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A Complete Guide On How To Gain Muscle Mass

Are you tired of trying tons of ways to build muscles? Things will never work for you no matter how hard you try. Well, you may be doing it all the wrong way.

I remember feeling the same way a few years back. You are not alone! Many try every possible training method to gain muscle mass but fail to see any result.

Here is a complete guide on gaining muscle mass the correct way.

How To Gain Muscle Mass

First, I have to tell you the truth! Building muscles requires a lot of dedication and effort. So if you think otherwise, you should stop thinking that way right now! 

The basic principle in gaining muscles is to take in more calories than you burn out. You need about 2800 calories to build one pound of muscle. 

Appropriate training can elevate this value, and you need to focus on both these aspects if you want to gain muscle mass.


Proper training is the bread and butter of gaining muscle mass. You’re not going to reach your target if you don’t lift any weights. Likewise, trying to achieve it with your diet alone will not work.


So what are the types of training exercises that will help you gain muscle mass? 

  • Low-incline presses using dumbbells or barbells
  • Squats
  • Rows
  • Deadlifts
  • Low-incline presses
  • Loaded carries

Increase Training Volume

It’s not only about doing the above training exercises. You need to increase your training volume gradually to reap its benefits.

So how are you going to do that? 

The training volume is the number of reps multiplied by the number of sets. You can start low and gradually increase the reps and sets, motivating you to increase further.

However, if you want to increase volume, you might have to go lower on the weights. It is because your trading training intensity with volume will result in an increased gain of muscle mass.

Focus On The Eccentric Action

The eccentric phase is the easy action when lifting weight, while the concentric phase is harder. According to the European Journal of Applied Physiology, focusing on the eccentric phase works better in triggering hypertrophy.

There are two ways to do this:

  • Incorporating eccentric-only variations into your training sessions.
  • Slowing down the eccentric phase of each training move

Sometimes, you’re not gaining muscle mass because of the type of supplements you take. Unfortunately, not all supplements work the same way. You need to read the list of ingredients to determine if it’s the one you’re looking for.

Creatine and protein powders, including meal replacement shakes for weight gain, are the most common forms of supplementation taken to gain muscle mass. In addition, multivitamins and fish oil also help in building muscles.


Nutrition: Foods That Help Gain Muscle

Your diet plays a significant role in muscle gain, weight gain, or even weight loss. It all boils down to what you put into your body and how much of it. 

However, eating just about anything and everything will not take you to your goals. Healthy eating is key to gaining muscle mass. Proteins play a critical role in this regard, so you need to focus on including them in your diet.

Here is a list of food items you should eat to gain muscle mass.

  • Potatoes
  • Eggs
  • Oats
  • White rice
  • Bananas
  • Coconut oil


These foods are nutritious in terms of protein content, and some of them give you a high level of energy.

Tips To Help Gain Muscle Mass

Now that you’ve figured out what to eat, how you eat it also matters. Below are a few tips that can help you gain muscle mass by eating the right way.

Eat Every Three Hours

Eating frequently will keep you full most of the time. However, not eating for a long time can make you feel hungry, and you tend to overeat. 

Try to include a few meals between breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Apart from this, you can have a meal post-workout or before bed. All of this will keep you full and result in fewer cravings.

Eat A Wholesome Meal For Breakfast

Eating a wholesome meal for breakfast keeps you full until lunchtime. It also gives you the energy that you need to complete your daily tasks. Incorporate omelets, cottage cheese, and smoothies to start your day with a healthy breakfast.

Include Protein In Every Meal

Protein is an essential nutrition source for building muscles. The standard is 1g of protein per 454 g of body weight. An easy way to get the required protein amount is to include a protein source in every meal you eat.

Here are some protein sources that you can include in your meals.

  • Protein including chicken, duck, and turkey
  • Red meat, including beef, lamb, and pork
  • Fish including sardines, tuna, salmon, and mackerel
  • Eggs
  • Dairy, including milk, yogurt, and cheese
  • Whey
  • Vegan options include lentils, seeds, tofu, and nuts
Eat Carbs Post-Workout

Your body uses its glycogen stores during a workout. Eating carbs after a workout helps replenish them. The rate at which glycogen stores are used depends on the type of activity and its intensity. 

For instance, your body uses more glycogen during endurance sports than the amount it uses during resistance sports.

Include Fruits And Vegetables In Every Meal

Fruits and vegetables have very low-calorie levels that keep you feeling full without gaining weight or fat. They are also packed with essential vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants that help digestion.

Fruits and veggies are also low in carbs which prevents conditions like bloating.

Drink Lots Of Water

When working out, you lose a lot of water through sweating. This condition can impair muscle recovery and prevent you from gaining muscle mass. Drinking water helps you achieve the water that you lost while working out.

Water keeps you full, preventing you from feeling hungry often and overeating as a result. 

Eat Whole Foods 90% Of The Time

Whole foods help increase muscle mass. In addition, these foods give you more energy to use during your workout sessions. However, ensure that the whole foods you consume are not processed or refined. Instead, they should be as close to their natural state as possible

Some examples of whole foods you can eat include poultry, fish, eggs, fresh meat, fruits, vegetables, pulses, oats, rice, and quinoa.

Include Healthy Fats In Your Meals

Eating healthy fats improves fat loss and digests slowly in your body. Eating healthy fats directly contributes to building more lean muscle mass. They also help absorb essential vitamins in your body and give you the energy and hormones for muscle growth.

Include healthy fats, including olive oil, avocado oil, and omega-3 oils, in your diet, and avoid margarine and all forms of artificial trans-fats


How Fast Can You Gain Muscle Mass?

Even if you’re religiously following a training schedule, you might not notice muscle gain immediately, especially initially. 

Most beginners experience about 2-4 pounds of muscle gain per month. More advanced lifters can expect about 1-2 pounds of muscle gain each month.

How Long Does It Take To Build Muscle Mass?

Building muscle mass is a slow and steady process. Therefore, you need the patience to see any visible results. It can take up to three to four weeks for a visible change in muscle mass. 

You should be able to see some solid results once you reach the twelfth week. However, it could even take up to 6 months for some to see actual results in gaining muscle mass. 

Consistency and patience are crucial to gaining muscle mass.

Factors That Indicate You’re Gaining Muscles

You’ll notice the following changes in your body that indicate that you’re on the right track to gaining muscle mass.

  • You’ll gain more weight.
  • You will build more strength and feel fitter.
  • Your muscles will look ‘swole.’


Gaining muscle mass could be long and extensive, and it requires some real effort and dedication on your part. However, you can achieve your fitness goals by following a stringent diet and intensive training sessions.

Remember to follow the above tips to gain muscle, and you will soon achieve your fitness goals.


How Often Should I Work Out To Gain Muscle Mass?

Your best bet is to work out at least three days a week to gain muscle mass. The minimum number of days required to maximize muscle growth is two days a week.

What Is The Best Time To Workout?

The best time of the day to work out is from 2 pm to 6 pm. Your body temperature is at its highest during this period, and it is when your body is most ready for workouts, resulting in effective training sessions.

What Increases Muscle Growth?

High protein foods are some of the most important for gaining muscle mass. In addition, you also need carbs and fats to give you the energy to increase muscle mass.


If you are ready to take your fitness to the next level, check out the Team ICON Training App today!