Are weight gainers worth your money?
If you listen to the companies that make/sell them, you’d think that they’re worth every penny.
But are they?
Well, to shed some light on this topic, I’m going to share with you my experiences with weight gainers.
How weight gainers got me “big”
The first ever supplement I bought was a weight gainer.
I still remember the day.
I was 19 years old, and I didn’t know a thing about nutrition.
The only thing I knew for sure, was that I wanted to get big, fast.
Hungry for knowledge and quick gains, I did what every gullible guy would do—I went to the local supplement shop to get some nutrition advice.
Back in 2005, there weren’t a lot of supplement shops around but luckily for me, my hometown had one.
It took me some time to find the place since it was a hole in the wall, but once I found it, I felt like a kid in a candy store.
The racks were jam-packed with the latest shakes and drinks, the walls were plastered with famous bodybuilders and at the counter, there was this mountain of the man.
The owner of the store.
His arms were the size of my torso and the veins on his arms looked like they were about to burst.
A true freak of nature!
Anyway, after a bit of chit-chat, I told him that I was a newb who was in search of a shake that will help me gain muscle mass.
After talking for 5 minutes about some bro-science stuff, he cut to the chase and said that he had a one of a kind thing for me.
He went to the storage room and came back with a 24-pound weight gainer bag.
He told me that this was his #1 secret for building big guns and ripped abs. And if I was serious about building muscle, I had to get this.
I was sold.
I paid an arm and a leg for that weight gainer, but I didn’t mind since I finally had the holy grail that would put my muscle growth into overdrive.
I was stoked beyond belief.
As soon as I got back home, I drank my first ever weight gainer shake.
It tasted like victory.
For the next few weeks, I’d drink these weight gainer shakes 3x per day:
And the results?
I got big.
But not big as in jacked and shredded, but big like fat and ugly.
Below you can see my weight gainer bulking results.
In the space of just 2 months, I gained 14 pounds of fat and no muscle mass or strength gains whatsoever.
So much for that weight gainer being the store owner’s #1 secret for building big guns and ripped abs.
Now when I look back, I can see that I made 2 big mistakes:
- I ate too much calories (a ton of food + the weight gainer shakes)
- I didn’t train hard enough
As a strength training newb, I failed to create the demand for all of those extra calories.
And with no way to make good use of those extra calories, my body did the only thing left to do—store those extra calories as fat, to be used some other time.
So, if you are new to the iron game, don’t buy weight gainers.
They’re a waste of you money and they’ll make you fat fast.
And even now that I’m skilled lifter, I still stay clear of weight gainers. The darn sugar content of these things is just too damn high.
But if you’re one of those guys who wants to have his weight gainer no matter what, then why don’t you make your own natural weight gainer?
At least you’ll know what goes into it.
If you want to make the best natural weight gainer on your own, I got a recipe just for you. I got this idea from none other than the all-time bodybuilding champion, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The best natural weight gainer (by Arnold Schwarzenegger)
I like how Arnold Schwarzenegger puts it in his book The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding:
In my own career, before there were as many commercial protein drinks (or bars) available as there are now, I always preferred to create my own drinks, since that way I knew precisely what was in them and what kind of nutritional benefit I was getting.
Arnold’s book is jam-packed with great advice and tips. And one of those tips is how to make the best natural weight gainer.
Each of the drinks below is made in sufficient quantity for 3 servings day, which are supposed to be drunk between breakfast and lunch, between lunch and dinner, and an hour or so before you go to bed.
And since the protein takes a while to digest, make sure to have the protein drink at least 1½ hours before your workout.
(protein = approx. 50 grams)
20 ounces milk or juice
4 ounces cream (or 1 ounce safflower oil and 3 ounces water)*
2 teaspoons lecithin granules
¼ cup whey protein powder
In a blender, place the milk, cream, eggs, and lecithin; blend for an instant. Wait several minutes for the lecithin granules to dissolve, then add the protein powder and blend until mixed.
For flavor, just use your imagination:
- a very ripe banana
- vanilla extract
- any other fruit or flavoring
To make the drink sweeter, add a tablespoon or less of fructose—do not use high sucrose foods like ice cream or chocolate syrup.
Dejan’s note: I use coconut oil instead of safflower oil. The medium chain fatty acids found in the coconut oil are very healthy and are a great source of energy.
(protein = approx. 72 grams)
16 ounces milk or juice
6 ounces cream (or 2 ounces coconut oil and 5 ounces water)
4 teaspoons lecithin granules
½ cup whey protein powder
In a blender, place the milk, cream, eggs, and lecithin; blend for an instant. Wait several minutes for the lecithin granules to dissolve, then add the protein powder and blend until mixed. Flavor as in Level I drink, except that you can use as much as 2 tablespoons of fructose for sweetness.
(protein = approx. 98 grams)
16 ounces milk or juice
8 ounces cream (or 3 ounces coconut oil and 6 ounces water)
6 teaspoons lecithin granules
¾ cup whey protein powder
And if you find that you’re not gaining weight as much as you want, even with the Level III, add 4 more ounces of cream to it.
These drinks will help you gain mass, guaranteed.
Just make sure that your training volume and intensity are high enough as to stimulate muscle growth.
Over to you…
Here’s what I want you to do now.
First of all, next time you’re at the gym, make sure to work your ass off so your body gets a clear sign that it’s time to pack some muscle mass.
Second, throw your weight gainer into the trash bin and go to the store to get some ingredients to make your own natural weight gainer.
Third, in the comments section below, let me know two things:
- Have you ever tried a weight gainer? What were your results with it?
- Share your favorite DIY natural weight gainer recipe.
May the gains be with you!
Image credit: Noodles and Beef
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