There’s no doubt about it – the workouts that you perform in the gym are of critical importance to your bodybuilding progress. Intense resistance training is the core stimulus that sparks the muscle building mechanism into motion and is the first step of the entire process.

However, proper nutrition is equally as important, and without it, your gains will be completely dead in the water.

This is especially true if you’re someone who considers themselves an “ectomorph”.

It typically means that you have a faster metabolism, a tough time gaining body weight and higher overall caloric needs.

If you aren’t paying attention to what you’re eating and how much you’re eating on a daily basis, you’re either going to slow down your gains considerably or short-circuit them altogether.

With that introduction out of the way, let’s get right down to it and show you exactly how to structure your own “ectomorph diet plan” for big gains in muscle size and strength. There are loads of different types of diet plans that you could use, you just have to find the one that works best for you.

I’ll start by going over the main principles and will then provide links to some concrete step-by-step plans you can directly follow at the end.


Calorie intake is at the heart of your entire meal plan.

Calories are essentially energy, and in order to gain muscle, you must create a “calorie surplus” by consuming more calories than you burn each day.

This will provide the necessary fuel needed to pack new muscle onto your body.

This is of critical importance. If you don’t create a calorie surplus, you aren’t going to gain an ounce of body weight.

However, this also has to be kept within limits. Aimlessly shoving thousands of calories down your throat every day is never a wise approach. Your body can only build a limited amount of muscle each day, and any excess calories will simply end up as stored fat.

Proper calorie intake will vary from person to person and depends on a variety of factors such as age, height, weight, activity level etc.

If you want a simple way to calculate this, just take your body weight in pounds and multiply it by 17-20.

That will give you a reliable range of calories to shoot for each day that will support muscle growth without going overboard.

Food Selection

Now that you’ve laid the foundation with your individual calorie intake, you need to hit those calorie needs through a proper mix of the 3 major macronutrients: proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

Keep in mind that proteins contain 4 calories per gram, carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram and fats contain 9 calories per gram.

Let’s go over each of these major macronutrients by discussing their roles in the body along with a list of good food choices for each…


Protein plays the central role of building and repairing muscle tissue and is the single most important macronutrient for anyone looking to bulk up.

The very best sources of protein are those that are ranked high on the BV scale (meaning your body will absorb and utilize a high percentage of the total protein content) and that have a favorable amino acid profile (meaning they are high in the specific amino acids that most heavily stimulate muscle growth).

Here’s a list of great protein sources that meet this criteria…

* Lean red meat (steak or ground beef)
* Lean poultry (chicken or turkey)
* Fish (any type of fish such as salmon, tuna, halibut, cod, tilapia etc.)
* Seafood (any type of seafood such as crab, lobster, scallops, prawns etc.)
* Lean pork
* Eggs
* Skim milk
* Cottage cheese
* Whey protein


Carbohydrates deliver energy to your brain and muscles to fuel all of your individual daily tasks as well as your workouts. The majority of your daily calorie intake (somewhere around 50-60%) should ultimately be derived from carbs.

The best sources of carbohydrates for your ectomorph diet are those that are high in fiber and are vitamin/mineral dense. This usually means selecting carbs that have been minimally refined and processed.

Here are some great examples…

* Fruits
* Oatmeal
* Potatoes
* Yams
* Pasta
* Ezekial bread
* Whole grain cereal
* Pita
* Quinoa
* Vegetables

Including some “sugary” carbs in your diet (such as cookies, chocolate and other treats) is fine as long as it makes up no more than about 10-20% of your total intake.


Proper fat intake will provide additional energy to your body, optimize testosterone levels (this is the central hormone involved in muscle growth), improve mood and brain function and protect your joints.

Aim to get a few servings of healthy fats into your diet on a daily basis from any of the following sources:

* Nuts
* Natural nut butters (peanut, almond, cashew etc.)
* Seeds (flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds etc.)
* Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines)
* Healthy oils (olive oil, flaxseed oil, fish oil)
* Avocado

Your Complete Ectomorph Diet Plan

So, you now have your individual calorie intake nailed down and you also understand the role of proteins, carbohydrates and fats in your program.

Below you’ll find a very high quality selection of daily meal plans that show you exactly what to eat and how much to eat based on your individual calorie needs.

Just select the plan that fits most closely to your daily calorie needs and you can get started right away…

3000 Calorie Meal Plan

3500 Calorie Meal Plan

4000 Calorie Meal Plan

4500 Calorie Meal Plan

5000 Calorie Meal Plan

– Sean

Here’s what to do next…

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