What is Lean Bulking? | Build Muscle Without Getting Fat


If you ever decided to look up how to build
muscle on the internet, there’s no doubt that you’ve bumped into the concept of bulking. In short, bulking is a strategy of eating
more calories than you would normally expend, aka a calorie surplus. The goal is, paired with some solid weight
training, the additional food will “feed” the muscles so you can pack on some serious
gains. If you’ve dug a bit further in your research,
which might be the reason you’re watching this video now, then you’ve likely ran into
the more descriptive term, LEAN bulking. In this video, we’re gonna jump into describing
what lean bulking is and how to do it. Let’s get to it:
As mentioned, the idea of bulking itself is to consume more calories than you burn to
provide sufficient nutrients for building muscle. However, just telling people to “bulk”
isn’t really enough information. In fact, it might lead to the problem of unfettered
bulking, where the only rule is to just to eat more. This lack of accounting for the total amount
of food you eat might very well lead to excessive eating. Excessive enough where the food doesn’t
translate to more muscle built, but rather, more fat stored. We see this problem in studies like the 2012
study by Garthe et al. Elite athletes that were given a heavy caloric
surplus did put on muscle mass, but not statistically significantly more than elite athletes that
ate 550 calories fewer. Worse yet, they ended up putting on more weight
in fat. A solution to problems like this might be
lean bulking. Lean bulking, as the name might suggest, is
the attempt to stay lean during a bulk. Gain muscle without gaining too much fat. In order to do so, the amount of calories
you consume should NOT OVERLY exceed the amount you burn. Provide the body just enough nutrients to
build muscle and not store fat. Now the disadvantage of this is the need for
accountability and staying on top of calculating and tracking your food intake. This might deter some since bulking is generally
viewed as a time to eat freely compared to a cut where there are heavy restrictions. Lean bulking is still much less restrictive
than cutting, but still require some degree of limitation. And in terms of fat gain, it still will happen. Fat gain is nearly inevitable in any type
of long-term bulking endeavor. It’s just that lean bulking will mitigate
fat as much as possible. This is an especially crucial point the more
fit you are since you’re much closer to your muscle building potential, thus incur
less absolute muscle gains which leaves you more susceptible to fat storage. In this case, something like body recomposition
might be a better approach than lean bulking, which we will discuss another time. Now, I do want to point out that we don’t
know the exact calorie number to sustain a lean bulk. The previous study showed excessive fat gain
can occurred at a 600-calorie surplus. However, subjects were elite athletes prone
to greater fat gains and less muscle growth. It might be that less trained individuals
can get away with more. The main takeaway is that since we don’t
know the exact calorie approach, we must adjust calorie intake on an individual basis. But I don’t want to leave you empty-handed
and guessing everything on your own. Here’s some best practice points:
A good starting point for a lean bulk is to maintain a 300 to 500 calorie surplus. This should cover most people’s bases, but
make sure to continuously adjust your calorie intake based on your ongoing results. More if you’re not putting on much muscle
or less if you’re gaining too much fat. Now all of this is under the assumption that
you’re resistance training. Make sure you get a decent program that fits
your schedule and targets each muscle group at least 2 times a week. It’s also best to get most of your food
from healthy whole foods, especially if overeating is an issue. Also, make sure that you’re getting enough
protein. Studies do show that a bulk low in protein
is much more susceptible to storing fat than a high protein diet. I generally recommend getting 1.6 grams per
kilogram of bodyweight with an upper limit of 2.3 grams. And after doing all of that, congrats, you’re
now lean bulking! Special shoutouts to the PicutreFit discord
community. And an especially special shoutout to Alarming
Animations for winning the “GET YOUR PROTEIN” drawing challenge we had in August with THIS
awesome awesome drawing! Thank you for participating and thank you
to the runner-ups for participating as well. If you wanna join in on future challenges
or just wanna get some free advice on your fitness goals, then please come checkout the
PictureFit discord community. Other than that, if you enjoyed this video,
don’t forget to give it a bulky thumbs up and share it with your lean loving friends. Subscribe if you want more bulky videos. As always, thank you for watching and GET
YOUR PROTEIN.

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