How to Gain Weight
By PW Nutritionist Steph Evans
When there is so much talk on weight loss and the community built around female figures it can often leave you pretty lost when it comes to gaining weight. Let me tell you, weight gain for women (or men) isn’t easy, and its impact on both your physical and mental health should not be dumbed down – especially if you are coming from a place of disordered eating habits. That being said, healthy weight gain IS possible! By staying focused and being consistent you will soon be growing that figure and building the booty you always dreamed of. If you are in two minds about gaining weight, check if this is for you!
If you are considering how to gain weight, remember it isn’t just about stuffing your face. When it comes to gaining weight healthily it comes down to two factors: food and fitness. Not only are you going to need a lot of food to gain weight, but you will also need to switch up your exercise routine and get lifting those weights. If you haven’t already then now is the time to get investing in that gym membership of yours!
No. 1: Food to Gain Weight
No doubt the most important factor when talking about how to gain weight, is food. Yes, girls you are going to have to eat, and eat A LOT – especially if you want to grow that booty of yours! In order to gain weight, you are going to have to be in a calorie surplus which basically means eating more calories than what you burn each day. Some of you make think this is easy; however, this is often the major fall back for women trying to gain weight. You may be surprised at how little you usually eat – especially if you are someone who is always on the go!
If you have no problem with counting calories, then I would recommend downloading a useful app like My Fitness Pal to track what you are eating. This is a useful tool which can help make tracking your food intake much easier! It is recommended that aiming for a consistent weight gain of around 0.5-1kg per week is adequate, which will mean you must consume around 250-500kcal extra than what you burn each day (and I mean every day!). This often requires conscious effort which can be made easier by splitting your calories out equally throughout the day. For example, aiming for 3 big meals and a few snacks will be a good starting point!
Now, I don’t want you to go about this by filling up with pizza, burgers and ice cream. By all means enjoy these pleasures a little more than usual - but focusing on a healthy balanced diet for the bulk of your meals is essential to ensure you are both looking and feeling good! Increasing the amount of carbs and protein in your diet will be essential to have you gaining both mass and muscle! Also, including more healthy fats into your diet, such as peanut butter, avocados and olive oil is essential if you are looking to gain back your period. These fats are easy foods to gain weight without adding much volume of food to your meals!
“Help – it’s still too much food!”
You may find yourself getting full a lot more than you are used to and sometimes it is hard to constantly stop for a snack if you have things to do. This is where weight gain shakes can come in handy! Not only are protein shakes good to have post-workout to optimise muscle growth, but they can also make good, high calorie snack choices throughout the day – without having to munch away, feeling too full and sluggish!
We suggest purchasing a good quality protein powder - like our Whey Protein Concentrate - and mixing 4 scoops with 400ml plant-based milk two times a day in between meals! Whey Protein may be the most common protein powder for weight gain but if you are allergic to dairy (or are vegan) then plant-based sources such as our Vegan Blend are ideal too! Optimise your protein shakes for weight gain by trying out one of our epic weight gainer smoothies with our brand new Creatine product, fats and carbs!
Blueberry Muscle Recovery Smoothie: 335kcal, 36g protein, 15g carbs, 6g sugar, 13g fat, 5.5g fibre
- 3 scoops Vanilla Whey Protein Concentrate
- 1 scoop Creatine Monohydrate*
- ½ cup frozen blueberries
- 1tbsp almond butter
- 1tbsp Greek yoghurt
- 1 cup coconut milk
*Creatine is a compound which is often added to weight gainers as it can increase muscle mass over time. It is good for those who are hitting the gym and looking to build strength as it allows you to have more energy and work harder for short bouts of high intensity exercise!
Now you have food down to a ‘T’ it is time to talk about fitness. After all, you are going to want to build some muscle – and muscle weighs more than fat!
First off - forget about the cardio! Yes, you heard it, there is no need to spend time at the gym running on a treadmill or slouching over the stationary bike as ultimately you will be hindering all that effort you made with eating more. Instead you are heading to the weight area and you are going to need to focus on building strength! If you are new to the gym, then do your research on what exercises are best to perform. For example, if you are looking to build a butt to be proud of you are going to want to learn how to hip thrust and deadlift correctly! If you can, I would suggest asking one of the trainers in the gym to help with form, as you don’t want to risk leaving with an injury before you’ve even started! The key to building muscle is in progressive overload (ie. Lifting heavy at lower reps) rather than using light weights at higher reps. For more information on how to build muscle in the gym check out this article: How to Build Muscle.
If you don’t have access to a gym then there are ways to increase muscle mass at home, using body weight and dumbbell exercises. Try out our 4 moves to get a perky bum workout!
So there you have it team! The not so secret secrets on how to gain weight the healthy way! Stay focused and determined and you will reach your goals in no time!