If you’re someone who just can’t seem to put on muscle no matter how hard you work, you are considered to be a ‘hard-gainer’. A hard-gainer is virtually anyone who has a metabolic rate that speeds right up as you eat more food and stays lean and thin despite heavy weight lifting.
If you’re a hard-gainer, this isn’t to say you can’t build muscle, but make no mistake about it, it will be harder. Plus, you will not be able to use the same typical program everyone else uses as it will not work for you.
Understanding the biggest mistakes most hard-gainers make will help ensure that you aren’t committing any of those sins.
Let’s look at what you need to know.
You Overload Isolation Work
The first mistake is hitting the gym and doing 4 different variations of bicep moves along with 4 different tricep moves to go with it.
When you’re a hard gainer, isolate exercises need to get the boot. Instead, focus purely on compound exercises throughout your workout routine as these will give you the best stimulus for each rep you perform.
As a hard gainer, you simply cannot do a high volume program and compound moves eliminate the need. If you’re doing isolation exercises however, you’ll have to be doing more volume overall in order to get all muscle groups worked.
This can slow progress down.
You Don’t Track Calories
Next, you must make sure you are tracking your calories. You might think you can just eat whatever you want and leave it at that, but that is incorrect.
If you aren’t tracking, you’ll never know. Many hardgainers think they are eating sufficiently, but when push comes to shove, if they tracked what they eat, they are really eating far too little.
Track your calories. If you don’t see weight gain, add some more. Keep doing this until you see the scale moving upward.
You’re Still Doing Cardio Training
Finally, the last critical mistake you must make sure you aren’t making is doing too much cardio training. As a hard gainer, you need to focus on burning fewer calories and eating more. Cardio just works against you.
If you are doing intense strength training workouts, that will be sufficient to keep your heart healthy. There’s no need for additional cardio over and beyond that.
The only time you may do some very light cardio for 10 minutes or so is for recovery purposes. Sometimes getting the blood moving throughout the body can help speed recovery, so you can grow stronger faster.
Apart from that, rest. Hardgainers need to focus on moving less, not more.
So keep these quick points in mind. If you are making any of these errors, there’s a good chance you won’t be seeing the muscle building results you’re going for.