The Guide To a Successful Bulk

The Guide To a Successful Bulk
Yes that’s right, bigger is always better. Nobody wants to be skinny? Whether it’s summer time or winter time a clean bulk will always be beneficial if done properly. It’s time to stop eating like a bird and start eating like a beast and become a true bodybuilding legend.

What is Bulking?

Bulking is a term used by bodybuilders all over the world and generally refers to a phase were a person will be training harder and eating more to gain more muscle. It is used by most bodybuilders out there and brings great results when done properly. If not , it can turn into a true fat building nightmare!

Clean Bulking or Dirty Bulking?

There are two common types of bulking, clean bulking and dirty bulking. Clean bulking means eating a surplus of calories from good food sources. This means avoiding foods with high saturated fats and sugary drinks. Dirty bulking generally means eating everything you see, that’s right pizza , soda, hamburgers, the list goes on and on. In reality when bulking, you will gain fat whether you clean bulk or dirty bulk because essentially muscle does contain fat in it. Either way, when bulking, you will generally want to put on as much muscle mass as possible and put on the least fat . This will definitely be easier to achieve with clean bulking rather than dirty bulking.

Calorie Intake

As a general rule of thumb, you can successfully clean bulk by eating a 500-calorie surplus over your Daily Maintenance calorie count. Which you can approximately find using this short formula.

Total daily calorie = current weight ( in lbs.) x 15

This is not perfect as every person’s metabolic rate is different but it should give you a brief guide line and you can still adjust the intake in 3 weeks or so if you feel it is not enough or, if you feel you are gaining too much fat.

The Basics of Nutrition

Now that you know how many calories you should intake, let us calculate your macronutrient division.

1 gram of any source of protein is about 4 calories
1 gram of any source of carbohydrate is about 4 calories
1 gram of any source of fat is about 9 calories

For a general bulk your macronutrient calorie division should be composed of

1g to 1.5 grams of protein for every pound of weight
2- 2.5 grams of carbohydrates for every pound of weight
And the remaining calories should be spent on fats which should be about 20%

Quick overview

The Guide To a Successful BulkProteins are crucial to bodybuilding as they are used to build up muscle. You should not consume too much protein in one sitting as you might feel discomfort.

Carbohydrates are used to fuel your muscle with energy and glycogen so that your muscles so you can lift weights and repair themselves.

Fats are necessary to produce hormones in your body, which will aid to the recovery and production of muscle. Having a diet high in Saturated fats and Trans fats is not recommended although having a diet high with Polyunsaturated and Monounsaturated fats is recommended.

Where to Get Your Protein

Getting lean sources of protein that are not expensive can be very difficult; here is a list of foods that have a good quantity of protein in them:

Turkey breast ( 30 grams per 100g)
Cottage cheese (11 grams per 100g)
Egg whites (11g per 100g)
Plain yogurt ( 6g per 100g )
Tuna water canned ( 28 g per 100g )
Walnuts ( 15g per 100g )
Pork Loin (25g per 100g)
Lean beef (36g per 100g )

Where to Get Your Fats

Yes that’s right, not all fats are created equally. Some fats like saturated fats are not good for you as they increase LDL cholesterol unlike unsaturated fats, which increase HDL cholesterol.

Olive oil (100g per 100g)
Walnuts (65g per 100g)
Flax seed (42g per 100g)
Avocado (1 g per 100g)
Tofu (4.8g per 100g)
Soy milk (1.8 per 100g)
Peanut butter (50g per 100g)
Peanut oil (100g per 100g)

Where to get your carbs from

Dietary fibers, sugars and complex carbohydrates are all carbohydrates. I strongly recommend to not take in too much sugar as is can be harmful to your body. Complex carbohydrate and dietary fibers on the other hand are beneficial to your body.

Quinoa (64g per 100g)
Barley (73g per 10g)
Red Kidney Beans (23 per 100g)
Banana (23g per 100g)
Brown rice (23g per 100g)
Oatmeal (12g per 100g)
Whole grain bread (41g per 100g)
Whole wheat pasta ( 27g per 100g)

Recommended supplements

The supplement industry has revolutionized bodybuilding. Yes that is right, a single pill or two can provide you with all the vitamins and minerals you need. That is pretty neat considering you won’t have to eat a ton of fruits like bodybuilders used to do back in the days. Here is a list of supplements that I recommend you to buy in order to supplement your diet. I would like to stress the word supplement here; supplements should absolutely not be used as a meal replacement!

Casein protein shakes
Whey protein shakes
Multi vitamin tablets
Creatine protein shakes
Amino acids and BCCA powder


Just because you are bulking that surely does not mean you can skip cardio. Cardiovascular exercises improve endurance and overall health. I recommend having at least one cardio session per week but not more than two because in order to bulk you need a calorie surplus, which the cardio might remove.


Yes, that is right; you do not actually build muscle when you are at lifting. In fact, you are actually tearing and breaking down the muscle! Now that is a shocker, lifting weights applies pressure to the muscles, which in return forms micro tears in the muscle. The science behind increasing muscle mass is straight forward; when you stop lifting and rest, your body will use proteins you ingested and start to fix the micro tears in the muscles and heal the muscle. This process will create a bigger and stronger muscle that is going to be able to lift more weights. That is why rest is crucial if you want to increase muscle mass. I recommend sleeping at least eight hours every night and training a muscle only once a week to ensure it is fully recovered.


If you follow my advice carefully, I am certain you will make lots of progress and get much bigger! To successfully bulk I recommend people to bulk for 5 -6 months and then cut for the following month or two before going on another bulk.

Ryan Abdullah

Ryan Abdullah is a student who is also a personal trainer in his free time. He fell in love with bodybuilding when he was only 12 and loves to motivate , teach and inspire people at all times.

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