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Exercise and Diet for the Hardgainer

A hardgainer is a person who has trouble putting on weight and building the muscle mass that others find so easy to accomplish. According to some, the majority of people are hardgainers who are frustrated from the lack of results they are seeing from all of the effort they're putting in.

The truth is, this problem is actually genetic, but it can be overcome - and no, steroids aren't the answer. By combining the right exercise regimen with the proper foods, you can gain the muscle you're working so hard for.

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Bodybuilders typically work out every day to grow and maintain their massive physique. A hardgainer can follow the same routine but will never see the same results. This is because your metabolism naturally burns the calories you take in without the workout. In order to build that muscle, you need to cut your workouts back significantly. Three days a week is often more than adequate for your body type.

When you do work out, make sure to work every muscle group in your body but don't overdo it. Work each muscle group just enough to stimulate the muscles, and then move on.

Focus on Compound Exercises

Compound exercises should be the focus of the hardgainer regimen, combined with some small muscle and injury preventing exercises. Three sets of each exercise should be plenty to pump up that muscle.

Many hardgainers don't gain the muscle mass because they overwork themselves, and burn up all of their calories. As was mentioned before, your metabolism will burn the calories more quickly than you can generally use them anyway so try to stick to a strict workout, doing the minimum to give your muscles the exercise and stimulation they need to grow.


Hardgainer = Under Eater

The hardgainer diet is also much different from that of a typical bodybuilder. When your body runs out of calories to burn, it turns to muscle and fat for energy. If you do not consume more calories than you burn each day, your body will start eating away at the muscle to create energy. If you're trying to gain that muscle mass, you should eat as often as possible. Every two hours or eight times a day is usually the goal to shoot for.

Frequency is not the only part of the hardgainer's diet that is different. Rather than eating a diet of 40% protein, 40% carbohydrates, and 20% fats, a hardgainer needs something closer to 25% protein, 50% carbs, and 25% fats.


Keep your fridge stocked with plenty of healthy foods so that when it's time for the next meal you're prepared. Of course, many of us live fast paced lives and aren't home enough to eat seven to eight meals a day. Make snacks ahead of time for the next day that you can take with you wherever you're going. Planning ahead will help you stick to your diet and you'll start to see a three to five pound weight gain.

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A hardgainer, because of their body type, has to work much harder to gain the extra muscle they desire. Just remember, it is possible. Stick to a strict diet and a hardgainer workout plan and soon you'll start seeing the results you want.

Exercise and Diet for the Hardgainer

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