Why Bulking Up is the Best Muscle Building Strategy and How to Use it

Bulking up using the Zig-Zagging method is the fastest way to build maximum muscle mass while keeping your body fat low. Learn to use this Bulking up technique for fast weight gain.

Bulking Up is the best muscle gain strategy provided you do it right!

Your Goal is Simple. To build the maximum muscle mass you can in the shortest time possible. And Bulking up is the best wa to reach your goal.

Two ways to Build Muscle Mass:

  1. Bulking Up: Gain maximum weight, both muscle and fat. Strip the fat after reaching your weight gain goal.
  2. Build lean muscle: Gain lean muscle, avoid any fat gain.

So which is the best way? I will give the pros and cons of each and let you decide. I will also give you my favourite zig-zagging method below to build maximum muscle and minimal fat.

The Truth about Bulking Up Method

In the Bulking Up method your goal is simple. Eat and train for maximum weight gain, and if you do it right, most of the gains will be muscle gains.

You eat, say 500 calories more than maintenance, do little/no cardio and just lift heavy!

This is the strategy used by most professional bodybuilders.

Why I was surprised to see my favourite bodybuilder

On my muscle building journey I admired the physiques of many natural bodybuilders  and I looked up to them. But when I tried to match the looks of my favourite bodybuilder on the magazine cover and in the gym, I WAS SHOCKED! I count believe my eyes.

My favourite bodybuilder who looked so muscular and ripped on the magazine cover was looking fatter, though bulkier, but no where ripped! Why, I wondered! His reply?

Chase two rabbits and you lose both

You cannot Build {muscle} and burn {fat} at the same time, he said.

As it turned out most bodybuilders who give testimonies that they eat clean and train hard to stay in shape all year, are actually not telling the whole truth.

Between the 200 lb and the 250 lb muscular transformations, there is an intermediate photo which shows them weighing 300 pounds, fat, bulky and no ripped muscles to show for. This is hidden from us.

My reaction was similar to the many skinny guys whom I have shared this secret with - I will not accept a fat me. Being fat is only worse than being skinny!

But don’t worry. I have found the zig-zagging method to avoid the fatty syndrome and build lean muscle only.

But why do bodybuilders do this?

Advantages and Disadvantages of Bulking Up Method

Slight Fat gain during Bulking Up is ACCEPTABLE!


  • Gain weight quickly
  • Gain more weight


  • Chubby look
  • Insulin resistance

Insulin resistance means, your muscles and liver resist storing glucose and amino acids making muscle gain {anabolism} difficult. prolonged fat storage drastically reduces your chances of muscle gain by stimulating insulin resistance. For most bodybuilders, its bad news.

But pro bodybuilders don’t have to worry about this as they take plenty of growth hormone, testosterone to overcome insulin resistance. We natural trainers need to keep an eye though.

If that scares you here’s an option...

Build Lean Muscle Mass only

Lean Muscle Building is the slow way to gain weight

Your goal here is to gain lean muscle mass only, while avoiding fat gain at all costs. 

You eat just above maintenance levels, do enough cardio and avoid gaining weight too fast.

I tried this approach for years with little gains. Although this sounds as the proper way, there are advantages and disadvantages for it.


  • Lean muscle gains
  • No insulin resistance


  • Slow gains
  • May not reach genetic potential

My Experience on the Best Way to Gain Muscle

From my experience here's what I have found and recommend.

Bulking Up method can add 30 - 50 lbs of muscle mass in next one year and is your best bet for real muscle gains.

Lean Muscle Gain method can help you add 10-12 lbs of lean muscle mass, at best.

My recommendation: Use the Bulking up method. I have found it to be optimal as you will inevitably gain some fat along with muscle on your anabolic diet/exercise program.

Why Bulking Up works Like crazy for Fast Muscle Gains

To my good luck, my favourite bodybuilder explained his method and reasons for it.

He was preparing for a new photo shoot and needed to look massive. 

His plan? Pack on most muscle in next 2 months and strip the fat away in next 1 month and be ready for the shoot in 3 months time. So thats how the muscle world works, I thought!

I have followed this advice without any questioning and results have been great. Why?

Because I have realised that you cannot try to sail with legs in two different boats - weight gain and weight loss. The laws of science just do not work that way. By trying to chase two rabbits, you will end up with nothing.

And advertising claims end you up with nothing

Your own muscle growth or lack of it should tell you by now that bulking up is not how its advertised. Building muscle with losing fat is a lose-lose game but since it sounds too good, most marketers use it and it sells like hot cakes!

But the above incident did teach me something: Build as much muscle mass as possible, with fat gain as an inevitable occurrence, then strip off the fat gained with fat loss methods.

Gaining weight the right way became my new mantra. 

Realise this: You don’t have to look fat, but you will not be stripped to the bone during your weight gain phase.

Your anabolic phase should be aimed at 30-40 lbs of fast weight gain in 4-6 months and spend 1-2 months to strip extra fat and revealing those muscles.

But you need to do it right. If done correctly, MOST of your Weight Gained will be muscle with little fat gain.

What if you gain too much weight and look little chubby? Then use my Zig-Zagging technique...

The Zig-Zagging technique for Maximum muscle and minimal fat gains

Zig-zag your way for a ripped body and pure muscle gains

This method is simple and I learned this by experimenting. There is a saying, "If you are going in the wrong direction, course correct immediately or you end up on the wrong destination".

Going from skinny to fat is not our goal. So whats the option?

"ZIG-ZAG your calories whenever you gain more than 2 inches waist size in 4 weeks time".

Zig-zagging method:

On your muscle gain goal its inevitable that you add some body fat in even the most perfect conditions.

1. Reduce calories on weekends

If you know me, you know that I recommend 3 or 4 day per week workouts at best. The last 2 days of the week are what I call the true non-workout days. 

To minimise your fat gains, reduce calories on these 2 non-workout days. This means, no simple sugars around workout and no heavy post-workout drinks.

This will drastically reduce your caloric intake and force your body to use the stored body fat for energy. But beware do not use this on more than 2 days or your metabolism slows down and muscle gain gets difficult.

This will drastically reduce your chances of fat gain.

2. Track your weight every 2 weeks and change plans if needed

This means you regularly check your waistline, preferably every 2 weeks. Any 2 inch waist gain in 4 weeks means you should cut back calories for 2 - 4 weeks.

This ensures you wont carry any extra fat for too long due to the disadvantages mentioned above.

P.S. The NNMB Muscle Building Program is unique as it gives you 3 calculators for weight gain - Progressive, advanced and cutting.

Start with the advanced weight gain protocol, whenever you gain 2 inches waist size in 4 weeks, switch to cutting phase. 

Once you lose the unwanted fat you gained, get back to the progressive or advanced weight gain. 

Watch the video below to learn more.


  1. Bulking up using the Zig-zagging method is the best way to build maximum muscle mass in less time.
  2. Eat high glycemic carbs around workout - Its called Nutrient Timing
  3. Go for advanced weight gain plan, and modify your weight gain plan as and when needed.

To Your dream body,

Mateen Sidd

› Bulking Up and Zig-Zagging Method

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