Do Hardgainers Really Exist? Do Hardgainers Really Exist?

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Thread: Do Hardgainers Really Exist?

  1. #1
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    Default Do Hardgainers Really Exist?

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    Hey all, it's me again

    I got some nutrition recommendations from Robert Santana and have listened to the episodes on Starting Strength Radio regarding nutrition for getting strong. Robert recommended that I consume roughly 450 g carb, 100 g fat, and 250 g protein (I'm 27, 5'11, and weigh in at 135 pounds). My question is two-fold: Do hardgainers really exist, or is the lack of energy intake tied to not enjoying the feeling of being uncomfortably full? Eating upwards of 3500 calories sounds awesome and I find I can stick with it for a couple of days but after that I find I'm so uncomfortable that I end up dropping calories. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
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    In my experience "hard gainers" also tend to dislike eating. That being said, there are guys who legitimately have to eat an honest 5000 calories or more to gain 1-2 lb per week. They complain about it quite a bit but it works when they follow through. How about you follow through for more than a couple of days?

  3. #3
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    If you skip a meal because you were left unsupervised and "forgot to eat," you might be a hardgainer.

    If dislike popcorn and puffed breakfast cereals because you can spend 45 minutes chewing and still not feel full, you might be a hardgainer.

    If you get really confused when people say they absent-mindedly ate an entire bag of chips/tub of ice cream, you might be a hardgainer.

    Some of us just don't have much of an innate appetite. We have to learn to push through physical discomfort, just like everyone else.

  4. #4
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    Eating is also a skill.

    You'll learn what makes things easier over time. For example, drinking whole milk with whey powder and peanut butter is an easy way to get a lot of calories and protein for an added meal. If you keep at it and try new things, keep what works, and discard what doesn't, it will get better.

  5. #5
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    It's all habits. Typically I think of a meal as "lean protein/starch or fruit/vegetable if possible" then I scale up the portion sizes as needed.

  6. #6
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    It's like this: If you want to gain weight you have to consume enough calories to gain weight. That's it. There is nothing else. If you can't gain on 3500 you must eat more. If you can't gain 5000 (unlikely) you must eat more. If you are unwilling or unable to do that, and consistently, due to discomfort or any other reason under the sun, you will not gain weight. Eat or stay skinny. Those are the choices. Best of luck to you. I know it's not easy for some people. Now go eat [emoji846]

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant_edwards View Post
    Hey all, it's me again

    I got some nutrition recommendations from Robert Santana and have listened to the episodes on Starting Strength Radio regarding nutrition for getting strong. Robert recommended that I consume roughly 450 g carb, 100 g fat, and 250 g protein (I'm 27, 5'11, and weigh in at 135 pounds). My question is two-fold: Do hardgainers really exist, or is the lack of energy intake tied to not enjoying the feeling of being uncomfortably full? Eating upwards of 3500 calories sounds awesome and I find I can stick with it for a couple of days but after that I find I'm so uncomfortable that I end up dropping calories. Any suggestions?
    Grant, I've been literally wanting to try and find a handful of potential hard gainers for a hypothosis I have about them vs ....hard losers? Care to talk privately about it?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalan View Post
    It's like this: If you want to gain weight you have to consume enough calories to gain weight. That's it. There is nothing else. If you can't gain on 3500 you must eat more. If you can't gain 5000 (unlikely) you must eat more. If you are unwilling or unable to do that, and consistently, due to discomfort or any other reason under the sun, you will not gain weight. Eat or stay skinny. Those are the choices. Best of luck to you. I know it's not easy for some people. Now go eat [emoji846]
    What about that magic supplement that comes in the fancy container?

  9. #9
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    I've never called myself a "hardgainer". It's true that most people are not willing to put in the effort required to eat a lot. For me it was always the hardest part. For others, it's easier. But it's also true that genetics play a big part in how fast and easy you gain weight.

    Anecdote time:
    When I was younger, 20yo, I did a 3 month contest prep for a bodybuilding show. I ate exactly the same every day for 3 months, about 5500 kcal* - and lost weight. I didn't use PED. I'm 6'1" and went from a very lean 190lbs to an absolutely shredded 176 (79.9kg = under 80kg class). My point is, I lost weight at 5500kcal. I "trained" (exercised) 4 or 5 times per week and did 1h LSD cardio/day. Bigger guys than me always marvelled at my ability to put away food. I only started to gain weight beyond 190lbs when I dropped my ridiculous training volume. I knew a guy who weighed 30kg pure muscle more than me and used 2800kcal for his contest diet.


    *
    - 875g of white rice = 3010 kcal.
    - 2.2kg of poultry = 2300 kcal (? there are a lot of different numbers to be found online, this is using a lower kcal one).
    - sometimes replace 400g poultry with 400g fish in one meal.
    - teaspoon of Olive oil (50 kcal) and an apple (80 kcal) a day

    I'd do it different nowadays... but it worked :P

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Santana View Post
    What about that magic supplement that comes in the fancy container?
    Hrm.....like maybe a fancy gallon of magic whole milk daily?

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