Preparing Americans to Serve in the Military, Special Ops, Police, & Fire Fighting 

Meet Stew | Testimonials  | YouTubeArticles  | APP Workouts  | FREE WorkoutsAbout PT Club 1-2-3 | Contact


Fitness Store

Military &
Special Forces Training

Police &
Fire Fighter Training

Beginner Fitness /
Weight Loss

Online Training
with Stew Smith

Published Books


Most Popular Articles: 

Navy SEAL Info
Army & SF Info 
FBI Training Info

Also Check out Stew on Fight Science - National Geographic Channel

sealpin.jpg - 3244 Bytessfjpg.jpg - 5513 Bytes1ranger.jpg - 3266 Bytes1swcc.jpg - 3028 Bytesaflogo.jpg - 8052 BytesFBI

How do I Gain Weight?


I receive this question often from young men and women in their teens and early twenty's.  I remember when I was in my teens, gaining weight was difficult, but it can be done with a proper diet and resistance training program.

Weight gain is something that isn't easy to do and you probably know this already. People who cannot gain weight usually have a high metabolism, which makes gaining so hard. The key to weight gain is to do everything BIG. You have to eat big, lift big, in order to get big.  This is your new motto!  A lot of people think weightlifting is the key to gaining weight.  It is an extremely important part, BUT, the other thing that is just as important is your food intake.

In fact, I have seen people gain weight by eating more calories and only doing calisthenics.  I have also experienced weight gain and weight maintenance while training for marathons by adding MANY more calories and a basic weight training routine.  So it is not the cardio that kills you muscle - it is the lack of refueling your muscles AFTER you workout.  This requires you to eat both larger portions of protein and complex carbohydrate rich foods.  See sample weight gain plan at the link - FREE Weight Gain Tips

So, to put it as simply as possible, there are 5 simple steps to how to gain weight:

1) Count how many calories you eat in a normal day. Don't change anything, just eat like you normally would and count how many calories you consumed. This is extremely important, so try to be as exact as possible. Also, weigh yourself.  If you are not gaining weight or losing weight, this number is your baseline caloric intake with exercise.

2) Starting the day after you counted calories, eat 500 calories MORE than you normally do. So, pretend that the day you counted calories you counted 2000 as your baseline. For the rest of the week, you would now eat 2500 calories a day. Instead of eating 3 big meals a day or eating all day all the time, spread those calories out over 5-6 smaller meals. Eat one meal every 2 and a half to 3 hours. To get big, you have to eat big! Remember that.  Adding more peanuts, almonds, even milkshakes will help you add great protein and healthy fats (in the nuts) and many calories with little effort.

3) Weightlifting! Get in the gym and lift! This is another important step to how to gain weight, so make sure you are doing it correctly. But if you do not have weights, go with a TRX, pullups, dips as they are together the HEAVY exercises in the calisthenics world.  Adding bodyweight squats or holding dumbbells in your hands while squatting / lunging is an easy way to add weight to your resistance muscle building routine.  See ideas at MJDB

4) At the end of the week, weigh yourself. You'll notice you are gaining just after one week! Now, don't expect to see a 10lb increase. Gaining anymore than 1 or 2 pounds a week is unhealthy and means you are putting on way too much fat or water weight. So look for 1 or 2 pound gains at the end of the week. You can be gaining 5-8 pounds a month! So be patient.

5) Here is an important one. At some point, you will stop seeing weight gain. At this point, you will have to eat even more. So, when you stop gaining for at least 2 weeks, it means it is time to start eating an extra 250 calories a day. Every time you see you haven't gained weight for at least 2 weeks, add an extra 250 calories. UNTIL you have reached your goal.  NOW, even more important KEEP WORKING OUT! Do not just eat to get big.  Work out to get big too!!! 

More tips for how to gain weight (extremely important!)

Stay away from too much fat! Even though weight gain is your goal, you don't want to be getting all your calories from fatty foods, thus gaining fat. Get rid of the chips and candy. No more fast food, nothing fried. Stick to high protein and high carb / low fat foods like tuna fish (and other seafood), chicken breast, turkey, ham, lean meats, fruits and fresh vegetables.

WATER! Drink water! Drink around a gallon a day, more if you can. Yes, that is a lot of water, but it is water that will allow you to gain weight. Just make sure you sip it through the day and not consume quarts during meals.  That will take up space in your stomach.  Below is a list of foods you want to eat to gain weight:

Foods that will assist with weight gain:

           Whole or 2% milk                  Milkshakes                  

           Salad dressing                    Mayonnaise

           Cheese                            Burgers

           Raisin Bran Cereal                 Oatmeal

           Crackers                          Croissant

           Peanut butter and jelly              Club sandwiches      

           Bagel                             Cream based soup

           Prime rib                         Steak

           Ice Cream                        Chicken

           Ham Steak                        Fish

           Peanuts / Almonds etc             Beans, Peas

           Potatoes                         Carrots

           Bananas                         Protein drinks


Eat these and add additional helpings if you are trying to boost your caloric intake to 2500-3000 cals per day in order to gain weight - even more if you are very active with your workouts. 

Feel free to contact meat if you have any questions. Also, read the Article Archive Guide for answers to Army, Navy, Air Force Special Forces, scoring better on the PFT, losing weight and many other issues with fitness in the military.


Surviving BUD/S

Special Thanks to Fit Deck and Stud Bar Pullups for donating to the
Heroes of Tomorrow Weight Room / Cardio Room project at the
Severna Park Community Center

Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL and fitness author certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the
National Strength and Conditioning Association. If you are interested in starting a workout program to create a healthy
lifestyle - check out the
Fitness eBook store and the Stew Smith article archive at

 To contact Stew with your comments and questions, just e-mail him

Books, eBooks, DVDs

flag.gif - 12306 Bytessealpin.jpg - 3244 Bytessfjpg.jpg - 5513 Bytes1ranger.jpg - 3266 Bytes aflogo.jpg - 8052 Bytes1swcc.jpg - 3028 Bytes FBI

Published Books / DVDs / APPs

Complete Guide to Navy SEAL Fitness      |    More Info     |  Book / DVD
Maximum Fitness - CrossTraining     |    More Info     |  Book only
The Special Operations Workout     |   More Info     |     Book only
The SWAT Workout - From Recruit to SWAT      |  More Info    |  Book Only
The Combat Swimmer Stroke Video     |  More Info   |  Download MP4
The Pre-Habit Workout     |  More Info  |  DVD only
New Fitness APPs Navy SEAL, FBI, Pushup. Pullups   |  More Info    |  APPS

Coming Soon - Navy SEAL Fitness with Weight Training

The Complete List of Stew Smith's eBooks / Books:


Fitness for All Levels of Fitness

The 90 Day Beginner Guide to Fitness    |  More Info  |  eBook, Book

Reclaim Your Life - The Erin O'Neill Program     |  More Info   eBook only

Veteran's Fitness - Baby Boomer and a Flat Stomach     |  More Info   eBook only

The Diabetic Prevention Workout   |  More Info   |   eBook only 

The Busy Executive Workout Routine    |  eBook only

Advanced Maintenance and Recovery Program   |  More Info   |  eBook only

The TRX Workout eBook     |  More Info   eBook only

NEW - Circuit Training 101 eBook      |  More Info   eBook only

NEW Obstacle Course Race eBook      |  More Info   eBook only

The Special Forces Physical Fitness Workouts


Combat Conditioning Workout       |  More Info  |  eBook, Book

Navy SEAL Workout Phase 1:  Beginner       |  More Info  |    eBook, Book

Navy SEAL Workout Phase 2 - 3:  Intermediate     |  More Info   eBook, Book


Navy SEAL Workout Phase 4  Grinder PT      |  More Info   eBook, Book

Navy SWCC Workout       |  More Info    |    eBook, Book


Army Special Forces / Ranger Workout  | More Info SF /  Ranger  eBook, Book


USMC RECON Workout       |  More Info  |  eBook, Book


Air Force PJ / CCT Workout      |  More Info  |  eBook, Book


The Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer Workout      |  More Info   eBook, Book


The Army Air Assault School Workout     More Info   eBook only


The Army Airborne Workout     More Info   eBook only


NEW - Upper Body Round Robin (UBRR)    More Info   eBook only


The OCS, ROTC, Service Academy, & Bootcamp Workouts

The USMC IST and PFT Workout      More Info   eBook only


USMC OCS / TBS Workout       |  More Info   eBook, Book


The Service Academy Workout     More Info   eBook, Book


Navy, Air Force, Marine Corp Bootcamp Workout   More Info   eBook, Book


The Army OCS and PFT Workout    More Info   eBook, Book


NEW Army PRT and Combat Readiness Test Workout    More Info   eBook only


The PFT Bible - Military / Police Standard PFT    |  More Info   eBook, Book


The Law Enforcement Physical Fitness Test Workouts


The FBI Academy / PFT Prep Workout (Vol 1 and 2)      |  More Info   eBook, Book


The DEA Prep Workout      More Info   eBook only


The FLETC Prep Workout - Ace the PEB      More Info   eBook, Book


The PFT Bible - Military / Police Standard PFT      |  More Info   eBook, Book


The Fire Fighter Workout       |  More Info   eBook, Book





Surviving BUD/S

    TRX Train Like the Pros

Use STEW20 code and save 20% on
UK GEAR Shoes / Gear