How much calories do you consume while bulking?

  • tieske1983

    Posts: 7

    Sep 06, 2012 10:11 AM GMT
    Hey there,

    I'm about to start a bulk cycle and some advice would be great!
    One of my main concerns is how much I should eat to maximize muscle gain and minimize fat gains. On many websites I read that you should just eat everything that's in sight. Well, I don't think is a very healthy way of bulking so I'd rather skip that. On this website I see some nutrition advice for bulking at 2200 and 2600 kcal per day. This seems a bit on the low side for me as with my stats my BMR is already around 2700kcal per day.

    I was wondering how much you guys eat to bulk up.
    I'm 161 pounds and 5f10.

    Another question: do you minimize cardio during a bulk (because you don't want to burn the calories, instead you need them to build your muscles)?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 06, 2012 12:50 PM GMT
    Eat 500 calories over what you burn each day to gain a pound each week. Through a calculator online my maintenance is about 3,200 so I eat around 3,700 a day and it seems to work out well
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    Sep 06, 2012 12:53 PM GMT
    I wouldn't say bulking but I'm trying to gain lean muscle. I eat about 3,500 calories a day.
  • rafiki87

    Posts: 331

    Sep 06, 2012 1:40 PM GMT
    Caloric calculation: BMR + day-to-day energy expenditure + training energy expenditure + surplus.

    Holy jeepers, batman, is your body a Ferrari? I think 2700 kcal is pretty high for a BMR. Basal Metabolic Rate is really the amount of energy your body needs to keep itself from shutting down. It should be in the 1700 kcal range for you.

    Maybe the calculator you used included your day-to-day energy expenditure to the BMR. icon_redface.gif

    Supposing, you're doing medium to high load weight training, I'd throw in 750 kcals for that workout.

    Now, the question of surplus. People's bodies react differently to caloric surpluses. Some don't need a lot to trigger lean weight gain, some do. So find out what that amount is for your body.

    As it stands, your total before surplus is 2450.


    Tip on increasing your calorie in-take: don't rush the changes too quickly. Find out how much you're eating to begin with then slowly increase it by 250 kcals per fortnight, that way you can be assured that your weight gain is mostly lean body mass instead of fat.

    With a huge jump in calories, your body won't know what to do with it, and so that excess energy is stored as fat.


    Cardio is good to keep while bulking, though at minimal intensities. It's used to flush out lactic acid build-up (aka muscle soreness from training) caused by all the lifting you're doing.


    Did I get all of the questions?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 06, 2012 2:16 PM GMT
    Mine is 2400 per day icon_smile.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 06, 2012 2:26 PM GMT
    Not sure, but I know it's never enough... OP is cute. icon_biggrin.gif
  • tieske1983

    Posts: 7

    Sep 06, 2012 3:48 PM GMT
    Thanks guys (thanks JR_RJ ;-))!

    I indeed made a little mistake. My BMR is 1734 and in order to maintain weight I should consume about 2750 kcals. I don't want to rush things so I start with 2 weeks of 3000kcals in order to see what that does, I can alway up them when nothing changes :-)

    On a side note, what are your opinions about how to work out during a "bulk"? I was kind of interested in the Realjock 12 week muscle-building program but it is in some ways opposite of what I always read about working out for building muscles (i.e. rep range I always use is 8-12 but this program suggests 16-20 for a lot of exercises; they also suggest a LOT of cardio which can stand bulking up in the way)...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 06, 2012 3:51 PM GMT
    Here is the calculator that I use. It's geared towards the intermittent fasting/Leangains approach but you may still find it useful.

    http://www.1percentedge.com/ifcalc/
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 06, 2012 4:34 PM GMT
    you guys notice that your digestive system is hard to handle all the extra food? I have a small stomach, doesn't hold much. Feels like totally stuffing myself when I try thr RJ 2300 cal meal plan.
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    Sep 06, 2012 5:32 PM GMT
    4,500 a day but I am at 260lb and 6'1"
  • tieske1983

    Posts: 7

    Sep 06, 2012 5:33 PM GMT
    FlyGuyAFga saidyou guys notice that your digestive system is hard to handle all the extra food? I have a small stomach, doesn't hold much. Feels like totally stuffing myself when I try thr RJ 2300 cal meal plan.


    Just try to start off not too fast. Maybe +100kcal per 5 days or so? In such a way, your body gets accustomed to more food. I once was bulking big time and I was still hungry all day long :-)
  • UFJocknerd

    Posts: 392

    Sep 24, 2012 2:31 AM GMT
    6000 cals a day.

    I wouldn't do a ton of cardio on a bulk. A couple minutes every day is good for heart health tho. Wouldn't want to be huge but get winded walkin up stairs.
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    Sep 24, 2012 2:40 AM GMT
    4500-5000 for me.

    I just started last month. I should put up new pics soon to see how its coming along. I have to put it on yet still be explosive and agile for next season.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 24, 2012 2:48 AM GMT
    I am also bulking right now. My maintenance caloric rate, factoring in activity level was around 2650, so I'm tracking my calories up to 3200. Anything I get on top of that is gravy (not literally icon_smile.gif ). Unlike you, I am doing my best to not care about gaining fat. The last time I did a big bulk, I freaked out about my abs getting blurry, backed off on my calories and ultimately didn't make the gains I was hoping for. I think to be really successful, you need to allow yourself to put on a reasonable amount of fat in addition to muscle. Either that or you need to stretch your bulk out for a lot longer and be really patient with your gains. I'm still eating quality carbs, avoiding sugars and processed stuff. I don't believe in the eat anything approach. My plan right now is to bulk until the beginning of December, then do some cutting in time for my Christmas beach vacation. For the record, I'm 5'11" and currently 196 lbs, shooting for 210. icon_smile.gif

    Good luck!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 28, 2012 1:32 AM GMT
    wow.........idk how you do it........over 4000 calories gonna make me puke so bad..........did you train your stomach or you just use food sources that are high in fat and calories?
  • Medjai

    Posts: 2671

    Nov 28, 2012 1:37 AM GMT
    Note: A bulking phase can be done on any calorie surplus. 100cal over will bulk just like 1000cal over. However, I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest bulking at +100cal as opposed to +1000cal.

    How fast is your metabolism, generally?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2012 1:59 AM GMT
    http://desyatmuscle.blogspot.com/

    I've posted my workout BMR, TDEE, etc from the calculator on this blog I manage. Please check it out and let me know if I did it right, someone?

    bmr+and+tdee.png

    Summary+of+Body+Comp.png
  • UncleverName

    Posts: 741

    Dec 04, 2012 2:30 AM GMT
    For those of us too lazy, or on amazing and yet sometimes stupid smart phones:

    http://desyatmuscle.blogspot.com/
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 04, 2012 2:36 AM GMT
    I never bulk, but I have consumed as much as 5,000 or 6,000 calories before. Keep in mind that I'm the size of an NFL player.
  • Kel_

    Posts: 1360

    Dec 04, 2012 3:00 AM GMT
    I'm not particularly into eating healthy or watch the calorie intake, but I've started eating every 3-4hrs a day, just to try and see if I could bulk and gain weight.
    I want to see if its possible, due to my high metabolism rate.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 07, 2012 3:26 AM GMT
    I was 141 lbs, 5'6", ~18% body fat and consuming about 2500calories per day, and gaining. I calculated my maintenance to about 2000 cal/day. I might need to cut my calories by a couple hundred if I'm gaining too fast.

    "experts" are saying go for a .5 lbs weight gain per weak for a clean bulk to minimize fat gain.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 07, 2012 3:28 AM GMT
    tieske1983 saidThanks guys (thanks JR_RJ ;-))!

    I indeed made a little mistake. My BMR is 1734 and in order to maintain weight I should consume about 2750 kcals. I don't want to rush things so I start with 2 weeks of 3000kcals in order to see what that does, I can alway up them when nothing changes :-)

    On a side note, what are your opinions about how to work out during a "bulk"? I was kind of interested in the Realjock 12 week muscle-building program but it is in some ways opposite of what I always read about working out for building muscles (i.e. rep range I always use is 8-12 but this program suggests 16-20 for a lot of exercises; they also suggest a LOT of cardio which can stand bulking up in the way)...
    You're welcome! icon_biggrin.gif


    JR_RJ saidNot sure, but I know it's never enough... OP is cute. icon_biggrin.gif
    Still stand behind these facts.icon_wink.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 07, 2012 4:20 AM GMT
    tieske1983 saidHow much calories do you consume while bulking?
    More than you do.

    BTW, going by your BMI is stupid, unless you do nothing but work and sit at home on the couch.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Dec 08, 2012 2:35 PM GMT
    Don't stop eating until it hurts... Hit the gym until you drop... Repeat until your desired musculature has been reached.icon_biggrin.gif
  • JackDoyle

    Posts: 706

    Dec 10, 2012 6:52 PM GMT
    I read that (well this is only for skinny hard gainers I suppose) that you should only work out 3 times a week for no more than 45 minutes per workout and just eat a shitload of food!! mostly carbs, and do absolutely no cardio and you should never even break a sweat when working out, that's the best way to bulk...supposedly ha I haven't tried it yet icon_smile.gif