With so many other commitments outside of the gym, it can be hard to find time to get into the gym.
I spend a lot of time on fitness forums answering questions and checking out the latest trends in training and one of the most common questions I see, especially around this time of year, involves how exactly one finds the time to bulk amid the demands of school, sports and work.
Finding time is half of the problem. While training is obviously an essential part of building mass, eating a sufficient number of calories is also necessary. If you’re busy enough, like many of today’s students are, either one of these tasks can be difficult to achieve alone. But finding time for both training big and eating big can seem nearly impossible.
The key word here is nearly. If you don’t think you can manage to keep up with your grades and your weight, think again! It’s entirely possible and it’s not as hard as you think. In order to help you out, I’m going to do you a favor and offer some much-needed advice for bulking up during a busy semester.
If there’s only one thing you take away from this guide, it’s this – a successful bulk, especially one completed during a busy time of year, requires planning. What may surprise you, though, is that it only takes a few minutes. Simply print out your schedule so you can visualize where your free time lies so you can make the most of it. Ideally, you should place your workout during your longest period of free time. But your short breaks are far from useless – use those to pack in a few hundred precious calories.
Make the Most of Your Meals
One misguided trend that many beginner and intermediate lifters buy into is the philosophy that every meal needs to be the same size. While this can help curb cravings and keep your blood sugar levels at a very consistent level, it’s not absolutely necessary. If you know you’re not going to have enough time to eat for a fairly long time, there’s nothing wrong with eating a larger meal to hold you over. When you’re bulking, it’s all about getting the calories in however you can.
Be Ready to Eat on the Go
It’s inevitable that life is going to get in the way of your regular meal consumption and when you’re bulking, this is especially true – you’re busy trying to pack in tons of calories, so eating is going to take up more of your day. Unfortunately, unless you’re a full-time chef, you’re not going to be next to a refrigerator all day long, but there are a few things you can do to make sure you can still get in enough calories when you’re on the move. Packing some QUICKMASS in a shaker bottle and then adding water when you need to can be a lifesaver. And if you’re creative, use your ALLMAX protein powder to whip some up of these delicious recipes to take on the go.
Concentrate on Compounds
There’s a reason that the Big Three are exercises that nearly every strength-training athlete swears by – and it’s not because they’re easy – rather, compound exercises such as squats, deadlifts and bench presses recruit many muscles and also boost testosterone levels. If you’re trying to balance bulking with a busy schedule, compound exercises will allow you to get the most work done in the least amount of time.
So now that you’ve taken in a few tips, I’ll share a typical day in my life. It can be tough to pack in 4,500 calories, but it’s possible – just watch and learn.
Brian’s Bulking Regime
7:20 AM: Wake-up and shower. 2 cups oats, 2 scoops ALLWHEY Butterscotch Maple Fudge, handful of almonds
8 – 8:50 AM: First class
9 – 9:50 AM: Second class; ISOFLEX Triple Layer Protein Bar Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge
10 – 10:50 AM: Third class
11 – 11:50 AM: Forth class
12 noon: Lunch – about 1000 calories (usually pasta, meat, potatoes)
1 – 1:50 PM: Final class
2 – 3 PM: Relaxing or training a client at the gym
3 PM: Pre-workout meal: 600 calories (usually two sandwiches)
4 – 5 PM: Workout
5:10 PM: Post-workout meal: 700 calories (usually two scoops ISOFLEX, cereal/something sweet)
6:30 PM: Dinner: 700 calories (similar to lunch)
7:30 – 9 PM: Meeting
9 pm – 11PM: Homework or training clients at the gym
11:10 PM: Pre-bed meal: 500-600 calories (usually two scoops ISOFLEX mixed with peanut butter)
1 AM: Bedtime
Not so hard, is it? Obviously, these numbers aren’t written in stone, and depending on class and work schedules, meal times fluctuate. Along the same lines, this advice isn’t just for students who are trying to hit the books and the weights all in one day. If you have a busy job or a demanding family life, you can adopt some of these tips to make your life a little bit easier. So if you’re serious about bulking, it’s time to quit reading and start eating!