Off-season, muscle building, mass phase - you've certainly heard about it a time or two in the gym or even participated in such a phase yourself. In short, the goal is to build as much muscle - lean body mass - as possible.
First of all, it is important to understand that no single product will make you gain weight. You will only gain weight if you are in a caloric surplus, that is, if you eat more calories than your body burns. Thus, you are in a hypercaloric diet.
What does the body need to build muscle?
For successful muscle building, in addition to intensive training and a calorie surplus, the body essentially needs proteins and carbohydrates: Proteins contribute to building and maintaining muscle mass. Carbohydrates provide the body with energy during intense workouts.
Intense muscle training
With an intensive and exhausting muscle training you lay the foundation for muscle building: If you train hard, small injuries occur on the muscle fibers. When the body repairs these during the regeneration phases, the muscles become stronger and more powerful. Since the body adapts to the load as training progresses, it is important that you increase your training power evenly. This will keep your training progressive.
To effectively build muscle mass, you should eat more calories than you consume, i.e. eat in calorie surplus. Every day you should consume between 300 and 500 kilocalories (kcal) more than your total metabolic rate.
But be careful: The quality of the calories at the individual meals is important.
Your total metabolic rate results from the basal metabolic rate, which the body needs for normal bodily functions, and the power metabolic rate, which the body or muscles need for athletic activity. The power metabolism also takes into account your daily activity. That is, the number of steps you take, fidgeting, and your work activity are all important here. For example, a construction worker burns more calories than an office worker.
In order to not only maintain your body weight, but also to effectively build mass, your nutrition plan should contain more calories than you need for basic and performance metabolism.
Click here for our calorie calculator.
How proteins work in muscle building
Proteins are significantly involved in muscle building. They contain important amino acids, some of which the body cannot produce itself. The so-called essential amino acids. These amino acids are needed in muscle protein synthesis and should therefore be included in the diet in sufficient quantities. The most important essential amino acid is leucine, which activates or starts muscle protein synthesis.
Proteins are compositions of many amino acids. Through these, proteins contribute to the building and maintenance of muscle mass. As a tip for your diet plan: We recommend that you consume a minimum of 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
The right supplements - Which ESN products do I need?
Supplements are not necessary for both achieving a calorie surplus and building muscle. However, consuming them can help you achieve your goals easier, faster, and most importantly, better.
Due to the wide range of products, it can happen that the overview of the different products is lost and there is no idea about which products support muscle building. We list here some products and their benefits. This serves as an orientation to boost your muscle building and come closer to your goals.
ESN Designer Whey Protein helps you meet your daily protein needs. Our Designer Whey easily provides you with up to 23g of valuable protein per serving (30g). It can be prepared as a delicious shake - or perfectly mixed into your porridge.
ESN ISOCLEAR is a patented whey protein isolate that tastes fruity delicious and refreshing. Through novel, food-technological processes, the ISOCLEAR fat, lactose, disturbing minerals and unwanted whey flavor carriers are virtually removed. It also helps you meet your daily protein needs.
Ultrapure Creatine is a high-quality, tasteless, microfine powder and able to increase physical performance during short, high-intensity phases. Our Ultrapure is a laboratory-tested, micronized creatine powder with a very high level of quality and purity. Creatine can be supplied daily with 0.1g per KG body weight.
EAA contains all eight essential amino acids (isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine), which the body cannot produce itself. They are especially valuable during hard workouts because they are quickly absorbed and immediately available. EAAs essential to build muscle. EAAs are also found in proteins, so if you consume Designer Whey or ISOCLEAR, you are also consuming them.
Pro Series Crank Pump is a pre-workout booster that provides maximum muscle pump and training motivation. It is unique in its composition, considers cofactors essential for NO formation with anti-fatigue effect and contains the most effective ingredients in the highest dosage. Pro Series Crank Pump does not contain any stimulants such as caffeine.
This means it can be used regularly and at any time of day to benefit in any workout. This way you can maximize your training stimulus as you are optimally motivated and focused. If you want to know more about our boosters and their effects, take a look at our ESN booster comparison.
Designer Rice Pudding serves every bodybuilder or fitness enthusiast as an optimal source of energy. The special form of rice combined with sufficient protein (e.g. Designer Whey or Vegan Designer Protein) and a perfect flavor (Flavn Tasty) can be prepared quickly and is unique in taste. Especially the quick and easy preparation benefits many athletes. This also makes it easier for "bad eaters" to get their calories in.
The Rice Pudding can be consumed optimally as a pre-workout meal before training (about 1 hour before), or as a post-workout meal after training (up to 1 hour after). So you have the optimal energy supply either during the workout, or promote your recovery and replenish your, emptied by the training, glycogen stores.
Ashwa+ - today's time is becoming increasingly fast-paced and stressful - as a result, inner turmoil often arises and relaxation, which is very important for mental and physical health, comes up short. Stress is a definite muscle building killer. The less stress you have, the better your body regenerates. And since muscle growth takes place during these regeneration phases, it is important to minimize stress. Ashwa+ helps you protect your cells from oxidative stress.
ESN Designer Oatbars are ideal snacks that provide you with valuable energy whenever and wherever you need it - before training, competition or simply in between. With 490kcal per bar, you'll find it easier to reach your calories, which is essential to achieve muscle growth!
Of course, other products will also help you improve your recovery, strengthen your immune system and thus maximize your muscle growth. Other products that can help you are:
- ESN Omega-3
- ESN Crank
- ESN Boostea
- ESN Designer Bedtime Protein
- ESN Designer Protein Shake
- ESN Athlete Stack
You can inform yourself separately about the products via the corresponding link.
Conclusion: How to create your individual nutrition plan to build muscle mass.
Since every body needs different amounts of calories and macronutrients - proteins, carbohydrates and fats - it is not possible to create a universal nutrition plan for muscle building. Once you have determined your required caloric surplus, you should make sure that your meals provide your body with important proteins (2g/kg), fats (0.8-1g/KG) and carbohydrates (rest of the calories). Many foods are not only healthy, but also provide several important nutrients at once. For example, eggs contain healthy fats and proteins at the same time. Our supplements from ESN are suitable to support the body especially before, during, as well as after the training and in the everyday life with the muscle formation.
If you follow these basic tips when creating your nutrition plan, nothing will stand in the way of effective mass building.