Gaining Weight For Skinny Guys


 Gaining Weight For Skinny Guys

“I can’t put on weight I’m just too skinny”


Do you fall under this category?

There are a number of things to keep in mind if you’re of the ectomorph body type and are trying to gain weight. It won’t be easy, because if you’re a naturally skinny person, it is your body’s natural inclination to stay there, and default back to that state if you fall off in your training or diet.

We all have a friend who can destroy a pizza and still have ribs showing. Often this type of eater is even surprised that he doesn’t gain weight from eating these high-calorie foods. If you are that guy and you’re trying to gain weight and strength, not just fluff, there is hope.

The simple fact is there is no metabolism on earth that will prevent the human body from growth when it is fed and exercised properly. Adopting a few changes to your life and routine may take some getting used to, but ultimately you can gain mass if you follow the right plan. Remember that to facilitate change, you will have to eat to grow—this means planning, scheduling and discipline and you will have to train to grow and fuel your appetite. If you’re not willing to make significant changes, you will not experience not just when you’re hungry.

Gaining Weight
Eat More Often

Eating every three hours will keep your metabolism working at a higher rate, so in effect you will find yourself feeling more hungry and able to eat an increased diet in terms of overall intake. Your body requires at least your weight in pounds x 20kcal to grow.

  • Breakfast. First, beginning your day with a glass of ice cold water does wonders for metabolism and gets your body’s natural processes working. Follow this up with a good sized meal. Protein is always necessary to start the day for a variety of reasons including brain function and lasting energy stores.
  • Lunch & Diner.  Preparing double portions whenever you cook can save you a lot of time and remove thinking from your next meal. If you’re not too fancy to eat the same meal twice in a row, you can kill two birds at breakfast when you prepare your lunch for day and have dinner waiting for you to heat up.
  • Snacks. It’s absolutely critical to keep healthy snacks around that contain some protein, some fat and some carbohydrates. Keep away from starchy snacks and chips in the interest of gaining healthy mass. Organic nuts, food bars and protein shakes are always useful.
  • Post Workout. As you probably know by now, vigorous exercise burns calories and you can only gain weight if you have a surplus of caloric intake. If you’re really trying to gain, the post workout meal becomes even more important. Don’t fear the food coma, for an ectomorph trying to gain, get those calories in.


Fill up on Calorie Dense Foods

While you should never stop eating vegetables, let’s consider for a moment that 100 grams of rice has 350 more calories than 100 grams of spinach. You need the nutrients contained in vegetables, but combining them with calorie dense foods can help you reach the critical levels of caloric intake for gains.

  • Pasta. Once you’ve reached your goal, whole-wheat pastas and quinoa-based pastas are preferable for health, but for gains, go for the white pasta. Add veggies to your sauce for nutrients and meat for protein.
  • Raw Whole Milk. Whether you grew up drinking milk or not, this one is a favorite among many athletes trying to gain. Raw is the healthiest, most natural option but Whole Milk will, without a doubt help add pounds. Try two 8 oz glasses per day on top of your existing diet.
  • Nuts. Though mentioned in the snacks section, it’s important to mention that nuts are packed with calories, fat and protein that your body needs for growth. These are great between meals. Also try almond butter, it’s healthier than peanut butter (which is not really a nut).

Gaining Weight For Skinny Guys Plan Your Attack

When you’re adding a good deal of food intake to your daily life, you must plan or you will fail. You will eat what is in the fridge when you’re home, so plan ahead, make double portions and never have a moment where you say “there’s nothing to eat.”

  • Grocery Sunday. Prepare for the week and just go. Everything in your week’s schedule will be more aligned if you begin the work week with a stocked fridge. Plain and simple.
  • Cook Once a Day. Preparing all of your food for the following day at night time sounds like it takes more time than it does. If you workout at night, we recommend preparing the next day’s meals as you’re enjoying your post work out feast.
  • Snacks Everywhere. Office, home, gym bag, car. Keep healthy snacks like healthy natural food bars, protein bars, and mixed nuts available all the time. Don’t get hungry, keep the furnace burning.
  • Mobile Food. Chances are it’s time to invest in a good sized cooler so you can bring a day’s worth of food wherever you’re going—this might sound extreme, but if you want to change, you must change your ways.

Gaining Weight For Skinny Guys

                                                 Image property of Run Keeper

Workout Routines for Men at The Gym to Build Muscle And Keep Track Of Your Progress

Objects in motion stay in motion. When you can see your progress, you will continue to stay in motion. This is absolutely key in managing the mental side of a dedicated training and dieting program.

  • Take a Selfie You know you want to. It’s ok. Using photos to track your process is an easy way to motivate yourself to continue on the right path. There’s nothing more satisfying than looking at your own amazing before and after photos.
  • Track Your Weight. This should be a no-brainer. If you’re gaining, keep doing what you’re doing. If not, time to step it up. Remember heavy workouts, calorie-rich foods, lots of rest.
  • Track Workouts. It’s not asking much of yourself to commit to tracking your gains in strength and ability to perform new exercises. This serves the dual purpose of correctly picking up where you left off, and encouraging you through the transparency of your progress. Be aware, be reminded and keep pushing.

On Tracking Calories. This one is tough. You’ll read a lot of advice on tracking calories when you’re trying to gain weight, but the simple fact is this becomes very tedious, very quick for many people. Our advice is calculate out what an ideal day is for your body, and form your dieting principles and portions around this. It is easier to incorporate principles, then track each and every bite of food. However, if you’re stuck and don’t see yourself gaining weight and think you’ve been eating enough, you may be overestimating and in that case should give counting calories a try to see if you’re really hitting your goals.

  • Each day, you must consume at least your body weight in pounds x 20kcal to gain weight. Think about that when you plan your meals.

Gaining Weight For Skinny Guys

Workout Plans for Men to Build Muscle

If you’re eating a sizably increased diet and you aren’t training in conjunction with that plan, you’re not going to like the results. You want to look bigger and stronger, not just bigger. This means a warm up and 3-5 sets of 5-6 repetitions, working at the upper end of your maximum output spectrum. Heavy lifts are key in gaining size and strength. Your muscles needs to be stressed past their max to achieve growth.

  • Olympic Lifts. Olympic lifts like cleans and deadlifts work major muscle groups, building full body strength and push your overall body into a growth state, you will definitely experience an increased appetite.
  • Free Weights. As opposed to machines which have a fixed motion, free weights force your body’s stabilizer muscles to join the fight. This builds functional strength. It is extremely important to build your form with lighter weight before risking injury jumping in with big weights.
  • Squat. Even if you’re not a big fan of other Olympic lifting, the squat simply cannot be ignored if growth is your goal. The squat works 85% of your body’s muscles in one movement and is known to increase testosterone production throughout the body.
  • Rest: the most overlooked nutrient. Protein, carbs from fruits and veggies, whole grains and stretching are all important to optimize your recovery, but SLEEP (8 hours+) is critical if you want to see gains. Your body grows when you rest it and allow it do so.

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All of this might sound like a lot of change, but if you want to transform your body. To build a bigger, stronger body, this is what it takes: discipline, lots of food,  exercise and rest. Add these principles to your life, stay honest with yourself about how well you’re sticking to them, track your progress and you won’t fail.

-Terry Asher


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Gym Junkies Founder & Editor in Chief at Gym Junkies LLC
I’m Terry and I’m here to help you achieve your fitness goals. I truly believe anyone can achieve the figure they want with the proper guidance. Through my extensive fitness blog, top fitness videos, leading workout supplements, and top selling eBooks, I have been able to help thousands of people online lose weight, tone up and get in shape. My passion is helping people all around the world change their lives for the better.
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  1. Hey Terry, you and the others on this site write amazing articles! I just recently started your home workout for beginners guide, and I can’t say thank you enough for making it 🙂

    But I have a question, my wife is naturally very skinny, never weighing more than 95 pounds. She hates the way she looks (even though I think she’s beautiful), and often refers to herself as nothing but bones. She wants to, more than anything, gain weight and muscle, and live a healthier life style. But neither of us know where to even begin with it.

    My question is, would the plan in this article be good for her to start with (even though its for men)? And if not, could you possibly point us in the right direction (meal plan, and workout wise) to get her started with gaining weight, and muscle?

    Again, thank you so much for the articles, and advice you guys give out.

    • Cory,

      Appreciate the kind words. I do think this article would give some guidance to the issue.

      However if you want a more personal approach, we can help you with a meal plan if you
      email us at

      Thanks for stopping by!


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