You can get “big” without too much attention to what you eat. Demolish half a box of Cap’n Crunch in the a.m., swing through a fast-food drive-through once or twice during the day, and polish off a tub of ice cream at night after a thick, juicy steak and a cheese-and-sour-cream-slathered baked potato on the side, and even the hardest of hardgainers will start to test the load limit on their bathroom scale soon enough.
Quality size, however, is a bit of a different story. While you don’t have to watch every morsel, you do want to eat relatively healthy to give your body the best raw materials to create lean mass and not just shovel down empty calories that eventually burrow into your fat stores.
This diet, built for a 175-pound male, provides plenty of clean muscle-building fuel. To adjust the meals and portion sizes to your frame, take your body weight and multiply it by 16 to 20 for your total calorie goal, and multiply your weight by 1 to 1.50 for your protein goal. Keep fatty foods to a minimum, with the remainder of your calories coming from mostly high-quality carbohydrate sources like those included here.