I’m bulking bro! – Coach James

Most of these topics on nutrition can become super deep and technical and talking about gaining muscle/weight is no different so I’ve chosen some the main points that I think are most important.

It’s very rare that I hear people asking how they go about putting on size and building muscle, it’s usually I want to get stronger and lose fat, there’s certainly nothing wrong with that but when it comes to increasing performance and generally being better at Crossfit adding some muscle to your frame is certainly going to enhance your performance and strength gains!

Firstly the best place to start is after you’ve got to a lean body composition. Bulking will 100% involve you putting on body fat, which can be a big deterrent for most people as when they that start becoming a little bit plump they panic and end up going back to a calorie deficit. Starting out lean will not only help you mentally but will also help keep body fat levels from getting too excessive and also your muscles are more likely to uptake the calories directly as you won’t have such a big energy reserve so it’s going to want to use the food more effectively.

Secondly is calorie control! This is still a major player maybe even more so than when in a deficit as you want to minimise fat gain.

Take it slow and be prepared to be in it for the long haul! 100-200kcals above maintenance is sufficient for building muscle and keeping that fat gain under control but this will take time and you’ll need to make some recalculations every few weeks, you’ll need to weigh yourself everyday to make sure you’re on the right track and you’ll be aiming for around 1-2lbs bodyweight increase each week.

Protein is king! You’ll be looking to hit the high end of the protein spectrum here 1.2g-1.5g of protein per pound of body weight, you want those muscle to have an unlimited supply so they can grow.

Once you have worked out your maintenance calories you can then find out your carb and fat intake.

Personally I found for people training 5-6 times a week 100g fat for guys and 75g fat for girls and fill the rest of your calories with carbs bringing your total to 100kcals over maintenance. As far a food choice and quality goes obviously “clean calories” would be better for health and micronutrients intake but you’ll have some extra calories to play with so enjoy it! Have some ice cream etc many people will actually struggle to eat the amount of food required to gain weight so sometimes calories dense foods can be a great asset and they taste pretty damn good. You shouldn’t have the need to blow out and have treat days when bulking because of this reason so it can also be useful to get rid of those bad habits.

Lastly would be training, you want your muscles to be hungry, hitting cardio workouts everyday ain’t going to make you jacked like Arnold so you need to lift! And there aren’t any better movements than a squat, bench, deadlift and strict pull ups to make you balloon like a Greek god not forgetting some good old fashioned bodybuilding exercises like bent over rows, bicep curls and split squats.

Remember this takes time and consistency with training and nutrition, building muscle takes so much longer than losing fat. Give yourself a good six months through those cold winters to do this and you’ll also be able to enjoy those festive holidays a little more without worrying about getting a little bit of a belly!

Testing Week 2!


A) 1RM Squat Clean

B) Every 2 min for 20 mins:
10/8 cal row
5 thrusters 60/40kg
5 Burpees

*Score is your slowest round

Met-Con Express!

A) 5min. of:
30sec. of DB Front Squats 20/16kg
30sec. of Rest
immediately into;
5min. of:
30sec. of DB Alt. Lunges 20/16kg
30sec. of Rest
immediately into;
5min. of:
30sec. of Empty Barbell Hip Thrusts
30sec. of Rest

B) EMOM Until you fail…
1 Devil Press 20/16kg
10 Air Squats
*Add 1 Devil Press each round


Classic CrossFit

A) Find 1RM Wtd Pull up

B) “Helen”
3 Rounds:
400m run
21 KBS 24/16kg
12 pull ups


Classic CrossFit

A) Build to a heavy double length of Yoke carry

B) 15min. AMRAP:
10 Cal of choice
Movement of choice
30 Double Unders
2 Lengths Heavy front rack carry

* Movement of choice
5-10 Handstand push ups
2) 2-8 Muscle Ups
3) Rope Climbs 1-3 Reps
4) Other gymanstic Skill based work

Met-Con Express!

DB Power Cleans 22/16kg
Handstand Push-Ups

Rest 2min.

For Time:

DB Push Press 22/16kg

Accessory Work:
5 Rounds:

40sec. of Alt. DB Bicep Curls
20sec. Rest
40sec. of Max DB Skull Crushers
20sec. Rest


Classic CrossFit

A) Find 5 Rep or 1 Rep Max Push Press

B) Find 3 Rep Max Ring Dip

C) For time!
30 cal row
30 shoulder to overhead 60/40kg
30 burpees over the bar


20 Minute Amrap

5 Pull Ups
10 Push Ups
15 Air Squats


Classic CrossFit

A) Pick One: 1RM Power Snatch or 1RM Snatch

B) Choose
“Grace” or “Isobel”

Grace : 30 Clean and jerks 60/40kg
Isobel: 30 Snatches 60/40kg

– Target time should be sub 5 Mins

Met-Con Express!

5 Rounds for Time:

15 Overhead Squats 40/30kg
400m Run


A) 15min. to get as far possible…
30 Power Clean and Jerks @50% effort
60 Pull-Ups or 20 Muscle Ups
30 Power Clean and Jerks @60% effort
60 Pull-Ups or 20 Muscle Ups
30 Power Clean and Jerks @70% effort
60 Pull-Ups or 20 Muscle Ups
… And so on…

Rest 5min… Gunna need it 😉

3 Rounds For Max Reps:
1min. of Max Cal Row
1min. of Max DB Thrusters 22/16kg
1min. of Max Cal Assault Bike
1min. of Max Devil Press 22/16kg
1min. Rest
Teams of 2. Only 1 person works at a time.