Optimum Nutrition Gold. Muscletech Nitro-Tech. These are some common product names to help you “get big” or “gain mass.”
Pick up any magazine on bodybuilding tips, and you’ll be overcome with the latest protein powders, bars, and shakes that may increase your muscle, but will most certainly drain your wallet.
The truth is, everybody is different. Two different people picking up either of those products will have completely different results based on their metabolism, level of physical activity, and a host of other elements.
When I was in High School, I ate the same lunch as my friend every day. I asked what he had for dinner, and it sounded like he ate like a horse. Neither of us ever had breakfast. But he was skinny as a rail, and couldn’t gain weight to save his life.
Me, on the other hand, well, let’s say I was a bit different.
Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” bodybuilding diet. Only general rules apply. Protein will help you build muscle. There are good fats and bad fats. There are good carbs and bad carbs.
Depending on where you are, and where you want to be, your dietary requirements are going to be different.
If you happen to be skinny as a rail, like my high school buddy, then I’d suggest to eat as much as possible, and go heavy on the proteins and complex carbs. Protein shakes are always good.
Throw in some peanuts, as they fat contained in peanuts is excellent, as well as the fats contained in other nuts. Almonds are great. Nutritionally dense, and portable. Don’t be shy around meats like chicken fish.
If on the other hand, you are more like I was in high school, you might want to stay away from the unhealthy fats like anything fried. Take a shot of olive oil every morning.
Olive oil has some significant benefits of increasing your bodies natural production of leptin, which many researchers are starting think holds the secret to fat loss. The more leptin your body produces, the more you burn body fat for energy.
Ok, you don’t have to pound a shot of olive oil, but you might want to add it to your low carb protein shake.
Stick with leaner meats, like chicken breasts, and fish.
I knew a guy I trained with once that went on a diet of strictly boiled chicken breasts and broccoli for a month before a competition. Doesn’t sound very appealing, I know, but man this guy was ripped.
I this is going to sound a little out, but start to pay attention to your energy levels. If you ever feel that “sugar crash” during the day ease up on the sugars and eat some longer lasting carbs like veggies and grains.
If your energy level is pretty good throughout the day, don’t worry about it. Just keep on lifting, and get plenty of rest.