healthy foods you do to get leaner, (larger portions). If you used to have a cup of oatmeal for breakfast, make it a cup and a half; instead of prepping four ounces of chicken for dinner, make it six. Consistency is key, and as tough as it is to achieve, it’s what you need to stay on track. This means planning your meals and snacks, so get ready to get into a new (healthier) routine.

Stir Fry:

Throw steak, vegetables, nuts, and brown rice in a wok for an instant clean meal.

Fit Fact:

Walnuts are full of both healthy fats and protein, making them an ideal snack.

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