On this subject, you can take advantage of simple math, because to gain weight, you don’t have to do anything but put 1 and 1 together.
Let’s say you burn an average of 2000 kcal (kilocalories) a day. If you now consume 2500 kcal daily it means you have a surplus of 500 kilocalories per day and 3500kcal per week. To burn 1 kilogram of body fat in a certain period of time, you need to create a calorie deficit of 7000kcal in that period (1).
Unfortunately, it is not quite as easy to gain fat-free mass because each body has a different metabolism, with one body building muscle faster and another body building muscle slower.
Of course, the right training stimulus plays a particularly important role here. The fact is that in our example of a calorie surplus of 3500 kcal per week, you could gain the equivalent of a maximum of half a kilogram of mass (not counting the change in water balance) – although it does not seem realistic that most of it is pure muscle mass.
This should also express that the increase of muscle mass is relatively limited, unless one ingests illegal anabolic substances, although even there by far not unlimited muscle mass can be built up.
Fat mass, however, is theoretically easier to gain, since a simple calorie surplus must be guaranteed for this (1).
Learn everything you need to know about protein shakes for gaining weight in the following article:
"Making "Healthy Gains
Healthy Gains means: to gain weight with sense and reason (taking into account the health aspect). In the fitness world, the term "lean-bulk" is also often used – which is meant to mean "lean build".
The terms are meant to describe that as a fitness and strength athlete or bodybuilder, one should be careful not to consume an unnecessary amount of calories, as the gain in lean muscle or strength is limited. At some point, more is simply not enough. At least not more muscle mass, but more fat mass.
Healthy gains also means that you choose your food carefully and use wholesome, nutrient-rich foods instead of giving your body a lot of "empty" calories. Empty in this context means a high degree of processing of a food, which usually goes hand in hand with a low nutrient density, such as z.B. low quality fast food, chips or other sweets.
So, in the project of making "healthy gains," be sure to achieve a calorie surplus each day and consume nutrient-dense, high-quality foods to do so. Your body will thank you with more strength and new gains!
A guideline for building lean muscle mass is a calorie surplus of approx. 200-500 kcal per day – based on the fact that half a kilo of weight gain per week in a lean bulk should already be the absolute maximum, if not much less. Start with a smaller calorie surplus of 200 kcal per day and work your way up to a larger surplus over the weeks.
To begin, it is recommended to first determine your calorie consumption before you can even determine how many calories you should consume to build lean muscle mass.
It is recommended from the build up and during of the build up in regular intervals Have your body composition analyzed to track exactly what you’ve gained. One way to do this is to use a body fat scale or caliper.
The perfect Gainer Shake for gaining weight – your secret weapon for healthy gains!
Now, if you are a person who has trouble gaining weight – a so-called "hard gainer" – then a high-calorie shake could be your solution. In particular, athletes who naturally have trouble gaining weight of any kind can benefit from drinking calories rather than eating them.
It’s super easy and inexpensive to create a high-calorie "gainer shake" to ensure your daily calorie surplus.
A Gainer Shake is a blend of good/complex carbohydrates, a decent serving of protein, some high quality fats, essential vitamins and minerals, and certain supplements if needed. As a strength athlete or bodybuilder, make sure your shake contains approximately the macronutrient distribution of 55-60% carbohydrates, 25-30% protein and 10-20% fat (7).
If you want to consume the shake before or after your workout, then it makes sense to focus on proteins and carbohydrates and use a distribution of approx. Use 60% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 10% fat (7). You can also take advantage of using milk or milk alternatives, rather than water, as they contain more calories and other nutrients.
Which sources we can recommend for the perfect shake and which benefits these sources have, you can find out here (2):
- The right sources of carbohydrates: Oatmeal (instant oats), bananas, various fruits, maltodextrin, agave syrup, honey, coconut blossom sugar, Weight Gainer Blend, The Gainer, Vegan Recovery Blend, various starches
Carbohydrates have the purpose of giving you energy and replenishing your muscle glycogen stores.
Complex carbohydrates, such as.B. Oatmeal keeps you full for a long time and gives your body energy over longer workouts. Simple carbohydrates go into the blood and glycogen stores faster. They will help you with fast, explosive movements during the workout and after the workout with the regeneration of the damaged muscle cells.
- The best sources of proteinWhey protein, casein, protein blend (multi-component protein), soy protein, pea protein, hemp protein, rice protein, vegan protein blend, yogurt, cottage cheese, whole milk, vegan milk alternatives (e.g., water).B. Soy milk, almond milk, rice milk, oat milk), nuts and nut butters, BCAAs, EAAs, Weight Gainer Blend, The Gainer, protein bars or other protein desserts
Protein is the building block of all life, as all our cells are made up of the smallest building block of protein, the amino acid. When choosing the right protein source, you should pay attention to how complete the amino acid profile of the protein source is, because only a protein with a complete amino acid profile can make the body’s own protein biosynthesis work (3).
All animal protein sources listed have a complete amino acid profile. With vegan protein sources, you need to make sure you combine them with other foods to get a complete amino acid profile.
Another option is to add BCAAs or EAAs to the shake.
- High quality healthy fat sources: Nuts, Nut butters (peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, nut butter mix), chia seeds, cacao, coconut flakes, coconut oil
Fatty acids have the function of regulating your hormonal balance, as they influence the release of certain hormones. Healthy fatty acids have a vitalizing and anti-inflammatory effect and promote your well-being (10). They also have the highest energy density of any macronutrient at 9.3 kcal per 1 gram, helping you gain weight!
- Supplements:Creatine (strength increase), Vitamin C& Multivitamin mix (boosting the immune system), enzymes (supporting the digestive system).
Some homemade examples of gainer shakes (10)
Weight Gainer Recipe: The Chocolate Bomb
The classic among the build-up shakes. Banana and oatmeal provide valuable carbohydrates, and plenty of protein is also absorbed via the Whey Protein.
The chocolate flavor, combined with the cocoa butter, provides a unique taste. For chocolate fans, this is probably the most pleasant way to take in extra calories.
- 400ml whole milk
- 1 banana
- 75g oatmeal
- 30g Impact Whey Protein, chocolate
- 10g cocoa butter
The nutritional values
- 95g carbohydrates
- 32g fat
- 48g protein
Weight Gainer Recipe: The Vegan Gainer
Of course, there are also shakes suitable for advocates of the vegan diet to help build mass. Instead of milk, almond milk, oat milk or coconut milk are suitable.
Instead of the conventional Whey protein the protein portion can be covered by nut butter or vegan pea or rice protein.
- 400ml almond milk
- 30g cashew butter, peanut butter or almond butter
- 1 banana
- 30g oatmeal
- 30g Vegan Blend, chocolate
The nutritional values
- 600 kcal
- 57g carbohydrates
- 28g fat
- 35g protein
Weight Gainer Recipe: The Berry Shake
The build-up shake for fruit lovers. Valuable vitamins and antioxidants are absorbed through the raspberries. The coconut oil also provides important fatty acids.
- 300ml whole milk
- 125g raspberries
- 15g coconut oil
- 30g Impact Whey Protein, Strawberry/Raspberry
The nutritional values
- 500 kcal
- 22g Carbohydrates
- 28g fat
- 36g protein
Why buy a Gainer Shake?
In everyday life it can often be stressful and you do not find the time to conjure up a gainer shake every morning, before and after training. Also, buying fresh fruit, nut butters, protein shakes and other ingredients sometimes proves to be a bit more costly.
In addition, you must have a good blender to create a creamy delicious consistency.
Myprotein’s gainer shakes can be prepared in your shaker, are fast-dissolving, less expensive than the "homemade" variety, and represent a perfect symbiosis of the right distribution of the right carbohydrates, healthy fatty acids, complete proteins, vitamins, minerals, and nutritional supplements.
You don’t have to worry about anything anymore and you can assemble a high-calorie drinking meal several times a day in seconds.
It’s relatively difficult to make a comparison between homemade shakes and ready-made gainer shakes, as the grams of homemade shakes vary.
In all shakes, it is noticeable that the ratio of carbohydrates to fats is about 2 to 1, which meets our recommendation. Otherwise, all shakes contain complete sources of protein and a good mix of complex and simple carbohydrates.
Advantages and disadvantages of ready-made gainer shakes (Vs. homemade gainer shakes)
The advantages of ready made gainer shakes are that they save you time and mostly cost. You don’t need an expensive blender and you don’t need to buy the single ingredients, which are usually more expensive, if you value quality.
Also, all the macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, fats) are mixed together in a perfect ratio, saving you the math here as well. The product "Extreme Gainer Blend" also contains creatine monohydrate, which is scientifically proven to increase your strength and muscle building (4)(5).
"The Gainer" contains, in addition to a perfect macronutrient distribution, among other things, BCAAs, which in combination with the other 17 proteinogenic amino acids forms a complete amino acid profile, multivitamins to strengthen the immune system and an enzyme blend to support digestion.
Disadvantages of ready-made shakes are that they lack the freshness you get when you use fresh or frozen fruit. Of course, the preparation with fresh fruits offers a greater variety, one can specifically create the desired taste and it tends to contain more nutrients.
By being able to choose your own ingredients for your homemade shake, you can z.B. by adding nut butters or oils, the calorie count can skyrocket more easily, whereas with ready-made gainer shakes, you don’t have much wiggle room. Besides, the taste of homemade shakes is usually better than that of ready-made products.
Combine ready-made gainer shakes with fresh fruit and milk to get the most out of them (see linked recipes). There are no limits to creativity in making gainer shakes.
Take Home Message
Both ready-made and homemade gainer shakes have advantages and disadvantages. Ready-made shakes are usually a little cheaper than freshly prepared shakes. However, homemade shakes usually taste better and offer greater variety and freshness.
If you are short of time or don’t always want to buy all the ingredients including a mixer, then a ready-made gainer shake could be the solution to your problems.
Do you already own a blender, are you willing to experiment and creative?? Then check out our recipe ideas for shakes and get to the blender: