T Nation

Can't eat enough

I only weight about 140 lbs and i’m eating at least 3,000 calories everyday and not gaining weight. I find it hard to eat anymore calories because alot of times i feel in an overtrained state because although i workout 4 days a week this is the most inactive i’ve been since i was 13 and i’m 19 now. So Christian said that he was sure that i had very poor work capacity so i’m gonna to add some sled dragging 3 days a week to work on that. Should i try and up my calories as much as possible or what should i do?

Hmmm… There’s most definately something missing/wrong… - That, or you’ve got the fastest metabolism known to man.

I’m basically going to be taking blind shots here, but let’s try to cover the basics (just in case). - If these don’t trigger any alarms for you, then you may want to consult an MD and check your thyroid levels (among other things).

Training - If you’re using any routines from Flex, Ironman, etc. you’re most likely overtraining (unless you’re using AAS). The best advice that I can pass here is that when the going gets tough, SIMPLIFY. - Get back to basics and use only heavy, compound movements; refer to the FAQs for specific routines. You’ve already been around the forums once or twice, and I’m guessing you already have you’re training squared away, so let’s move on…

Supplements - It many situations, using any sort of stimulants while bulking is going to be counter-productive. Specifically, if you’re a caffeine addict, you need to address that ASAP. Likewise, any ephedrine products, thyroid enhancers, or other such product should be eliminated from your arsenal (for now).

Diet - Last, but MOST important! - Your claim of getting 3000 calories/day seems like you’re on the right track (you might want to try to bump it up to 3500 though). My first question, though, is: are you sure you’re eating 3000/day?!? - Unless you keep a food log and/or pre-plan all of your meals, you may be surprised at how many calories you’re really eating (or not eating).

Be sure to spread your calories out across 6 or so meals.

Your diet should yield at least 1g of protein per pound of body weight. - In your case, I’d say aim for 1.5-2g per lb. The protein should come mainly from meat, eggs, and/or whey protein. Aim for 20% of you calories from fat (this is important, you need fat in your diet), and fill in the balance with carbs.

That’s the best advice I can give for now. Throw back more details if none of these sound new, and the T-Nation will take it from there.

Well if your goal is to gain weight and you’re not gaining weight with your caloric intake you just need to eat more quality calories. That caloric intake for a 140 lb 19 year old may not be near enough to pack on the lbs. If you’re feeling overtrained already I think it’s imperative you recover FIRST before trying to add in extra GPP which is only going to overtrain you further and make gaining weight that much more difficult. I would scale down your weight training, make sure you get enough sleep, increase your nutrition and once you start gaining weight begin to add in extra GPP and other activities to increase your work capacity.

Unless there’s a medical problem, like Klink says, there will be a point where the calories in > calories out, and your body HAS to use these calories for increased mass (muscle or fat). (I know this is very simplified but it serves the purpose here). So, yes, if you’re not gaining ANY form of body weight, up the calories again until you ARE. Remember, at 19yo, your body is quite possibly still in a late natural growth stage. -So, your body needs calories both for it’s natural growth, and the training stresses you’re putting it under.

Look closely at the QUALITY of your diet and training too. A lot of times with regard to training it’s better to simplify vs add complexity if you’re not achieving the results you want.


With regard to diet, ensure you’re getting enough quality fat sources too- good for your recovery and general health, and a great way to up the calories without eating that much more food VOLUME.


Give us some more details? SRS

I’d suggest at least 3200 calories and possibly Udo’s Choice blend to help you get your fats balanced out. Have you ever had your resting metabolic rate checked? You might want to check it and add it to specific work load metabolic rate, then add as much as 1000 calories to it for growth to occur. This may also sound funny but how much food goes out? Your body may not be absorbing the calories you do comsume. This can usually be fixed by getting quality food in you. You’d be amazed. Before I began to eat right I could eat 5000 cal of crap and gain a little flab. Now with quality calories I can eat 3750 and gain slowly (and I weigh 188 lbs and just about 8.5% BF). Try to eat 6-7 meals a day. If it is too difficult you might want to invest in a weight gainer or somthing to get those extra calories. If you can get all your calories from whole foods though I recomend it. I used to use protein powders, weight gainers, now though get everything I can from food. Whole/organic foods are more anabolic than anything else!