One Thing to Build More Muscle


If you could only take one thing to build more muscle, what would it be?


First and foremost, knowledge is the single most important factor in being successful – in any endeavor.

Having said that, it’s not steroids.

It’s not protein.

It’s not even hard and consistent training.

It’s calories.

Why Calories Are The Most Important

Now hear me out, because I’m about to illustrate why.

Want to train harder and longer? Increasing your calories will give you the energy to do it.

Not getting results eating 200g of protein per day? Double your calories from 2,000 to 4,000/day and watch what happens.

Want better results from the same amount of Test, Deca or Dbol? More calories will get you there.

There isn’t a single facet of the muscle building process that isn’t improved, amplified or otherwise made easier than by simply eating more.

Consider the following…

In one study on overfeeding, test subjects having a fixed protein intake of 1.25 g/kg/day but with different total-energy intakes, showed that an increase in calories of a mere 15%… enhanced nitrogen retention more than 3 fold (from 7.2 to 23.8 kg/day).

When energy intake was increased to 30% above maintenance, nitrogen balance rose almost 5 times baseline (to 33.3 mg/kg/day).

Basically, adding calories to the diet is anabolic, and I don’t just mean it raises insulin levels– you get the whole array of anabolic hormones, and in the correct ratios to each other.

This isn’t unlike what happens during puberty, and almost impossible to replicate by arbitrarily shooting test, GH, insulin etc. later in life.

Want more proof? Look at the morbidly obese. Most of these people have lots of muscle (in particular, calves) due to the combination of 1.) massive overfeeding and 2.) lugging all that extra weight around all day (for years, in some cases decades).

When most people hear this (you need more calories), they know it’s he truth. Convincing them isn’t the problem. The problem is the practical application.

Establishing maintenance calories is step 1, but it takes some work/documentation so most people never get there. If you want to get in the ballpark, BW x 15 for most people is usually close.

For a 200lb person then, that’s 3,000 calories/day. Now add 20% more and you get… 3,600 calories/day. Some may need upwards of 4,000 (35% above maintenance) or more.

So how do you hit that consistently? Well, I’ve always said it’s a lot easier to drink 1,000 calories than it is to eat 1,000.

Buy not 1 but 2 thermos’s…. and one goes with you EVERYWHERE (the 2nd is a backup, or used when your primary thermos is in the dishwasher).

Bottom Line

You can’t over-feed forever, but it is the single most powerful thing you can do to grow muscle IMO. And it’s usually what most people are missing, so make sure you get and stay on top of it.

Hope that helps.

Posted in

Coach Rob Regish

Rob Regish is an internationally recognized name in the field of health and fitness. He's been a weekly contributor to for almost a decade, answering listener questions from around the world.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.