Ectomorphs need to eat – those naturally lean physiques lead many ectomorphs to go the dirty bulking route, stuffing as much calories into the diet as possible in hopes of meeting their macronutrient values at the same time. This route can and does work for some bulking purposes. Lifestyle bodybuilders, on the other hand, know that what goes into your body really does matter.
The Two Different Types Of Clean Bulking
First, it’s important to consider that the bodybuilding community has not always agreed on the definition of “clean bulk”. To some, clean bulking simply means counting calories in an attempt to eat a specified amount over the recommended daily value (usually under 500 over the DV). Eating whatever fits into your stomach regardless of caloric intake would be a dirty/sloppy bulk.
The other definition is a little more casual. Clean bulking would refer to foods that are good for you: whole, unprocessed foods filled with nutrients and dense in calories. This particular definition would describe dirty bulk as those tasty sweets and fried food items from the local fast food joint. In a way, both definitions tie into one another especially when it comes to creating a specialized ectomorph training diet.
Why Should Ectomorphs Worry About Eating Clean?
Getting enough calories each day is tough as an ectomorph – unless you eat a lot of junk food. Unfortunately, those junk food calories tend to trick the metabolism of bodybuilders who indulge in them. Those quick burning sugars and unsavory additives do nothing to improve appetite and can trick your body into thinking it is full far before it actually is.
Clean bulking (whether you are referring to counting calories or eating healthy foods) is the ideal solution for ectomorphs who have to pack on as many calories per day as possible. Those cleaner foods might not be as tempting but they are definitely easier on the body, they infuse more macronutrients into the diet, and they help to reduce the amount of overall cholesterol and other unwanted side effects of poor diet.
Squeaky Clean Sample Shopping List
This shopping list will include items that meet these qualifications: relatively natural, filled with macronutrients, high in calories, and light on the stomach. The point is to meet your requirements without feeling bloated or overloaded.
Your muscles crave it. Eggs are the ultimate protein source in terms of cost and nutritional density, a great choice for bodybuilders. Red meats and lean meats are popular as choices with more substance: steak, chicken, and turkey are traditional choices but serious ectomorphs have no problem adding high quality ground beef. Fish like halibut, salmon, and tuna are extremely protein-dense as well. Add some nuts and beans for even more protein, and add a few shakes throughout the day if you need more.
2. Safe Carbs
The human body does not have an actual carbohydrate requirement, but this building block is essential for those who are trying to gain mass. You’ll find many bodybuilders eating lots of raw oatmeal during the bulking season, and the same goes for healthy pastas and brown rice. Bagels are extremely carb heavy too. Quinoa, beans, and barley are popular choices for the cleanest of clean bulkers. Potatoes are a good carb source if you want a nice heavy dinner.
Your body needs fats to maintain health and satiety – fats destroy free radial damage and help to control inflammation, making your workout easier as well. They’re also extremely calorie dense, a factor that some bulkers overlook when the protein and carbs get too much emphasis. Peanut butter and olive oils are the go-to sources of healthy fats for bulking bodybuilders.
You’ll notice that some of these ingredients serve double duty. Beans are high in carbs and protein, for example, and tree nuts fill every niche, etc. Try to keep the most useful ingredients on hand at all times. Keep an eye out for recipes that use your favorite multi-purpose protein, carb, and fat sources. If you need more ideas, check out this weight gain program for skinny guys to learn more.
Constantly recalculate your necessary maintenance and bulking requirements so that you can alter when necessary, but give your body plenty of time to adjust between changes. Your body will notice and respond to the change to clean in ways that you may not have anticipated, and it can take a while for your metabolism to catch up. Consistency is important – clean bulking is a lifestyle choice!