Q&A WITH MUSCLEBEAR – DRINK A GALLON OF MILK DAILY? (GOMAD)
First off, thanks to all of you for taking the time to read my articles and sending positive feedback about the site thus far! It really means a lot to me when friends, teammates & online readers offer encouragement and support in what I’ve written. If you guys ever have a question or topic you want discussed in greater detail, contact me and if it’s within my realm of knowledge I’ll share what I know. I received a question yesterday from my good friend John Pepper about the “GOMAD” program:
A few weeks ago I started drinking a gallon of whole milk a day because I’m pretty thin and wanted to put on weight — not solely muscle, just weight in general. A friend heard me talking about it and said that I’m letting so much protein go to waste by not doing intense workouts. If you get the time, could you advise if GOMAD is a sound diet to follow? I would love to read an article about the GOMAD diet and a suggested training regimen, or a critique of it if Musclebear thinks it’s a mistake.
First off, thanks for addressing me as “Musclebear” even though we’ve known each other for the past 10 years and shared expensive sushi lunches while intoxicated on sake during work hours. You know that it’s a burly 310 pound anabolic abusing FREAK writing to you online and not some awkward Jewish/Asian guy that likes League of Legends. Anyway, I’m familiar with the GOMAD “protocol” and know your personal background as it relates to training history. Let’s give the readers an overall summary of GOMAD, along with direct feedback to you specifically.
What is GOMAD?
As it relates to the acronym, drinking a gallon of milk daily is a simple protocol invented by some random guy on the internet who wanted to be edgy and hardcore. Want to get over with the fitness crowd? Wear clothes with skulls on it, share your anarchical views of the world, and give newbies some over the top advice on how to gain weight. Anyway, GOMAD prescribes drinking a gallon of milk daily along with your regular daily intake of food. Internet lore has it that numerous newbies have gained weight from the GOMAD protocol, and I personally think it will work for anyone who stays on top of their regular caloric intake in addition to drinking an entire gallon of milk daily. That being said, I wouldn’t really recommend GOMAD as a long term, sustainable plan for putting on weight.
Why does it work?
- The biggest contributing factor to shifts in bodyweight (other than water & fluid level fluctuations) is your caloric intake versus caloric expenditure. In simple terms, calories in vs. calories out. “Calories in” refers to your food intake, whereas “calories out” is your expenditure of calories from physical activity & exercise. If calories in > calories out, bodyweight will go up. If calories out > calories in, bodyweight goes down. If you’ve been stuck at a certain bodyweight and suddenly add a gallon of milk into your daily caloric intake, you’re working with an excess of around 2,400 calories.
- Along with caloric intake being much higher with GOMAD, milk is calorie dense and a great source of protein. If you’ve been slacking on your protein intake, the extra protein from a gallon of milk will definitely help you reach your needed quota.
- Milk is also dense with fats and sugars, along with containing vitamins & minerals needed for bone health.
Why don’t I recommend it?
- Milk doesn’t digest very well when consumed in large quantities. Depending on your lactose tolerance, you may experience abdominal bloating, cramps, and lots of pooping until you’re ready to tap on your laundry basket for the pain to stop.
- Along with issues concerning indigestion, this will affect your quality of life during the duration that you’re on GOMAD. Some people might say to suck it up and stop being a pussy, but those people don’t know how to follow a sound nutrition program and probably can’t see their penis past their fat tits. Quality of life is important, especially if you’re not particularly at a high level of competition where you don’t need to sacrifice your comfort for progress. Likewise with training or exercise – can you imagine having to train while having abdominal cramps? Stupid, stupid, stupid.
- GOMAD is not a sustainable protocol for putting on bodyweight, or learning how to put on bodyweight from a long-term perspective. It can work for a couple months, but what’ll you do every time you want to put on weight? You’re much better off following a more conventional meal plan instead of doing hokey things in an effort to put on bodyweight.
What do I recommend?
- Keep track of your normal caloric intake for at least a few days. Once you establish a baseline of how many calories you require to maintain bodyweight, add 300-500 calories to your regular intake as a start. Everyone is different with regards to their metabolic rate, daily activity, hormone levels, and so on — but 300-500 excess calories on top of your regular intake is a good start for adding bodyweight. If you still aren’t gaining weight or not gaining at the rate you want, add more calories at incremental amounts.
- Follow a standard meal plan if your lifestyle / life obligations allow for it. If you find yourself in a position where you can’t seem to gain weight and you’re eating “enough” on some days, perhaps your intake lacks consistency. Once you have consistency established with your daily intake, results should show more easily.
- If you’re not a big fan of drinking milk until it leaves stains on your face like a Japanese cinematic piece with Hitomi Tanaka, find nutrient rich foods that you do like & can eat on a long term basis. Red meat is a great source for proteins and fat, while whole grains & pastas are a good source for slow digesting carbohydrates.
Back to John – with the point your friend makes about “wasting protein” due to a lack of intense training in your regimen, this is both true and false to certain degrees. First off, it’s false that the excess protein is a waste – any protein not absorbed/used by the muscles is stored as bodyfat. That being said, it’s true in the sense that you could have that protein make you more jacked & tan by exercising more rather than having it stored as blubber. It’s really up to you, and realize that you might not even necessarily need to drink an entire gallon of milk to reach the goal you want for weight gain. If you’re not training hard or burning up a lot of calories, you can scale it back to the point where you are still seeing results.
All taken into consideration, I have to stick with what I recommended: track your calories, stay consistent, and pick nutrient rich foods you like to help you with compliance on your weight gain. While it might seem a little daunting to start counting calories, you’re a smart guy that used to be a Scrabble Cubes champion on WorldWinner and made thousands of dollars every month playing videogames online. If you can finance a Ferrari by playing videogames, you’ll be diligent enough to perform something simple like counting your calories.
In the bigger picture of things, try to think of solutions that will work for you in the long term and don’t get allured by hokey shortcuts to goals. It might work a few times, but after awhile it will lose its effectiveness and you won’t have a gameplan you can fall back to for the remainder of your life.
Again, if you guys need help on anything, feel free to contact me either via here or on social media. Take care, and remember that MUSCLEBEAR IS A FUCKING FREAK THAT DOESN’T GIVE EDGY ADVICE! IF YOU WANT EDGY, GO BUYSOME T-SHIRTS WITH DONUTS AND BACON ON IT WHILE DEADLIFTING 225! LOL, YOU FUCKING PUSSY! IF YOU WANT TO BE THE MAN, AND HAVE A SMART PLAN, AND YOU WANT TO BE THE ULTIMATE FREAK WITH 22″ PEAKS, LISTEN TO MUSCLEBEAR!!!