The science of bulking is based on the principle that you need to eat more calories than you burn. By going over and above your maintenance rations, you create a surplus which the body can then dedicate to synthesizing new mass (muscle and fat). For bulking to work, you have to ensure you take sufficient macronutrients to exceed your daily nutrient requirements. Macronutrients or macros for short comprise of protein, carbohydrates, fats and minerals. They are the components that your body needs in large amounts everyday for optimal physiological function.
If It Fits Your Macros
IIFYM is a way of dieting that revolves around meeting those daily macronutrient targets without necessarily paying attention to how you get them. In other words, you can eat whatever you want as long as it helps you meet your macronutrient nutrients.
IIFYM bulking works. It is like an improved form of calorie counting since it aims at meeting what is truly necessary for your body. Calorie counting focuses on weight loss or weight gain, while IIFYM dieting ensures specific nutrient requirements are met on a daily basis.
Should You Eat Junk?
Most people assume the flexibility of IIFYM offers them the freedom to eat junk. These processed foods are horribly deficient in micronutrients which you also need. Besides, their poor high glycemic indexes and their abundance of trans-fats make them very unhealthy.
Despite the relative flexibility that IIFYM bulking offers, you should ensure that your macros emanate from healthy sources only. There is a wide and tasty selection of complex carbohydrates, lean protein and healthy fats that you can choose from. This is not to say that you can’t indulge yourself once in a while. As long as you can work whatever food you are craving into said macros once in a while, you can totally get away with it.
Pros of IIFYM Bulking:
- Allows greater meal flexibility
- Favors novices who are new to fitness and aren’t ready to commit to strict dieting yet
- Favors the bodybuilder who is always on the go
- Promotes fat gain
Sample Meal Plan
There isn’t a one-fits-all meal plan for IIFYM bulking since daily allowances differ from person to person. To create one, determine what your daily macronutrient requirements are. For a regular lifter who expends 2700 calories daily, it could be something like 250g of protein, 400g of carbs and 80g of fat for a total of 3000 calories.
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