Home Body 9 Bulking Tips That Will Help You Reach Your Peak Potential

9 Bulking Tips That Will Help You Reach Your Peak Potential

Bulking is a fantastic way to gain muscle quickly and efficiently. It mainly involves consuming a large amount of calories and trying to burn them all away during exercise. Knowing the the most crucial bulking tips will ensure that the energy from those calories produces muscle growth instead of fat accumulation.

Man working out in the gym needing bulking tips

Most tend to bulk for 16 weeks around the winter months, trying to get ready for the spring and summer, where all that accumulated fat will be stripped away, leaving a body well-defined by weeks of hard work and dedication.

Bulking has many benefits, but it’s also difficult to get the hang of. After all, people aren’t very used to eating way more than they’re used to. Getting that calorie count up while still trying to bulk lean can be extremely difficult, and knowing what your routine should be isn’t as simple as it sounds. If you’re feeling as though you’re not getting the results you want, there could be numerous factors, and most of it boils down to just needing the right tips for bulking.

Are you looking to pack on the muscle and rise to peak performance? In that case, here are 9 bulking tips you’ll need to maximize your gains and get ready for the summer.

 

Set Your Goal

Set your bulking goal

One way to fail before you even start is by not having a goal in mind. It gives you something to strive for, it’s an indication to cool down a bit, and it’s essential for planning out your own progress.

Yes, the main goal for everyone is to get bigger and attain more muscle, but if you don’t have a proper idea of what that looks like, you might not be happy with the body you get by the end of the day.

An important aspect about setting your goal is to make sure it’s realistic. Don’t try to think of what you want to look like at the very peak of your fitness journey, but instead what you want after a steady set of weeks or months. Make sure you’re properly informed as to the amount of weight gained and training performed are both viable and healthy.

Unlike most forms of exercise and diet, bulking goals shouldn’t be measured in BMI, although that is very important and should be watched like a hawk. No, it should be measured in weight. I always recommend adding somewhere around 0.5 to 1.0 pounds to your body per week; maybe a little lower if you’re not very experienced. Set your goal for how long your bulk will last, say, 16 weeks and then come back to see how you did.

If you’re gaining weight way quicker than .5 to 1.0 pounds a week, maybe cut back on the calories and readjust your macros; similarly, make sure to increase these aspects if you feel like you’re not making any progress at all.

 

Find a Proper Training Program

Man watchging an online Training Program

The reason many people can’t reach their bulking goals is because they don’t have a good bulking training program. Unless you’re fairly educated in the world of fitness, I’ll always suggest finding a program online that’s right for you. You’ll find a litany of suggestions from experts who want to see you be the best that you can be. They’ll know how many calories you should consume, what areas you need to work out, and the best exercises to do so.

Stick to just one training program for about 16 weeks and you should be good to go. These regimens tend to be all-encompassing, but you can always add or subtract any exercises, especially if you’re worried about neglecting some areas of your body. They’re just guides, after all.

However, if you’re concerned about the same workouts becoming stale overtime, you should probably pick two compound training programs and run them for 8 weeks each.

 

Start Counting Calories

Counting calories while bulking - Vegetables and fruits

When it comes to a diet that requires calorie-dense meals, it’s very important that you start counting the calories you take in. This is especially true if you’re not getting your calories from any sort of supplements or meal replacements, as it can be easy to just consume with reckless abandon especially if you are on a dirty bulk. If you don’t, it can lead to large amounts of fat accumulation.

Make sure you keep track of how many calories you burn during your exercise routine. You should eat enough food to match that, and then make sure you add another 300 calories on top of that (the amount of calories you burn every day just being alive) to remain in surplus.

If you feel like you’re gaining weight too fast or too slow, you should adjust your calorie consumption accordingly.

Lastly, you should make sure you have a proper calorie tracker, not only to count the calories themselves, but to help you do an overview of what amount of calories is getting you the best results. You can use a free app like myfitnesspal for example.

 

Consume More Carbs and Proteins

Carbs and protein - balanced meal for bulking up

When it comes to bulking, your diet is just as essential as the actual exercise. Whether or not you decide to go lean or simply inhale whatever you can, one thing remains the same: you need to up your intake of both carbs and proteins. These are required in order to sustain the gains you want to build. This can already be a bit difficult as it is, but if you’re participating in lean bulking, you’re going to have to pile on the fact that you have to consume high-quality carbohydrates (oats, brown rice, quinoa, etc) and lean protein.

To make sure you don’t overstuff yourself, it’s important you take a look at potential supplements to your diet. Protein shakes are a classic way to get in both the carbs and proteins. You can also go for a meal replacement, and there are many advertised just for the fitness industry.

Bottom line: don’t skip on the carbs or proteins for the sake of an easier calorie intake.

It is easy to bulk up using fats like cocount oil or MCT oil, but your minimum required protein and carb intakes should be met.

 

Periodize Your Size and Strength Building

Size and Strength Building Calendar

Unlike the cutting and fat stripping you’ll do during the summer, you need to periodize your size and strength building. When it comes to the bulking season, the goal is to build up your size as well as your strength. Because of this, you need periodization, also known as systematic progression.

You should be cycling between each training modality if you want to have the best possible outcome. Strength training itself is cycled often; this is to improve your workout capacity, as well as saving your joints from becoming too strained.

While gaining muscle is all well and good, but if you want to shoot for maximum size, you’re going to have to put in a bit more effort. See, strength training required a lower amount of reps (around 2 to 6) at increased intensity and with a large amount of effort, as well as longer rest periods.

Training for maximum growth, however, calls for more intensity, higher volume training, and with minimal rest intervals. You also need to pick weights where you’ll reach “failure” within 6 to 10 reps. If you can reach past 10 reps, it’s not heavy enough, and if you can’t get at least 6, it’s too heavy.

Make sure to build that training volume. It should be at least 3-5 sets for every exercise. They should be at a higher intensity and only have a rest interval of 2 minutes, which is slightly longer than usual.

 

Don’t Neglect Your Weak Points

man lifting a barbell - Working on weak points during bulking

We all have those spots we neglect, whether it be consciously or unconsciously. There might even be parts you don’t realize you’re neglecting at all.

If you’d done some cutting and gotten a good look at yourself in the mirror, you may have noticed a few parts of your figure that you aren’t too happy with. It doesn’t matter if you are following the best bulking tips or not, if you are unsatisfied with how you look. Inspect yourself and try to see which areas of your body are lagging behind so you’ll know that you need to work on them in the future.

Find out which exercises are perfect for attacking that weak spot, and then the next time you bulk, make sure you’re putting in the calories to make up for it. Once you shred all that fat, you’ll feel good knowing that every part of you is in top shape.

 

Keep Up With Cardio

Man doing cardio while bulking

One of the biggest mistakes bodybuilders will do is to simply skip cardio training while bulking. There’s a lot of bias spread from uninformed fitness enthusiasts online, labeling cardio as a waste of time and wasting all the calories you’ve been gathering for your strength training.

This isn’t true. Cardio is a very important part of staying fit and healthy. Not only does it help you to build additional muscle, but it builds up your endurance and leads to a healthier heart. You could be the biggest guy in the gym with how much strength training you do, and yet still get winded after running a block. So  yeah, cardio is important.

The rower can really help build up your legs and lats, while a stationary bike with sprinting intervals can serve to build up your endurance and pump up your legs. A slow jog on an inclined treadmill would also do your body some good. Even a quick walk would be able to improve your blood flow and help your muscles recover.

You can go at your own pace, as cardio isn’t a bulker’s main focus. You don’t have to incorporate it as a large chunk of your routine; I’m not even saying you should do it every session. Just make sure you get some cardio in, as it will only do you good.

 

Use Supplements

Brutal Force Bulking Supplements

Supplements are an athlete’s best friend, and the same can definitely be said for those who bulk to get their gains. It’s all about finding the right ones. Since the supplement industry in the United States isn’t all that regulated, many of the cheap supplements you get may not be worth their salt, and they may not even contain some of the advertised ingredients. This is why checking reviews for anything online is very important.

There are supplements that assist with fitness in many different ways, such as helping you pack on the muscle, giving you more energy, increasing your strength, sharpening your focus, etc.

For bulking, protein shakes and meal replacements are your best friend. Pre-workout supplements can get a bad rap, but I believe that these can really help you to succeed. Not only do they have the calories, but their added effects tend to work pretty quickly and serve to give you more energy and strength during your workouts. If you’re going to get one of these, it’s a necessity that you get something that’s high in both carbs and protein, as those will support any muscle you’re building up.

Knowing which active ingredients are useful can be difficult, but that’s why we have the internet. Some of them you don’t even need to look through the supplement aisles to find. One great supplement is caffeine, as it gives you the energy to work out for longer periods of time and with more intensity. If you drink a cup of coffee just before you start to work out, you’re already improving your session by a good margin.

Check out the recommended best bulking supplements >>

 

Overlooked Bulking Tips: Recovery and Sleep

Man sleeping well

One of the most neglected pieces of fitness is the recovery process. This is true in both bulking and training in general. You may think you need to train every single day in order to achieve that dream body — after all, no pain, no gain, right? Well, no.

If you continue exercising without allowing your body the chance to recover, you’re just turning it against you, and it won’t matter how many bulking tips and tricks you know. Your body will be in a state of constant recovery. It will become catabolic, breaking down muscle, and it could very well lead to an injury.

If you’ve ever had a wonky sleep schedule and still tried to go about your routine, you may have noticed you still feel sore, despite your recovery time being much quicker. Sleep is crucial for your recovery process, not only for recovering from exercise, but building up muscle in general.

Sleep is also necessary to regulate your cortisol levels, which can directly affect your stress. It can also decrease your testosterone levels by 10% to 15%, which is a pretty big deal if you want to be able to reach your maximum potential. Men with more testosterone are able to build muscle quicker and exercise longer, after all.

Key takeaway: make sure you have adequate rest between sessions.

 

Takeaways

There’s much more we could go into when it comes to the intricacies of bulking and fitness in general, but hopefully these 9 points were able to help you understand the basics. While we all strive to get that dream body, practicing bulking and following rigorous training programs can be draining, so there’s nothing wrong with not being able to achieve your goal on time. Just as long as you strive to be better than you were the day before, you should be good to go. After all, improving oneself is a journey, not a race.

No matter how you decide to go about bulking, just remember to get plenty of sleep before and after, drink lots of water, and do your warm-up exercises to help you maximize those gains.