How To Gain Weight And Build Muscle For Skinny Guys

How To Gain Weight And Build Muscle For Skinny GuysI wanted to answer some questions today about how to gain weight and build muscle for skinny guys because that’s where I started and I know a thing or two about it. When I started lifting I was 126 pounds and was getting my butt kicked in football. By the end of the season I weighed 176 pounds and was way stronger. Here we go.

Reader Weight Gain Question: How much should I eat and how many calories in a day to gain weight and build muscle?

If you want to stay reasonably lean while gaining muscle then start at 15 calories per pound of bodyweight + 300 calories/day for a week and adjust up by same amount after 7 days if more weight is needed or no weight gain is noted. For a 170 pound guy that is 170 X 15= 2550 calories plus the 300 for weight gain = 2850 calories per day.

If you want to gain as much muscle as you can while gaining AS LITTLE extra fat as possible then you need to follow a tighter equation like what I’m about to explain:

Find out how many calories per day it takes for you keep your current bodyweight without gaining or losing weight.

To do this we need to roughly figure out:

1. Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) – The amount of calories your body burns maintaining bodyweight without exercise.
2. Daily work calories (job) – The amount of calories your job or daily life would burn
3. Then add exercise – The amount of calories your daily exercise burns

Calculating Your RMR

RMR = 370 + (22 x lean weight in kg)

To get from pounds to kg simply divide pounds by 2.2.

You’ll also need know your body fat percentage. A cheap pair of callipers or a bodyfat tester from Walmart works well here. If you have 15% body fat at 170 lbs then you have 25.5 pounds of pure fat and 144.5 lbs, (divided by 2.2 to get KG) 65.68KG is your lean weight.

The Daily Activity Multiplication Factor

Since a desk jockey doesn’t burn as many calories as a Totem lumber jockey, you need to take into account how many calories your job eats up on a daily basis.

Light work like an office job – multiply your RMR by 1.5

Moderate work (you move around a lot but not any heavy labour) – multiply your RMR by 1.7

Heavy work (you lift, hustle, move stuff) – multiply your RMR by 1.9

Calculating Calories Burned From Exercise

Weight training on average burns between 270-450 calories per hour and of course that depends on volume, intensity and your bodyweight.

Adding It All Up

A person weighs 170 lbs with 15% body fat.

This means they carry 24 lbs of fat.

170 – 25.5 = 144.5 lbs lean weight

144.5 / 2.2 = 65.68 Kg

His resting metabolic rate = 370 + (22 x 65.68) = 1814.96

He works an office job…..

1814.96 x 1.5 = 2557.32 to maintain bodyweight

He also does weight training 3 days a week for 60 minutes at a time which burns 300 calories. His Daily Calorie Expenditure on training days is:

2557.32 + 300 = 2857.32 calories

Putting it all together, this guy burns 2857.32 per day on workout days (3) and 2557.32 on non workout days which is 4 days a week. Make up the caloric difference you need on workout days with an extra post workout meal or shake that equals roughly 300 calories.

Then add in 200-300 calories on each day, for every day of the 7 day period in a week, check weight and adjust up if no weight gain is noted or more is wanted.

Now having said that, I never personally counted a single calorie when I was trying to put on all my weight. I only started using these calculations once I thought I needed to be “more technical” because I was a trainer… and it does work. I just ate until I was stuffed at 3 meals a day and drank a litre of milk in-between those meals. With this eating to gain weight and my low volume muscle building workout, I put on 50 pounds and and dated the prettiest girl you can imagine on the track and field team.

Here’s Another Question On How To Gain Weight And Build Muscle For Skinny Guys

Hey there,

My name is K.W. (not real name), Im 20 years old, and live in Hamilton Ontario. I had a question about nutrition that I have been asking about but i have yet to find the right answer. I am 6ft 0inches and weigh an embarrassing 165lbs. I say embarrassing because being skinny might be okay for some people but not me. i have been working out three times a week, and consuming as many calories as i can for a long period a time but haven’t been able to budge in weight. It fluctuates occasionally but haven’t been able to meet my goal of 180lbs+. Please help me i am willing to do whatever it takes to meet my goal. Is there a workout routine that helps increase muscle mass? Like less weight higher reps, or vice versa? Also what type of meal plan can i make myself to reach this goal. Please help me, i have tried everything. Thanks for your time, and i hope to hear from you soon. Godbless.

Hamilton, Ontario

Hey K.W.

I was in the same spot about 10 years ago. I’m 5’8” and I weighed 126 pounds. The only thing that worked for me to gain weight was insane eating like 1 litre of milk and a foot long sub for lunch. Follow that with another liter of milk at 3, then supper and another meal right before bed. The routines I used to gain weight were 5×5’s and the super squat routine by Randall J. Strossen. Both are in his weight gaining book super squats.

By the time I finished the school year I was up to 176 pounds. That’s a 30 pound gain and it was all lean. I have tried all kinds of routines in my experience as a personal trainer and nothing has ever come close to the weight gain and results I achieved through this program. I wish I could meet the man some day!
Here is the book I wrote on How To Gain Weight And Build Muscle On



  1. Ty says

    Hi Ray, I came across your program while googl’ing for mma workouts and found Randy’s conditioning training.

    I like what I’ve read and what people have said, but I noticed you were endorsing Sean Nalewanyj and the free stuff he was providing. After reading about his offer, I just wanted to ask the difference between his and yours. Both of you sound very convincing, but I like the fact that you seem to have more credibility in reputation and everyday fitness practicality.

    Anyways, I’m likely going to choose one of these programs, so I just thought I’d ask.

  2. says

    Well Ty, what’s the difference? Not too much. We both know what we are talking about and all though there are several ways to achieve anything, there generally are some more preferred and better methods to achieve most things.

    What I’m saying is, if you ask two doctors what to do about a headache, they will most likely say “Take an aspirin.” Both Sean and I come from the same bodybuilding background and I guess the reason there are only a handful of other trainers products on my site is because I agree with their methods.

    So info is going to be top notch either way. Just pick the dude you think you’d rather learn from…. think blonds or brunettes. It’s just a preference…..

  3. says

    Ohh… and I have an MMA fighter on staff. His name is Derek Tisdale…check him out. He’s actually standing behind me right now telling me it’s time to head into the basement and roll….

  4. Ty says

    Ray, thanks so much for the response.

    You have to forgive me for being so skeptical when it comes to finding reliable resources from ‘the intranetz.’ Hahaha. Anyways, I really appreciate your honesty and answers. Basically, I was just looking for no-nonsense and someone to tell me what to do, and I believe I’ve found it. I’m already sold and committed to do what I need to do. I’ve been blessed with this life and this body, and I just want to take care of it.

    Now it’s time for me to get started!

  5. says

    Hey Tylon, Glad to have you aboard. I just got notice that you signed up for coaching. Awesome. Make sure you let me know what you need and I’ll get it for you.

    P.S. Diggin the attitude. If you want the porsche to perform you gotta treat it well.

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