How to Eat to Get Swole (Without Breaking the Bank)

How to Eat to Get Swole Without Breaking the Bank

It shouldn't be difficult to go big on a budget. The problem is that bodybuilders are constantly assaulted with Instagram adverts attempting to sell them costly diet programs. Everywhere they look, there's another $90 'vital' supplement they must take.

But let's not kid ourselves into believing that you can't get a big-ass body without breaking the cash. This is how to consume a budget-friendly bodybuilding diet.

Eat to Get Swole Without Breaking the Bank

Learn to cook at home

Learning to cook at home is the first step. This is without a doubt one of the simplest methods to save money right now.

Consider it this way: You pay a big overhead for your food every time you eat out. You're not just paying for the ingredients; you're also paying for the chef, the service staff, the property rent, and the utilities. Oh, and don't forget to include a nice profit for the proprietor.

You can control exactly what goes into your food when you cook at home. You can utilize store-bought ingredients without paying a premium, allowing you to save money right away. You can cook using whatever deal you just got from the club store instead of paying exorbitant pricing.

Also, you’re not funding any other outgoings like staff wages or rent. All of a sudden, a spicy chicken salad that cost $1 to make costs a whopping $7.

If you had the choice, which price would you pay? It’s a no-brainer.

So, if you’re stuck in the habit of eating out – don’t. Save the food hall trips for planned special occasions.

Master your meal prep game

The bodybuilder's secret weapon is meal preparation. We're sorted with containers of lean protein as the small-framed people line up for their sodium-laden, sugar-filled sub.

Why wait to eat pricey alternatives when everything you need is right here?

Each box has everything we need to stick to our macronutrient strategy. This not only helps us stay within our budget, but it also means we won't have to settle for second best.

However, this is where meal planning saves money. To begin, you save money by purchasing your weekly components in bulk. When opposed to smaller, individually packed materials, purchasing products in bigger amounts is a simple method to save money.

Then there's the fact that meal preparing ensures you'll never be caught off guard. If you don't have time to prepare your lunch, it's simple to spend all of your money trying to find something that fits your diet. Instead, you'll eat something nutritious and wholesome that you prepared ahead of time. That's why freezing extra meals with the macros clearly labeled on the side is a good idea.

Do you want to give it a shot? To save time, we recommend investing in the following:


Slow cooker

Electronic grill

Rice cooker

Buy in Bulk

When it comes to bulking on a budget, this one is more of a hidden treasure - no pun intended. When you buy a lot of something at once, stores generally give you a discount. So, while you're shopping for groceries, look for the larger amounts.

Beans, brown rice, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, healthy fats like peanut butter, and a variety of protein sources are all cheaper when purchased in bulk. Simply make sure that anything perishable is cooked first and then frozen for later use.

Protein is now a major concern for budget-conscious bodybuilders. We all know it's the most expensive macro, especially if the quality is important. But it doesn't have to be that way. When buying chicken, go for the whole bird rather than separate pieces. Simply remove the skin and bones during the preparation of your dinner. If you can't afford steak, search for lean beef mince instead. Minced meat is less expensive than quality cuts and is also much easier to prepare.

Protein powders can also be purchased in bulk. Generally speaking, the more you buy in one go, the more money you save. If you find a brand you like, get a larger tub to help it last longer.

Canned tuna, on the other hand, is the most cost-effective protein option. Choose a low-salt variant that you can buy in bulk and use on everything. Grab a fork and eat it right out of the can, dipped in habanero spicy sauce. You'll get a tasty, spicy high-protein snack for a fraction of the price of some pricey shakes.

Bottom line: wherever possible, buy in bulk. While it may appear more expensive at first, it will save you a lot of money in the long term.

Key bodybuilding ingredients to buy in bulk


Frozen chicken
Whole chicken
Beef mince
Turkey mince
Canned tuna
Frozen fish
Dried beans
Protein powder


Sweet potatoes
White potato
Long grain brown rice
Long grain white rice
Whole-wheat pasta
White pasta


Natural peanut butter

Include several bags of frozen vegetables as well. They'll last longer than fresh, are less expensive, and provide important micronutrients for muscular growth.

Join (or borrow) the club

Consider this: do you know anyone who has a retail club card? If that's the case, take it!

When compared to ordinary chain store prices, club stores provide significant savings. Costco and Sam's sell their product at a trade price, which is significantly less than what you'd pay at a conventional grocery store.

However, joining these clubs can sometimes be too expensive. Isn't it a waste of money to pay the fee if it'll send you over budget?

That's why we recommend borrowing a card from a friend or family member. Better yet, invite them to join you. We understand you're a big guy, but you might need some assistance with your bulk-purchase bags.

Make the most of your rare opportunity once you're inside. Wherever possible, buy in bulk to ensure that your stock lasts a long period. This will not only save you from having to ask for the card again, but it will also save you money on gas. If you must visit more than one store, try to choose two that are close to one other.

Also, keep a Crack open a can of veggies or fruit, and adding the contents to a meal takes very little work. Simply choose low-sodium options wherever possible, and look for fruit that hasn't been sugared. If in doubt, check labels or use MyFitnessPal to scan barcodes. lookout for canned products when you go grocery shopping. These are frequently less expensive than fresh produce and can be stored in large quantities.

Keep things tasty with condiments

You'd be shocked how many budget-conscious bodybuilders overlook the importance of flavor. But the truth is that it isn't just for the wealthy and famous. Condiments are the best friends of your taste buds.

Hot sauce, BBQ sauce, mustard, and ketchup are all good to have on hand. They're affordable and can liven up practically any dish. While you're at it, grab a can or two of pasta sauce. You can keep leftovers in a plastic tub even if you don't use them all during meal prep.

Don't forget about the spices. Spice adds a dash of heat, sweetness, or zest to a meal for pennies per serving.

When rubbed with paprika and coriander, a boring chicken breast comes alive with taste. There's nothing like a Cajun and cumin sprinkle to spice up those sweet potatoes.

You also don't have to get the most expensive eye-level brands (this is where stores display their pricey goods). To save even more money, look for local products, get to know the owner of the spice store, or make your sauces.

Quit your budget breaking habits

Bad habits are one thing that could be causing your budgeting to fail every time. We're talking about our spending habits, which we don't necessarily recognize we have.

Consider where you could save a dollar or two each day. Do you have a coffee on your way to work every day, despite the fact that it costs $5? When Friday night comes around, do you usually end up at the bar?

Maybe it's simply a Coke from the campus vending machine in the afternoon. If that's the case, you're most likely breaking your budget due to bad behaviors.

But don't get too worked up because you're about to make some significant financial decisions. It's time to get down to business and make some constructive improvements.

It's a good idea to keep track of your spending for a week. Don't make any changes; simply retain receipts or a tab on your phone. Then, when you have some free time the next week, sum it all up. Even better, get an online banking app to keep track of your expenditures in real-time.

It's amazing how much money we've been squandering without even recognizing it. We'd probably be hesitant if someone suggested we spend the same amount all at once. Depending on your circumstances, you may just decline and dismiss them from the gym. They're insane!

Do you want to go into bodybuilding but need to stay on a budget? Yes? Get rid of your bad behaviors. A stack of vitamins or a 10-pound package of frozen chicken can be had for a few dollars here and there.

Final word on getting big by bulking on a budget

Bulking on a tight budget doesn't have to be difficult. All you have to do now is make wise decisions and become a savvy shopper at the supermarket.

The most important thing to remember from this article is to take responsibility for your actions. If you cook for yourself, you'll be able to afford high-protein, healthful, and nutritious meals. Forget about the fast food for a bit and work on making your culinary talents as strong as your bicep curls. Paying someone to do something you can do for free is a waste of money.

The next item on your to-do list is to shop wisely. While organic and grass-fed produce is superior, it is also more expensive. To save money, get a club shop card, go to the discount aisles, and buy in bulk. It's also a good idea to make friends with your neighborhood butcher. How about an athlete sponsorship that allows him to show off his best cuts? You can promote him online in exchange for a discount in the store.

Finally, immediately break any negative spending habits. You can live without the frills if you're serious about bodybuilding. At least for the time being. When the cash flow improves, nothing is keeping you from going to your favorite Starbucks once a week or more frequently.

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