T Nation

Effects of Stress on Muscle Gain?


Does anyone have any information on the connection between stress and muscle gain? One of the reasons I work out is because I have anxiety problems and exercising is one of the ways I deal with it. I am getting fairly strong. Well strong to me. I'm not on the 500 pound squat and 300 pound bp some of you monsters are on, but I'm getting there.

I have trouble gaining weight and I wonder how much of a connection that is to stress. Since I'm sure the stress/anxiety makes my body work harder.

I eat well and I do a lot of compound exercises, but I wonder how much further I would be a long if I wasn't such an anxious person.

Oh I'm 6'1 195 pounds. My Max squat is 260(ass to the grass, of course) and about 220 bench.


Don't stress over it. I have the feeling a good training routine will lower your anxiety for the better.


I'd say not a huge amount, as long as you're not chronically stressed to the point of elevated blood pressure, etc.

I think you'll see the most benefit when you fix a whole combination of factors that may not be ideal, which individually make a small difference, but together can help with noticable improvements.

For example, if you're stuggling to gain weight I would say fix your diet first. But, fixing your diet, getting a better amount of sleep, doing some meditation with using some mild anxiolytics to de-stress would probably be even more beneficial as a whole.


X 2 Eat, Sleep and train consitently as you get older you naturally thicken up.


i think the biggest issue with stress is that it'll effect the way you sleep or eat... thus effecting muscle gain...