T Nation

Impossible to Gain 22 Pounds of Muscle in a Yr


I read a baseball forum that covers the Texas Rangers. Yes, I am a baseball nerd as well. One of the pitchers (who was an absolute beanpole) supposedly gained 25 pounds of muscle this offseason. As part of the conversation I meantioned he probably gained a little fat as well. One poster responded with:
"Yeah...I crack up when I hear guys saying things like, "Yeah...I gained 22 pounds of muscle last year...so I'm getting pretty strong."

Sorry, but it's just not possible to do that (legally). If BMac gained 25 pounds over the last 4 months, it's definitely a mixture of muscle/fat, which is a good thing for the "stick-figure."

I then proceded to tell him that its entirely possible...to gain 22 pounds of muscle in a year, and heck...its even entirely possible to do that in 4 months.

His response:
"No, it's really not. Ask any trainer in the world whether you can go from not working out to gaining 22 lbs of muscle in four months. It's just not possible. In order to add a pound of muscle per month, you basically have to eat ~1.5 grams of protein for every pound that you weigh.

For instance, if someone weighs 200 lbs, they would need to eat 300 grams of protein/day to gain approximately 1 lb of muscle each month (resulting in 12 lbs of muscle gained in one year). Obviously, this is an approximation and it would also require that you work out constantly...along with eating other well-balanced meals.

And the more you workout, the more calories you burn...meaning the more you have to eat to gain muscle. It's just not very feasible to think that you can gain 25 lbs of muscle in four months.

Plus, for every 5 lbs of muscle that you gain, you typically add an additional 2-5 lbs of fat...as a result of the extra eating. So if you gain 25 lbs of muscle, you have gained approximately 40-50 lbs overall. That doesn't happen in 4 months...naturally. (http://www.thefactsaboutfitness.com/research/fail.htm)"

He keeps arguing with me. What an idiot. I just felt I had to share with people that would know my pain.


"Dr. Kraemer, a PhD in Kinesiology, suggested in a New York Times article that you "may" be able to gain 10 lbs in a 6-month period (http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/02/fashion/thursdaystyles/02Fitness.html)."

He just can't stop. Haha.


I know I've posted this before, but


hahahaahah i love that drawing


Best drawing ever!

And so true of every internet forum in the world.


That drawing is so true it's scary!



I can understand the OP's frustration though.
Watched some half-assed documentary thing recently in German TV where some moron suggested that the most you can gain is 100-300 grams of muscle per week, and they weren't talking about advanced guys or anything...

I would have taken up sewing instead of bbing a long time ago if that were the case.


if only we had administrators who monitored whats being posted......oh wait we do....


Who is coming up with these bullshit rules for how much someone can gain?

There is ZERO scientific literature focused on how much muscle someone can POSSIBLY gain in a given amount of time.

To even come up with some generic number is to imply all humans have the exact same genetic ability to gain muscle.

It is not impossible to gain 20lbs of muscle in a year. Whether YOU alone have that ability is something different all together.


You'd have to have a large frame, no?

Methinks a 5'10 170 is never putting on 22lbs of muscle in a 12-month period.


Even if they did studies on this, every study I've seen goes something like this: Group A was trained on a resistance program...
Stop it right there. What kind of program, diet etc were they doing?
I'll bet my bank account that it's some men's health program with laughable progression coupled with a diet that amounts to 2000 cals a day at most. If they even control diet and training at all.


It's so true of me it's not even funny.


don't worry bud, He'll never know the "secret" that we know. Shit, there's a bunch of guys on this site who aren't even incredibly large that have done that.


Gee, you don't think any guys with "big frames" started out weighing less than 170lbs?


If anything that small dude has a much better chance at it as long as he actually eats food. He could probably put on 22lbs(obviously not all muscle) in like 3 months, lets say half of that is muscle, 11lbs in the remaining 9 is a joke. And that's not a big stretch of the imagination for an athlete untrained in the weight room getting his initial burst of gains.


Well, considering the title is "22 pounds of muscle", not 11 pounds of muscle and 11 pounds of fat...


in mid 2006 i was 148lbs, in Fall 07' i stopped training until late winter 2008. i now weigh 203lbs.

that's 55lbs. my bf% was 10-12% in 2006 it's currently 12%-15%. i don't have the greatest genetics.

i eat a lot, frequently...i train hard whereby vomiting on leg day is a distinct possibility from week to week.

22lbs is achievable.

Note: i'm still a skinny newbie. three years of training puts me in the second grade approximately. my friends tell me i'm getting BIG, all things are relative i suppose.


Not impossible. That's less than 2 lbs a month. Assuming you can keep increasing your calories at proper intervals, it's entirely possible to do that. That's .5 lbs a week of muscle.

Now I will grant you that a pro baseball player only has 10-12 weeks off-season, and during season has waaaaay too many games too frequently to make that 22 lb gain easy work, but it is still possible for someone dedicated.


I think this depends on the relative level of muscle mass an athlete has during a time frame. For example football players. They may loose a considerable amount of muscle mass during the season.

The case where this is not just possible, but likely, is when injuries occur. The body reponds faster than the previous time carrying X level of muscularity.

I was gonna mention the Casey Viator's experiment, but most of you know under which circumstances it was.


With that kind of thinking? NO.