As a self-proclaimed “skinny guy”, Joe Fazer knows a thing or two about some of the difficulties of bulking. You may have seen his transformation photos on his Instagram, or even stumbled upon his YouTube channel where he posts gym advice for people with a similar body type to him.
Joe recently posted a video guide sharing how he managed to put on muscle. Here’s his bulking advice for people who may find it trickier than others.
As you may be aware, to lose weight you’ve got to be in a calorie deficit. So to put on weight you’ve got to be in a calorie surplus. Makes perfect sense. To some people, eating this much is a dream come true.
But Joe says it’s not that simple for him. Because of his fast metabolism and small appetite, he’s always found it difficult to consume the calories needed to be in surplus. But over the years he’s figured out a few ways that work for him.
Calorie dense meals
Usually, calorie-dense meals mean plates of chicken with rice or a 10-egg omelette. This is what’s known as a “clean bulk”.
But these foods aren’t dense enough in calories for Joe. He needs more calories in smaller quantities of food, so he opts for pizza, burgers or even ice cream. It’s not the most nutritious diet, but it works for him.
This was a “game-changer” for Joe. He finds it far easier to drink calories than eat calories. Here’s the recipe for his 1000kcal Fazer shake:
- 250ml full-fat milk
- 2.5 scoops of vanilla ice cream
- Handful of berries
- 2 tablespoons of Greek yoghurt
- 1.5 scoops strawberry whey
- 1 banana
- 30g oats
Protein is vitally important, too. His recommendation is one gram of protein per pound of body weight. For example, Joe weighs 175lb, so he aims to consume 175g of protein per day.
Overcoming a small appetite
Joe beats his small appetite by eating his meals in a five-minute window, setting a timer and ridding himself of distractions like his phone and TV. He does this to consume all the calories he needs before he begins to feel full.
A workout split that works for you is fundamental for building muscle. One split that’s never worked for Joe is the “bro split”, where you train one muscle group per session.
Instead, Joe advises doing a full-body workout split three days a week so you can target each muscle group three times every week.
Alternatively, you can try the push, pull, legs split — which is our own PT’s suggestion.
Find out more about that here:
On what exercises make up these splits, Joe says to stick to heavy compound lifts and then add in a few lighter isolation movements if you aren’t too tired. His thinking is compound movements work your whole body, whereas isolation exercises — you guessed it — isolate just one muscle group.
And you must prioritise progressive overload. This is gradually increasing the weights or the reps on your lifts. It’s one of the key ways of building muscle.
Joe has a few supplements that he swears by: creatine, whey protein, protein bars, and a high-quality whey gainer to help him meet his macros.