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  1. #1
    Senior Member sarsparilla's Avatar
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    How to GAIN weight

    Let me start off by saying that I've done a good amount of searching on this topic and have found some interesting sites with good information, but most of it is for bodybuilders and weight lifters... which I am not. They all say to put a lot of emphasis on lifting and leave cardio basically out of a workout. That's fine for them, but my I'm a XC-mtb racer, so leaving cardio out of the picture is obviously not my ideal way for me to gain weight.

    I am 17 years old, 6'1" (186cm) and tip the scale at a little less than 138lbs. I have virtually no fat on my body. How can I go about gaining weight without having to let up on the cylcling. I'm know that diet will play a huge role in it, but I just don't know what to eat. I don't want food that will be bogging me down. I don't expect to become huge, or even get to a point where I'm not considered skinny but right now I feel like my lack of weight and muscle is hindering my performance on the bike. Any information that you guys need on my lifestyle and I'll be happy to give it to you, I'm just not sure what I need to tell you. I ride 6 out of the 7 days a week, almost always pushimg myself in a ride unless it's a recovery ride.

    Any input is much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Work hard, Play hard forum*rider's Avatar
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    I weight lift every other day and do atleast some cardio(riding of course) everyday.

    When i was in "weight gain" mode to get into a good weight class for wrestling, I was taking whey protein. 1g of protein for 1lb of body weight. The protein along with the weight training had me gaining about 1lb a week. Just kept going till I was about 155lb(give or take a few) and then toned down the weights and did more cardio to get rid of some of the flab.

    edit: I heard broccoli was really good for you when you are trying to bulk up. Something about it having lots of vitamins? Can anyone verify this?

    Koffee will be all over this thread, but thats my 2c.

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    There could be other factors. How well do you sleep at night? Just curious

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    eat 5 to 6 small meals a day instead of three big squares. Like the above poster said, eat lots of protein. It's best to get this from lean meats like chicken or turkey or a protein supplement like whey powder. Also, to gain weight, you have to eat more calories per day than you burn, so here's a formula that should give you a decent idea of how many calories per day you consume. Eat a few hundred more than that a day (and don't eat "empty calories", go with lean meats, whole wheat breads and pastas, fish, fruit, etc...)

    One way to calculate your caloric requirement is with the Harris-Benedict Formula:
    I use the following formula(for males):
    66 + (6.3 x body weight in lbs.) + (12.9 x height in inches) - (6.8 x age in years)
    This gives you your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
    Now that you know your BMR, multiply your BMR by your activity multiplier from below:

    Activity Multiplier
    Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)
    Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)
    Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)
    Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)
    Extr. active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job

    Your BMR X Activity Level = Calories Needed for maintenance : what you need to sustain your body at status quo. If you want to lose weight, subtract 500 calories a day to lose 1 pound per week. Subtract 1000 to lose 2 pounds per week. It is not recommended to go below a 1000 calorie deficit. It is also not recommended to go below 2000 calories a day if you are trying to maintain / build muscle mass. I recommend you start out a fat loss program at a 500 calorie deficit, try that for a couple of weeks, then, if you arent getting the results you want, cut 250 off, try that for a couple of weeks, and repeat until you find the level that works for your body. After a few months, change it; your body will become accustomed to a caloric level and needs it to be altered once in a while.

  5. #5
    Senior Member sarsparilla's Avatar
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    Thanks pearcem, the formula seems to make sense, saying that I need to consume a little over 3000 calories a day. I'm not sure about the last part that you put into your post though. I'm not trying to lose fat at all. In my original post I said that I have virtually no body fat to begin with. According to what you said, 3000 calories would maintain my weight. I would imagine that this means I would eventually have to add more calories... correct me if I'm wrong.

    timhines, I sleep pretty well, I get to sleep around 9:30p and wake up around 6:00a. And when I'm asleep I don't wake up for anything (unless I have to go to the bathroom)

  6. #6
    Name's Ash ...housewares Doctor Morbius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarsparilla
    ... How can I go about gaining weight without having to let up on the cylcling.
    Seriously? Get older. Chances are you'll notice your metabolism slowing in your late 20's to early 30's - even if you stay fairly active. By mid-40's you'll be wondering how to take it all off again.
    I did not achieve this position in life by having some snot-nosed punk leave my cheese out in the wind. - Ed Rooney


    It's not that I'm lazy. I'm just highly motivated to RELAX!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member sarsparilla's Avatar
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    ha, I still have over 20 yrs to get to mid-40s though. I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

  8. #8
    So say we all.
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    Nah, the first one hits you around 25. It sucks.

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    I just copy/pasted, so ignore those last two sentences, they were from the origional article and don't apply to you. Earlier, all i was saying that you want to gain the weight in mostly muscle and lean mass. you probablly don't want to gain a bunch of fat, right? It would be better to get weight that benefits your riding and general physique. Some fat is a good thing, but that's not all you want to add on.

  10. #10
    Climbing Fool terrymorse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Morbius
    Seriously? Get older. Chances are you'll notice your metabolism slowing in your late 20's to early 30's - even if you stay fairly active. By mid-40's you'll be wondering how to take it all off again.
    Don't give the kid false hope. At 16, I weighed 135. My weight hasn't changed since then, and I'm 47.

    People would tell me "wait 'til you're 40". Yeah, right.
    Managing Director, Undiscovered Country Tours

  11. #11
    Senior Member sarsparilla's Avatar
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    Pearcem, I figured that it was along those lines, just wanted to make sure. Yes you are right, I want weight from muscle/lean mass not just dead weight. Thanks for all the info guys, I'll be sure to take it to heart and I'll let you know how my progress goes.

  12. #12
    RIP Shiznaz. DoshKel's Avatar
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    I have the same problem...except I am slowly finding the cure. Right now I weigh 120 up from 117 (a year ago), and did it by weight training. For me...weight training was the ONLY thing that got my weight up. I tried everything from binge eating to sucking down pure olive oil. When I said I binged...I really did also heh. I would finish like a pint of soy ice cream, a box of Kashi GoLean Crunch! and 1/2 gallon of soy milk...all in one sitting. I stoped that though because I felt like a bulimic heh. I still ate BIG (around 3,500-4,000 a day), but didn't binge.

    Anyways...the moral of the story is eat BIG and weight train. Hopefully you will start gaining soon.

    Cheers.

  13. #13
    Work hard, Play hard forum*rider's Avatar
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    In addition to my above post, I'm 15. So I'm still growing alot.

    You'll probably gain at a slower weight than I will.

  14. #14
    Stand For Something mntbikedude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarsparilla
    Let me start off by saying that I've done a good amount of searching on this topic and have found some interesting sites with good information, but most of it is for bodybuilders and weight lifters... which I am not. They all say to put a lot of emphasis on lifting and leave cardio basically out of a workout. That's fine for them, but my I'm a XC-mtb racer, so leaving cardio out of the picture is obviously not my ideal way for me to gain weight.

    I am 17 years old, 6'1" (186cm) and tip the scale at a little less than 138lbs. I have virtually no fat on my body. How can I go about gaining weight without having to let up on the cylcling. I'm know that diet will play a huge role in it, but I just don't know what to eat. I don't want food that will be bogging me down. I don't expect to become huge, or even get to a point where I'm not considered skinny but right now I feel like my lack of weight and muscle is hindering my performance on the bike. Any information that you guys need on my lifestyle and I'll be happy to give it to you, I'm just not sure what I need to tell you. I ride 6 out of the 7 days a week, almost always pushimg myself in a ride unless it's a recovery ride.

    Any input is much appreciated.
    I understand how you feel. At age 21 I weighed in at 130 lbs. For sure getting older helped but also learning how to eat correctly to gain and also learning how to lift weights to put on muscle was the rest of the story. Lifting and biking are my two passions. You don't have to give up either. The best information diet wise and getting the right split will probably still come from a weightlifting site like. Bodybuilding.com.

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    of course it comes down to how much you eat in a day but forcing extra food in every day is tough to do. Weight training is buy far the best means of gaining mass and a good side effect is increased appetite. At 14 i was 130lbs and slowly filled out til a point, but it was weight training that gave me the gains I was looking for. DIdnt grow an inch taller in HS(darn genetics) but put on 50 lbs of mass which was not genetics(my whole family is a bunch of boney skinny waisted folk).


    I would say alteast some weight gainer or protein powder but only if you are going to maintain/increase your activity.
    -mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by sarsparilla
    Let me start off by saying that I've done a good amount of searching on this topic and have found some interesting sites with good information, but most of it is for bodybuilders and weight lifters... which I am not. They all say to put a lot of emphasis on lifting and leave cardio basically out of a workout. That's fine for them, but my I'm a XC-mtb racer, so leaving cardio out of the picture is obviously not my ideal way for me to gain weight.

    I am 17 years old, 6'1" (186cm) and tip the scale at a little less than 138lbs. I have virtually no fat on my body. How can I go about gaining weight without having to let up on the cylcling. I'm know that diet will play a huge role in it, but I just don't know what to eat. I don't want food that will be bogging me down. I don't expect to become huge, or even get to a point where I'm not considered skinny but right now I feel like my lack of weight and muscle is hindering my performance on the bike. Any information that you guys need on my lifestyle and I'll be happy to give it to you, I'm just not sure what I need to tell you. I ride 6 out of the 7 days a week, almost always pushimg myself in a ride unless it's a recovery ride.

    Any input is much appreciated.
    Like everyone else said, you gotta eat more than you burn - that's obvious. However, if you're serious about gaining weight, you're simply going to have to consider backing off on the cardio for a while to reduce your caloric expenditure and give yourself the chance to put the weight on.

    You're at the point where your body can't do everything at once. Gaining mass and endurance are unfortunately pretty much mutually exclusive goals, which is why you'll need to set up a periodization scheme to allow improvement in different and often opposing performance areas. One recovery day once in a while isn't going to cut it. That's why there's offseasons for athletes. Football players, for example, develop virtually all of their mass and strength gains in offseason training. They know it's almost impossible to gain in season and training during that time is primarily rehabilitative and maintenence.

    If you're xc racing, you need to first figure out why you want to gain weight and how it's going to benefit your racing performance. Then set up a periodization scheme to achieve the goal at the appropriate phase in your training cycle. Read up - there's tons of published material out there pertaining to endurance sports and periodization. Bompa is a good place to start for classical periodization.

    Naturally, after you achieve the weight gain you'll need switch gears and retrain to get your conditioning back up to where it was with the new bodymass. Hopefully the net effect down the road will be a bigger, stronger, more powerful you with just as much or better endurance than before. Good luck

  17. #17
    Name's Ash ...housewares Doctor Morbius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by terrymorse
    Don't give the kid false hope. At 16, I weighed 135. My weight hasn't changed since then, and I'm 47.

    People would tell me "wait 'til you're 40". Yeah, right.
    You're one of the lucky ones actually. I'd love to go back to my College Sophomore weight of 185.

    One of the main reasons people gain or stay the same over the years is due to genetics, You and Sarsp most likely have been blessed with an Ectomorph body type. Chances are you'll be much healthier in the long run than the bulk of the population and you'll excel at endurance related activities as opposed to burst sports. Myself, I've been blessed with a combination of two body types - Endomorph and Mesomorph. I can gain weight (including muscle) pretty easily but I never have a ripped look and it takes rediculously low calorie levels to lose weight. That, unfortunately, is accompanied by severe headaches due to hypogycemia (sugar problems run in my family). I thought cycling for 8 - 10 hours a week would help me lose weight but I ended up gaining about 25 pounds instead. My quads are now the same size as they were when I used to do heavy squats and bodybuilding back in the day. Weird.
    Last edited by Doctor Morbius; 05-23-05 at 10:32 PM.
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    It's not that I'm lazy. I'm just highly motivated to RELAX!!

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    im 22 yrs and just weigh 110lbs. That's not good for me. Doctor Morbius is right. It could be genetics as my mom is Ectomorph as well. Im really looking forward to gain weight as well. I have tried some weight gaining drinks but didnt help much. My sleeping hours are terrible. I normally slept at 1-2am and woke up around 9-10am.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cipollini
    im 22 yrs and just weigh 110lbs. That's not good for me. Doctor Morbius is right. It could be genetics as my mom is Ectomorph as well. Im really looking forward to gain weight as well. I have tried some weight gaining drinks but didnt help much. My sleeping hours are terrible. I normally slept at 1-2am and woke up around 9-10am.
    It never fails to crack me up when skinny guys complain they can't gain weight, and think they've made a decent attempt at it by choking down a "MegaMonsterMass 8000" once a day for a week or so.

    Dude skip the weightgainer shakes & eat. A lot. often. Hi protein hi carbs hi fat hi veggies hi fiber hi everything. Seriously, people don't understand a proper weight *gain* diet is almost as tough to stick to as a weight loss diet. Trying to eat a consistent 4000+ kcals every day week in week out is hard. It takes planning and lots of cooking. Like a costco sized pack of chicken a week. Several large baked potatoes a day. Steak every day. Half gallon whole milk a day. Two bags of Costco mixed veggies a week. Fistful of fish oil caps for the efa's. You get the picture.

    Gotta hit the weight room too. Maybe cut back on the cycling for a while. As an ecto, you're never gonna be able to put on bodymass as easily as a meso or endo, but it can be done. It just takes the same amount of discipline for an ecto to gain as it does for an endo to lose...

  20. #20
    Bikema > Karma HelloMoto's Avatar
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    22 years old, 5'11", 127lbs.... and rising.

    For as many metabolism-boosters as there are on the market, there aren't any that I've found that slow it down (that aren't illegal narcotics). So the only hope us underweight young guys have is eating more than your body can burn in a day. Yes, it is possible to drink a half gallon of whole milk in 3-4 hours. I do it every day at work. But your best bet to gain wight is go see a dietician. Tell them what you want to accomplish, and they'll give you the best way to get there.

  21. #21
    RIP Shiznaz. DoshKel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dodgy
    It never fails to crack me up when skinny guys complain they can't gain weight, and think they've made a decent attempt at it by choking down a "MegaMonsterMass 8000" once a day for a week or so.

    Dude skip the weightgainer shakes & eat. A lot. often. Hi protein hi carbs hi fat hi veggies hi fiber hi everything. Seriously, people don't understand a proper weight *gain* diet is almost as tough to stick to as a weight loss diet. Trying to eat a consistent 4000+ kcals every day week in week out is hard. It takes planning and lots of cooking. Like a costco sized pack of chicken a week. Several large baked potatoes a day. Steak every day. Half gallon whole milk a day. Two bags of Costco mixed veggies a week. Fistful of fish oil caps for the efa's. You get the picture.

    Gotta hit the weight room too. Maybe cut back on the cycling for a while. As an ecto, you're never gonna be able to put on bodymass as easily as a meso or endo, but it can be done. It just takes the same amount of discipline for an ecto to gain as it does for an endo to lose...
    Its so true heh. I've realized that if I want to be big, I got live big. That means eating, lifting and thinking big. Talking to teenage bodybuilders about bulking has really opend my eyes also. My best friend is a bodybuilder and he...freakin'...eats when bulking. There are days when he would go as high as 8,000 calories a day. How they do this with "clean" food is beyond me though. I guess, at least for me, was that I always had the fear over packing on too much fat...thus hurting me rather than helping. What my friend told me was that when I am as skinny as I am at 5% body fat and zilch muscle, a little fat might not be such a bad thing heh. Still trying to get that through my head though....

    Cheers.

  22. #22
    Senior Member WJ13US's Avatar
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    You might want to check out a book called "Beyond Brawn" its a HIT (High Intensity Training) program for what is called "hard gainers" Its for people who don't really have the genetics to become "big." It worked well for me. Look at www.hardgainer.com

    Bill

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