generation ironPacking on muscle is simple for some, harder for others.

We’ve all seen them. The skinny guys in the gym looking to pack on pounds of muscle, who is on a mission to change from frail to strong through hard work and dedication. There’s no shame in it. All of us have been in the type of shape that would make any girl cringe and any lifter laugh their ass off. That’s fine, because it’s that same reaction that lights the fuel in us to make those changes in the first place.

Having a skinny body type when trying to pack on the muscle isn’t exactly the most ideal. Where a person with a manageable amount of body fat may be able to turn that fat into muscle, when you’re skinny it seems impossible to put on even a pound of muscle.

The only way to go about packing on muscle when you’re an skinny ectomorph is by becoming a hardgainer. That means you’re gonna have to eat, eat, and eat if you want to put on the necessary pounds. You’ll have to train hard if you’re going to shape those added pounds into muscle. It’s not something that will happen over night, so here are some tips that will help you break through to the form you’ve always desired.

Tip #1

Drinking your meals seems like a bit of a stretch for some people, but in reality the amount of food a hardgainer has to eat day in and day out can just be a bit unreasonable. You don’t want to find yourself 3 weeks into your progress and wanting to give the whole thing up. Drinking your meals, whether it’s a mix of egg or whey protein with adequate carbohydrates will help give you energy to train as well as pack on the muscle.

Tip #2

Once you’ve got your form down, be sure to lift heavy. The bicep curls and triceps extension are both great for building definition, but what you need is to pack on muscle and you’re not going to get that done with high volume isolation exercises. Instead choose to build strength and size on the bench press with lower volume and heavier weight.

Tip #3

Be sure to add the healthy fats into your diet. Your problem isn’t shedding fat as an ectomorph it’s getting the pounds packed onto your frame. Healthy fats are filled with calories and have all the ingredients needed to build strong and sturdy muscle mass.

Tip #4

Getting more rest is definitely a must if you want to start seeing all the hard work you’ve put in start taking shape. Resting is the a very important ingredient to your development, as important as the amount of weight you’re hauling in the gym. It allows helps in avoiding unnecessary injury. Get more sleep and watch your muscles grow.

Tip #5

Changing up your workout routine every 4 to 6 weeks is a definite must for the hardgainer. In order to avoid plateauing you’ll need to give your body different routines to follow. This will keep your body from getting used to one program and ensures that you’ll have continued and consistent muscle growth.

Take these tips into consideration and let us know your progress in the comments below. Be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook and Twitter for new updates.

Jonathan Salmon
Managing editor of Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. He has been writing about bodybuilding, combat sports, and strength sports for over 8 years. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.