Learning how to gain weight for a teen means discipline in all areas, weight training, dieting, getting enough rest, and supplementation. In the teenage years, if you find yourself having a hard time gaining weight, there are a few special things you have to pay attention to that older and more physically mature people don't have to.
For starters, teenagers usually have a much faster metabolism than when they get into their twenties and beyond. Far too many teens today abuse their fast metabolism by overeating on empty calorie snacks, candies, and desserts. If you are trying to gain weight and/or build muscle mass, don't abuse your fast metabolism by stuffing yourself with a bunch of useless junk. I assume you are trying to gain healthy weight, so it is important to get in habit of eating right. Shoot for at least 20 times your body weight in calories, and around your body weight in grams of protein. Spread your meals throughout the day into 4 to 6 meals, with no longer then a three hour time period in the day without eating.
Since teens are going through all sorts physical and hormonal changes, it is extremely important that they start off with a solid foundation in weight training. Emphasis should be put on compound exercises, safe and progressive strength training, and proper form. It is vital that teenage beginners get in the habit of performing correct form and that they start off with relatively light weight for the first two weeks. One trick to avoiding a plateau later on in a weight training routine to gain weight is to start off with extremely light weight, and to increase the weight ever so slowly each workout until you reach your maximum current potential around the third week. This will start a building momentum, so by the time you're using weight that challenges you to your limit on the amount of sets you're performing, your body will be ready to continue to grow and get stronger.
It is also important when learning how to gain weight for a teen that they use abbreviated programs, stick to basic exercises, and to avoid over-training at all costs. One of the biggest causes of failures for beginning weight trainers is that they misguide their ambition and get too overzealous and train too much, too often. Keep it short, simple, and with a focus on strength. One of the best ways for a teen to gain weight is to focus strictly on getting as strong as they can in the most basic compound exercises, such as squats, deadlifts, bench presses, bent-over barbell rows, and shoulder presses.
As far as supplementation goes, just remember this: supplements are meant to supplement your diet, not replace it in any way. You can build the best body in the world without any supplements, so remember not to get caught up in the hype of the supplement advertising industry. Gaining weight will always require the right workout program, proper dieting, plenty of rest, and hard work. Supplements will never replace any of these; at most they will help speed your progress.
The only supplements I recommend for teenagers are a whey protein supplement, a good multi-vitamin, and the occasional meal replacement shake or bar. Since teenagers are usually caught up in school five days a week, eating a meal replacement bar in between classes is more convenient, and much better than a candy bar.
One final key on how to gain weight for a teen is getting enough rest. Today, whether you're a full time student, a full time employee, or both, getting enough rest is always difficult. However, the laws of gaining weight are unbending to our daily circumstances. If you want to gain weight, then you have to get as much rest as possible, period. This means cutting as many if not all of extra curricular activities to a minimum. If you are burning more calories than you are consuming, then you just simply won't gain weight. Try to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night and take naps as much as your time permits.
This may seem like a lot to remember, but in a nutshell it's really not that difficult learning how to gain weight for a teen. Workout three days a week using a handful of the most basic compound exercises, progressively increase your strength slowly, eat at least 20 times your body weight in calories spread throughout the day, and get as much rest as possible. Follow this pattern and gaining weight should come as a natural part of you life.
Derek Manuel is the author of the best-selling How to Gain Weight and Build Muscle for Hardgainers. If you want to learn how you too can gain 15 to 30 pounds of solid muscle in as short as 8 weeks, or if you just want more quality information on how to gain weight and build muscle, please visit hardgainers-weight-tips.com