How to Build Muscle Without Eating More

Health & FitnessExercise & Meditation

  • Author Bryant Towell
  • Published June 5, 2012
  • Word count 493

Nutrition is the most important part of how to build muscle. You can train yourself into the ground, but everyone who knows how to build muscle knows that eating right is essential. Lifting weights breaks down muscle tissue, but it takes plenty of protein, calories, and rest to make it grow bigger and stronger than before. However, many people don't have the time or opportunity to eat extra meals throughout the day. Here are a few tips on how to build muscle without actually eating more food.


Shakes are a convenient, easy way to get extra calories and protein. The basis of any good protein shake is a good whey protein powder - the most popular supplement for people who know how to build muscle. There are tons on the market to choose from, but you need one that has around twenty-five grams of protein per scoop.

If you're struggling to gain muscle mass, you should add in some extra calories, as well. Many people like to mix their protein powders with milk instead of water. If you can handle the lactose, go for it! Other foods that mix well with protein shakes are peanut butter, bananas and other soft fruits, and even dried oatmeal.

You'll make things easier on yourself if you blend the day's shakes in advance in the morning or the night before. Take them with you to class, work, or meetings, and your body will always have the nutrients it needs to grow.

Sneaking in Extra Protein

Shakes aren't the only way to add extra protein to your daily diet. To build more muscle without actually eating more meals, try adding protein powder to the ones you're already eating. Whey protein mixes well in oatmeal, the milk that goes on your cereal, and even in the batters of baked goods.

Don't want to go crazy on the protein powder? Try adding more dairy to your diet. Drinking an extra few glasses of milk is easier than eating another meal. Yogurt and cottage cheese also make great, protein-packed additions to your shakes.

Add Some Fat

Fat is extremely valuable for people who struggle to eat enough. While protein and carbs only have four calories per gram, fat has nine! The healthiest sources of fat include peanut butter, olive oil, avocados, and nuts. Try mixing these foods into your current meals and shakes.

Post-Workout Recovery

After an intense training session, your body is primed to soak up nutrients and start repairing muscle tissue. Instead of adding another inconvenient meal to your day, down a post-workout recovery shake as soon as you're done at the gym.

The basics of any good recovery drink are fast-digesting carbs and proteins. Mix your whey powder with your favorite sugary sports drink for an extra hit of calories. Don't worry about gaining body fat from the sugar, either - this is the one time of day where your body can really put it to use!

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