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Gaining Muscle Without Gaining Weight

Sally Perkins explains how paying close attention to what you eat and how you work out can help you to bulk up while burning fat.

Unfortunately, gaining bulk often means gaining weight at the same time. Many bodybuilders struggle to find that perfect balance between diet and exercise that allows them to shed weight while still growing stronger without stressing the system. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, paying close attention to what you eat and how you work out can help you to bulk up while burning fat.


While consuming too many calories is never a good idea, you should also avoid eating too little. Too few calories, mainly from protein-rich foods, can result in a loss of muscle mass. This can lower your metabolic rate, which in turn makes it more challenging to keep weight off after you have lost it. Too many bodybuilders find themselves falling into a vicious cycle of dieting that makes it nearly impossible to maintain an ideal weight.

It would help if you consumed enough calories when bulking up, but those calories need to come from the right foods. Packing your diet full of refined sugars and saturated fats may help you to gain weight in the short term, but you will not be doing your muscles any favours.

The best foods that you can eat to improve muscle gains are those that are low in fat and high in protein. Your body needs to be able to replace the protein that is naturally lost by muscle cells each day. Red meat is an okay meal choice every once in a while, but overeating red meat may increase your risk of developing heart disease or certain types of cancer. Lean proteins such as fish and poultry are a better choice for healthy muscle development. Vegetarians and vegans can get their protein from sources such as leafy greens, nuts and seeds, beans, and more.

Strength Training

To gain muscle mass, you need to do much more than switch to a high protein diet. It is essential to exercise three to five times a week using a routine that includes moderate to intense strength training. Lifting heavier weights using fewer repetitions is the key to growing muscles larger. It is also important to remember that, while it may be tempting to concentrate solely on the upper body, you should never skip out on leg day.


While strength training helps you to add bulk, cardio helps you to lose weight safely and effectively. Running, jogging, swimming, and other activities that get your heart pumping are all great for burning unwanted calories. Not only will these exercises help you to shed pounds, but they will also improve your stamina, lung capacity, cardiovascular health, and much more. It would help if you tried to include at least twenty to thirty minutes of cardio in each workout.

If you want to lose weight while bulking up, the key is through a careful diet and regular exercise. With a little bit of patience and dedication, you can make 2018 the year that you achieve the toned physique that you have always wanted.

Page Reference

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  • PERKINS, S. (2018) Gaining Muscle Without Gaining Weight [WWW] Available from: [Accessed

About the Author

Sally Perkins is a professional freelance writer with many years of experience across many different areas. She made a move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, Sally enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family, and travelling as much as possible.