Why Calories Are Not the Enemy When Trying To Build Muscle

Updated on April 19, 2021

In the world of fitness, calories have been sectioned into quite the complicated corner. They have become, in a sense, both the ultimate villain and an unavoidable necessity. Debates centred on calories and their efficacy and desirability seesaw up and down in a seemingly endless heave and haw with opinions forming the basis of many such presentations. The only solution to this dilemma is developing and encouraging a more proper understanding of calories and how they work as you embark on your fitness journey.

Calories get a terrible reputation, so much so that in many fitness circles today, the mere mention of calories can elicit a response just as extreme as a scenario where one exposes a vampire to the sun! There is a misconception that the fastest way to negate any gains one has achieved in their latest gym session is to mess with calories. While this may be true, in a sense, that statement is not as all-encompassing as it is made out to be. Again, the key to finding that optimum point is understanding calories and how they work.

Calorie inclusion is akin to creating a key that is geared toward unlocking a specific lock. Just as a key is cut in one particular pattern that matches the grooves and dents for one particular lock, so, too, make differing calorie adjustments, and amounts work for corresponding fitness goals. As an example, let us explore the relationship between calories and building muscle.

At their core, calories are an energy source. The amounts of calories you take in directly impact your energy levels and overall efficiency in the gym. This ratio also requires a delicate balance. Too many calories will create a surplus, which the body tends to turn into unwanted fat. On the other hand, too few calories reduce the amount of energy you have available, thus compromising your workout session by making you feel tired and generally unable. 

Achieving a proper balance between calorie intake and workout intensity ensures that you have enough energy to meet your fitness goals as you work towards your desired result, in this case, that of building muscle. You may even be able to push your limits and add to your abilities in the process.

Sourcing Your Calories

Now that you have learnt that calories are not the enemy you had thought them to be, let us turn to explore how and where to source your calories.

It is not time to rejoice yet. You cannot assume that you now have free reign to eat whatever you would like because you need extra energy for your next high-intensity workout. Responsibly sourcing your calories is a vital element in the overall success of your training. 

The best, and most fundamental place, to source your calories from is good, healthy food. A well-balanced diet can go a long way towards providing the nutrition you need to build your muscle consistently and appropriately. Protein-rich foods like eggs, lean meats and others can be your go-to and help form a basis for proper meals throughout the day. Do not just focus on the protein. Make sure that you include carbohydrates and fats; otherwise, you will fall into a situation where you are not getting enough of what you need to see the results you want. As you do your research on what foods to eat as you attempt to build muscle, search for examples of nutrient-dense foods to help you on your way.

In case you are having a hard time finding that balance, after all, we have just established that you should take in relatively high amounts of calories to build muscle effectively, yet you run the risk of gaining more fat in doing so. Take supplements into consideration. Taking supplements gives you a way to increase your calorie intake without jeopardising your body’s muscle and fat balance. Supplements become a source of calories that are essential for powering a workout, without the risk of dangerous additives, which would present serious problems later on.

If you are looking for supplements that will aid you in your quest for muscle growth, try Optimum Nutrition: SERIOUS MASS. It is formulated specifically for those looking to increase their caloric intake. The supplements are prepared to provide up to 1250 calories per scoop, which is significant, especially for those that would have trouble getting the same amount from regular meals throughout the day. They are also designed to pump in just the suitable types of nutrients in the right combination amounts to get you adequately fuelled for your next workout. You may also take the supplements after a workout or between regular meals to give you that caloric boost.

Calories are not an entity to be feared when deciding to focus your fitness aspirations on building muscle. The right balance at the proper intervals will have far more significant and better results than any form of deliberate deprivation can give you. Use supplements as a safe and complementary source to help keep you on track as you make the adjustments necessary to see the results you would like to attain.

Throughout the year, our writers feature fresh, in-depth, and relevant information for our audience of 40,000+ healthcare leaders and professionals. As a healthcare business publication, we cover and cherish our relationship with the entire health care industry including administrators, nurses, physicians, physical therapists, pharmacists, and more. We cover a broad spectrum from hospitals to medical offices to outpatient services to eye surgery centers to university settings. We focus on rehabilitation, nursing homes, home care, hospice as well as men’s health, women’s heath, and pediatrics.