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Muscle Gain

Testing Helps Hardgainers Add Muscle

This “hardgainer” client came to Metabacheck with the common complaint that no matter what he did he could not build muscle and attain a six pack despite his obviously low body fat percentage. His start weight was 114.4 lbs. and his height was 5′ 6″.

We explained to him that at his current composition his body was basically in extreme starvation mode and until we turned that around his body would not risk wasting any consumed calories on the production of muscle (an unaffordable luxury for someone that is starving).

Our  first order of business for him was to get his body out of the extreme catabolic spiral he had created and into an anabolic growth mode. Even though we knew that his body had suppressed his metabolism many pounds ago as it entered survival mode, we still needed some point of reference on which to base his initial caloric intake and dietary guidelines.

His initial measured resting metabolic rate (rmr) was 1152 calories per day and his predicted total metabolic rate (tmr) which includes normal day to day activity (but not exercise) was 1497 calories per day. Based on these numbers and the expectation that his metabolic rate was also suppressed we started him at approximately 2000-2300 calories per day and referred him to the Dr. Transformation program for nutrition and training guidance.

After only four weeks in the program, we measured his metabolic rate once again. His scale weight had climbed from 114 lbs. to 120 lbs. so we anticipated a large rise in his metabolism secondary to both his overall weight gain (added muscle) and our having moved him from a catabolic state into an anabolic state (out of starvation mode). We were not disappointed. His resting metabolic rate (rmr) had jettisoned from 1152 cal/day to a whopping 1685 cal/day (+533 cal/day) and his total metabolic rate (tmr) was now up from 1497 cal/day to 2189 cal/day (+692 cal/day). Based on these new numbers we adjusted his dietary guidelines to reflect his new caloric requirements.

Above are his corresponding week 10 photos at which time he weighed approximately 129lbs. (up 15lbs. from his start weight). The pictures pretty much speak for themselves.