Gaining Weight for Athletes
Four factors affect weight gain:
- Food Intake
- Rest and Recovery
Your genetic make-up will influence the effect of the other three factors. Remember, you cannot change your genetic make-up.
- Include a progressive resistance strength-training program.
- Ensure adequate food intake. You may need to eat more.**
- Ensure adequate rest and exercise recovery.
PROMOTE MUSCLE GAIN NOT FAT GAIN!
SET REALISTIC GOALS.**
** Consult a registered dietitian/sport nutritionist to assist you in planning a nutritious meal plan.
HOW ARE YOU PROMOTING WEIGHT GAIN? TIP THE SCALES IN YOUR FAVOUR
Are you following a progressive resistance strength-training program?
Muscle gain is gradual. Rarely will an adult athlete gain as much as 10 lb. of muscle mass per year.
- Consult a certified strength and conditioning specialist.
- Allow sufficient rest and recovery time between workouts.
- Get adequate sleep.
YOU NEED EXTRA ENERGY TO BUILD MUSCLE
You need more Calories from carbohydrate, protein, and fat.
Carbohydrate helps promote growth of muscle protein.
- Choose high energy, nutrient-dense foods from the four food groups.
- Increase portion sizes of foods and beverages.
- At meals, choose high-energy foods first, have salads and soup last.
Are you managing your daily schedule to include time to eat?
- Plan ahead (meals/snacks, exercise/rest)
- Don’t skip meals, especially breakfast.
- Eat frequently throughout the day – at least 3 meals and 3 snacks each day.
Are you drinking high-energy fluids?
- Drink juices, milk, milkshakes, or meal replacement drinks.
- If fluids make you too full at meals, try drinking between meals.
High energy, nutrient-dense suggestions:
- Choose high-energy cereals (such as muesli, granola, shreddies, shredded wheat, raisin bran) or energy bars.
- Cook hot cereals with milk.
- Add fresh or dried fruits (such as apricots, raisins, dates, figs) nuts, seeds, or sugar to cereals.
- Eat high quality protein foods: meat, poultry, fish, eggs, soy products, milk products, etc.
- Buy unsliced bread and slice it thick.
- Choose starchy vegetables (such as peas, potatoes, lima beans, corn, etc.).
- Choose dried fruit often (raisins, dried apricots, pears, etc.).
- Add less water than suggested to frozen juices.
- Choose higher energy juices (such as grape, apricot nectar, pineapple, apple) or cranberry cocktail.
- Add powdered milk/instant breakfast to milk or to fortified soy beverage.
- Use flavoured milk or make milkshakes with ice milk/yogurt/ice cream, and fruit.
- Add fruit and granola to yogurt.
- Eat ice milk/sherbet/ice cream for dessert.
- Snack on “trail mix” (nuts, sunflower seeds, dried fruit).
- Add peanut butter, jam, jelly, and honey to muffins, bread, and biscuits, etc.
- Eat snacks such as milk pudding and custards, oatmeal raisin cookies, date squares, banana bread, frozen dairy products (ice cream, ice milk, frozen yogurt), fresh/dried fruit, trail mix.
Simple SNAC suggestions:
- A piece of fruit and granola topped with yogurt
- Peanut butter and banana sandwich with milk.
- Meat, lettuce, and tomato sandwich with milk.
- Graham crackers/bagel/English muffin with peanut butter.
- Milkshake: milk, ice cream, and fruit.
- Trail mix: raisins, peanuts, chocolate chips, dried fruit, banana chips, dates, pretzels, and cereal.
- Cheese and vegetable pizza (10" with thick crust).