The age-old question: how can I go from skinny to muscular? If no matter what you’re doing seems to be working, try taking these tips into consideration. At first glance it’ll be the same “eat more, workout” gospel you’ve heard a million times, but I promise you, it goes deeper than that. I went from 140lbs at 6’2” to 180lbs in a pretty short amount of time, and with almost no extra body fat added. So, how do you gain weight if you are skinny? We’ll start with the first important yet frequently forgotten factor though – sleep.
It might not happen overnight, but… If you are not getting enough sleep you will not see results. Stop sleeping at 3:00AM, midnight or even 11:00PM. If you think sleeping at 3 and waking at 10 will give you your needed 7 hours of sleep, you’re wrong. Timing of sleep is everything. Having a consistent wake up and sleep time is vital.
During a workout, your muscles enter a state of catabolism, or breaking down. Directly after, your muscles build back up again with protein as a building block. That process is called anabolism. Next to protein, the most important thing to effective anabolism is rest. Your muscles need rest. Sitting at a desk or hanging out on the couch with friends is not rest – sleep is. Bodybuilders frequently take mid-day naps to really get their muscles booming.
The results I saw between getting 5 hours of sleep, 8 hours of sleep at odd wake/sleep cycles and 9 hours of healthy sleep + 1-2 hour naps is a world of difference. I cannot stress this enough! Start sleeping at 10:00, waking up at 7:00 and getting an hour nap – if your schedule permits it.
Nutrition & Hydration
Though it’s self-explanatory and simple, a whopping 75% of Americans surveyed are chronically dehydrated. This means they’re getting far below the recommended 8 cups/2L of water per day. To add to that, caffeinated, alcoholic, or diuretic-inducing beverages contribute even more to dehydration levels.
This means you need a whole cup of water every 1-2 hours. If the last time you had a glass of water was four hours ago, you’re behind. It’s shockingly easy to forget to drink enough water and only get 500mL-1L a day. Without water your body will not be able to synthesize protein and muscle nearly as well. Chances are, you’re part of the 75% who don’t get enough water.
To add to that, you need to sort out your diet. So, if you are skinny and you want to get big – getting 3000+ healthy calories a day for serious weight gain is essential. Making sure you get enough healthy fats, proteins and carbohydrates every day is something that’s easy to forget, but extremely important if you want to go from skinny to muscular.
If you really want to cover all your bases, opt to buy a good protein powder or mass-gainer and extra supplements like Creatine, BCAAs and Beta Alanine for even more effective results.
No duh, working out is obviously the biggest factor when it comes to becoming muscular. A concrete workout plan like a Starter Weight workout plan is vital if you want to bulk up without getting fat. Do plenty of compound exercises as your skinny body type benefits far more from that than isolation exercises. Get between 3-5 sessions per week with the sessions being between 1-2 hours each.
How Do Skinny People Gain Weight?
Sleep and hydration are super important if you want to go from skinny to muscular. Even if you have incredible nutrition and a solid workout plan, I promise you, you’ll get almost nowhere without covering those two bases. Of course diet and exercise are critical factors too, but you already knew that. You already knew about the rest and hydration part too, but there’s a huge chance you’re not doing both properly. I know I didn’t when I wasn’t seeing any results and when I did, the progress started rolling in!