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Struggling to gain weight!

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I'm a total novice when it comes to nutrition and I would like to bulk up by 2 stone. Gaining weight is a real issue for me. It was only at the end of last year I managed to defeat the 10 stone mark. I'm 25 years old, 5"8 and I weigh 11 stone, I have a high protein diet taking on average 184g a day. My job is very active I'm a tree surgeon, I believe this is a big factor in the struggle of gaining the weight. I train 4 days a week, mostly strength, mild cardio to start each session with.

Any particular food or any advice on cal intake day would be much appreciated, as I say I am a total novice.

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It doesn't matter how much protein you have, just overall calories determines weight gain or loss, eating 'clean' is all good as long as you can happily eat loads of calories

work out how many calories your eating using my fitness pal and keep adding 300 calories until you gain weight then fine tune from there

if your very active you may need 3500-4000 calories a day to gain weight even at 11 stone

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16 hours ago, Jhey91 said:

Any particular food or any advice on cal intake day would be much appreciated,

The simple answer is more than you're currently eating. If you're currently tracking calories then increase your daily calorie intake by 100 kcal each week until you start to gradually gain weight. Fat gain is your ultimate guide to whether you're gaining too fast - a little fat gain is sensible but if you feel you're obviously 'getting fat' then reduce calories. About 0.5% of body weight per week increase is in the right ballpark though.

I would personally forget about having a weight target though, as in my experience this almost always leads to people making themselves fat.

Calories and enough protein will get you where you want to be. Eating a varied and broadly healthy diet is obviously good for general health, but don't feel there are any 'magic' foods you must be eating or any foods you should totally avoid. The latter especially applies if you find your active job means you need to consume fairly high calories every day. If you want say a Mars bar or a doughnut then there is zero problem with doing so.

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Got to be the old tried and testing blended shake.

75g peanut butter

2 scoops whey

Ice cubes


2 bananas 


Smaaaash!! Down that in a couple of minutes, youll be hungry again within the hour for some solid food. 

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I've found that using accurate activity monitors help me, as I never really considered how many calories I was burning at work as it didn't feel like I was doing that much. 

Try getting a Fitbit or something, just make sure it's set up properly and it should give you a better idea of what you need to eat. 

My example:

I was eating 3000 on a bulk until I educated myself properly and realised that at 3000 CALS I was at a large deficit. I'm now eating around 4K on a mild lean bulk, and cutting at around what I used to think was a surplus. 

As for making up the CALs, if your struggling have three- four main meals with a high protein source at the centre (tuna, chicken etc), and have two milk based shakes loaded up with whey and instant oats and maybe some protein bars etc to take to work. 

You could as some suggest just eat whatever but it's probably a good idea to get used to eating the right stuff because when it comes to cutting it you ever do, those habits are going to be hard as hell to lose. 


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I struggled for years.. 2 things I learnt

1 - Get cooking... a lot

2 - BIG meals every 3 hours (its spoken about non stop but it is true).


Just use common sense with foods, lean meats in every single meal, shed load of veggies, rice/pastas for your carbs and top it all off with a generous dose of olive oil.

I eat what looks like a dinner at 9am in the office, I make people feel sick  but f**k them... I am growing!

A friend of mine is "Struggling", but he doesn't eat enough. Eat to grow, not when your hungry. 9am, 12pm, 3pm, shake at 6pm, GYM at 8pm, Dinner and post workout shake. (That's my routine 5 days a week, I tend to mess up most weekends)

If you have decent portions, there is no way the above will not help you gain weight, even if you are very active. Especially if you snack on nut butters/nuts or flapjacks in between. I also have dark chocolate on my desk for when I get a sweet tooth.


Just get in the kitchen and learn to enjoy it bro.

(Side note, I have never calorie counted) And this year I went from 86kg to my current 92.7. 6ft. At your height I would imagine you already look quite big (Lucky!)

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