You want to be big but you want to stay ripped? Well, join the club! There are tons of lean mass schemes out there for a reason: No one’s body wants to stay lean. In fact, our bodies tend to prefer being heavier. It’s much easier for our bodies to store fat than it is to build muscle, so being massive and lean is a tough task for your body to accomplish.

Common “bro science” would have you believe that you need to pick one or the other: lean or big. And while there’s some truth behind that—to achieve a perfect fusion of the two you’d need some *ahem* assistance—you can find some harmony between the two. We’re not saying you’re going to be the next Mr. Olympia but you’ll certainly have an enviable physique. After all, what’s the point of being strong and huge if you look like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? Yeah, not the dream body you were after.

It is going to take time and patience, but these 15 tips will help keep the extra pounds off and help you add slabs of beef to your frame.