Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat

Quick Wits: The 2500 Calorie Rule for Gaining Weight to Build Muscle

May 13, 2024 Philip Pape, Nutrition Coach & Physique Engineer
Quick Wits: The 2500 Calorie Rule for Gaining Weight to Build Muscle
Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat
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Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat
Quick Wits: The 2500 Calorie Rule for Gaining Weight to Build Muscle
May 13, 2024
Philip Pape, Nutrition Coach & Physique Engineer

Want to pack on muscle mass but confused about how many extra calories you need?

Today, we're diving into a crucial concept for anyone looking to gain weight and build muscle: the 2500 calorie rule. You might have heard of the 3500 calorie rule for fat loss, which states that a deficit of 3500 calories is needed to lose 1 pound of body fat.

But when it comes to gaining weight and building muscle, the equation looks a bit different. You see, muscle tissue is much denser than fat tissue, which means that gaining one pound of muscle requires a different calorie surplus than gaining one pound of fat.

===> Get the FREE Muscle-Building Nutrition Blueprint mentioned in the episode

Join me on today's Quick Wits as I break down the science behind the 2500 calorie rule for gaining weight and building muscle effectively.

Or go to witsandweights.com/free for all our free guides.

--

“Quick Wits” are short mini-episodes between full episodes to give you an actionable strategy or hit of motivation.

These mini-episodes give you practical advice on fitness, training, and mindset based on my everyday experience with clients that you can implement right away.

If you enjoy these bonus episodes or have feedback on how to make them better, just send me a message on IG @witsandweights or hit me up in the free Wits & Weights Facebook community.

Send me a question for Q&A!

Support the Show.


🎓 Join Wits & Weights Physique University

👩‍💻 Schedule a FREE nutrition/training audit with Philip

👥 Join our Facebook community for live Q&As & support

✉️ Join the FREE email list with insider strategies and bonus content!

📱 Try MacroFactor for free with code WITSANDWEIGHTS. The only food logging app that adjusts to your metabolism!

🩷 Enjoyed this episode? Share it on social and follow/tag @witsandweights

🤩 Love the podcast? Leave a 5-star review

📞 Send a Q&A voicemail

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Show Notes Transcript

Want to pack on muscle mass but confused about how many extra calories you need?

Today, we're diving into a crucial concept for anyone looking to gain weight and build muscle: the 2500 calorie rule. You might have heard of the 3500 calorie rule for fat loss, which states that a deficit of 3500 calories is needed to lose 1 pound of body fat.

But when it comes to gaining weight and building muscle, the equation looks a bit different. You see, muscle tissue is much denser than fat tissue, which means that gaining one pound of muscle requires a different calorie surplus than gaining one pound of fat.

===> Get the FREE Muscle-Building Nutrition Blueprint mentioned in the episode

Join me on today's Quick Wits as I break down the science behind the 2500 calorie rule for gaining weight and building muscle effectively.

Or go to witsandweights.com/free for all our free guides.

--

“Quick Wits” are short mini-episodes between full episodes to give you an actionable strategy or hit of motivation.

These mini-episodes give you practical advice on fitness, training, and mindset based on my everyday experience with clients that you can implement right away.

If you enjoy these bonus episodes or have feedback on how to make them better, just send me a message on IG @witsandweights or hit me up in the free Wits & Weights Facebook community.

Send me a question for Q&A!

Support the Show.


🎓 Join Wits & Weights Physique University

👩‍💻 Schedule a FREE nutrition/training audit with Philip

👥 Join our Facebook community for live Q&As & support

✉️ Join the FREE email list with insider strategies and bonus content!

📱 Try MacroFactor for free with code WITSANDWEIGHTS. The only food logging app that adjusts to your metabolism!

🩷 Enjoyed this episode? Share it on social and follow/tag @witsandweights

🤩 Love the podcast? Leave a 5-star review

📞 Send a Q&A voicemail

Philip Pape:

Are you trying to pack on muscle mass, but you're confused about how many extra calories you need in that surplus. Join me on today's Quick Wits as I break down the science behind the 2,500 calorie rule for gaining weight and building muscle effectively. Welcome to the Wits and Weights podcast. I'm your host, Philip Pape, and this twice a week podcast is dedicated to helping you achieve physical self-mastery by getting stronger, optimizing your host, Philip Pape, and this twice-a-week podcast is dedicated to helping you achieve physical self-mastery by getting stronger, optimizing your nutrition and upgrading your body composition. We'll uncover science-backed strategies for movement, metabolism, muscle and mindset, with a skeptical eye on the fitness industry, so you can look and feel your absolute best. Let's dive right in, your absolute best. Let's dive right in. Welcome to another Quick Wits, your no BS guide to evidence-based strategies for your health, physique and performance.

Philip Pape:

And today we're diving into a really important concept. If you are looking to gain weight to build muscle, it's the 2,500 calorie rule. Now, if you're familiar with nutrition at all, you've probably heard of the 3,500 calorie rule for fat loss, which states that a deficit of 3,500 calories is needed to lose one pound of body fat. But when it comes to gaining weight to build muscle, the equation looks a little bit different, because muscle tissue is much denser than fat tissue and that means gaining one pound of muscle, or, more accurately, a pound that's composed of part muscle and part fat, because we can never really just gain muscle. Sadly. There's always going to be some fat along for the ride. This requires a different surplus due to the different densities, and so research tells us that when you're in a calorie surplus and you're gaining weight, you can expect to gain muscle and fat in roughly equal amounts. I know you might have heard like newbies can gain almost all muscle and an advanced trainee who works really, really hard can gain mostly muscle. But the 50-50 ratio is actually a pretty ideal rate to gain for most people and it's what you should expect. And if you go more than that, if you gain more muscle to fat than that, then that's awesome. Just consider that a bonus. But plan for the 50-50. And even at that rate, you are still going to maximize muscle growth while minimizing excessive fat accumulation.

Philip Pape:

And today I'm not talking about rates of gain. We've done that in other episodes. I will just say that the optimal range tends to be 0.2 to 0.3% of your body weight per week. But we're talking about how many calories do you need to eat to gain at the rate you want to gain? So, to gain a pound of body weight at a ratio of 50 to 50 muscle to fat, you actually want to consume around 2,500 calories, and that's again because of the different densities. A pound of muscle has about 600 calories, where a pound of fat has like 3,500 calories. And again, there's a lot of complex, complicated subtraction and stuff going on there that I'm not going to get into today. Um, and if you're, if you take half of those each and add them together, that's where you get the 2,500 calories. It's really a little bit less than that, but we're accounting for the thermic effect of food and other variances and rounding and all that. 2,500 calories is a good, simple rule of thumb.

Philip Pape:

Now, it's important to note this is a guideline. This is more of a thumb suck estimate, so it's easy to do on a cocktail napkin and again, your individual results are going to vary on a lot of factors. So I like this as a starting point and for many people it will work pretty well and in fact, so I like this as a starting point and for many people it will work pretty well and in fact, if you use macro factor it's going to use the similar type of assumption. But then if you start gaining faster or slower, it will know that you personally are gaining more or less muscle to fat and then it will adjust so you don't gain too much or too less, too little on the scale given that ratio. So I hope I didn't confuse you too much. It's pretty simple.

Philip Pape:

If you want to gain weight, to gain muscle, assume a 50 to 50 muscle to fat ratio. Give your body what it needs plenty of protein, plenty of carbs. You are including nutrient-dense whole foods. You're basically hitting those targets and going for a 2,500 calorie surplus for every pound you're trying to gain. So if you're trying to gain a pound a week, that's going to be 2,500 divided by seven and that'll be your surplus per day. So it'll be less than 500 calories per day.

Philip Pape:

Now most people aren't actually trying to gain a pound a week. They're trying to get something like maybe a half a pound a week or even a little bit less, and so a lot of my clients. We end up being somewhere around 100 to 200 calories a day, male and female. Female tends to be on the lower end, of course, because they are going often at a slower rate and or because they're smaller. So you want to make sure that you've got a good training program. You're using progressive overload, doing all the things, and then the calorie surplus is going to give you the best bang for the buck.

Philip Pape:

And, by the way, I did do a really solid. You know what? I'm going to give it away for free in this quick wits, I'm going to hopefully remember to include the link to my muscle building nutrition blueprint. You can download that and it has all of the details you need to know, including this 2,500 calorie rule, so you can set up for success your muscle building phase, and then it's just a matter of doing the work right Nourishing your body, fueling that body, being patient, persistent, being strategic, getting there all the way.

Philip Pape:

If you need a little help, you know how to reach me. Until next time, keep pushing yourself in the gym, Keep fueling the gains in the kitchen, because you need that surplus to build that muscle and stay focused on your goals. One rep, one meal at a time. Thanks again for tuning in. Thank you for tuning in to another episode of Wits and Weights, If you found value in today's episode and know someone else who's looking to level up their wits or weights, please take a moment to share this episode with them and make sure to hit the follow button in your podcast platform right now to catch the next episode. Until then, stay strong.

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