6 Weight-Gain Tips for Soccer Players

Although you cannot change your genetics and your tendency to fidget, you can boost your calorie intake. Here are six tips to help you bulk-up healthfully.

Eat Consistently

Do NOT skip meals; doing so means you'll miss out on important calories needed to reach your goal! Every day, enjoy a breakfast, an early lunch, a later lunch, dinner, and a bedtime meal.

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Eat Larger Portions

Instead of having one sandwich for lunch, have two. Enjoy a taller glass of milk, bigger bowl of cereal, and larger piece of fruit.

Select Higher Calorie Foods

By reading food labels, you'll discover that cranapple juice has more calories than orange juice (170 vs. 110 calories per eight ounces); granola has more calories than Cheerios (500 vs. 100 calories per cup); corn more calories than green beans (140 vs. 40 calories per cup).

Drink Juice and Low-Fat Milk

Instead of quenching your thirst with water, choose calorie-containing fluids. One high school soccer player gained 13 pounds over the summer by simply adding six glasses of cranapple juice (1,000 calories) to his standard daily diet.

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Enjoy Peanut Butter, Nuts, Avocado, and Olive Oil

These foods are high in (healthy) fats, and can be a positive addition to your sports diet by helping knock down inflammation. Their high fat content means they are calorie-dense. Add slivered almonds to cereal and salads, make that PB&J with extra peanut butter, and dive into the guacamole with baked chips (without the 'bad" trans and saturated fats).

Strength Exercises

Weight lifting and push-ups stimulate muscle growth so that you bulk-up instead of fatten up. Sooner or later, exercise will stimulate your appetite so you'll want to eat. Exercise also increases thirst so you'll want to drink extra juices and caloric fluids.

More: How Much Should Soccer Players Weigh?

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References:
1) Levine JA, Ebernath NL, Jensen MD. 1999. Role of nonexercise activity thermogenesis in resistance to fat gain in humans. Science. 283(5399):212-4.
2) Bouchard, C. 1990. Heredity and the path to overweight and obesity. Med Sci Sports Exerc 23(3):285-291.
3). Novak CM, Escande C, Burghardt PR, Zhang M, Barbosa MT, Chini EN, Britton SL, Koch LG, Akil H, Levine JA 2010. Spontaneous activity, economy of activity, and resistance to diet-induced obesity in rats bred for high intrinsic aerobic capacity. Horm Behav 58(3):355-367

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