Can You Build Muscle On Maintenance Calories? Know The Truth


Can You Build Muscle On Maintenance Calories? Let's Find Out

One question must have come to you, can you build muscle on maintenance calories or not? If you have this question in your mind, then you should read this article completely.

Whenever our goal is to gain muscle, then we have to increase the calorie intake in our diet, only then the size of the muscle increases.

Daily calorie intake plays an important role in gaining muscle. First of all, you will have to know what is role to be played in the goal of muscle building and fat loss, only then you will be able to understand all the things. 

What Is Maintenance Calories?


Maintenance calories are the number of calories that every person eat every day to maintain their current weight and do other activities. 

Calorie intake depends on the basis of the calorie expenditure of the person, which depends on some crucial factors like daily activity, exercise, age, gender, height, and weight. 

Maintaining current weight and meeting the energy required for daily activities are called maintenance calories.

Can You Build Muscle On Maintenance Calories?


To build muscle, you need a workout plan and a calorie-surplus diet plan. Nutrition plays a very important role in muscle building and fat loss. With a good diet, you can achieve fitness goals.

When you're on maintenance calories, you can only manage your current weight, You can't build muscle or lose fat.

Because it will take more energy to gain muscle size. When you lift heavy weights in the gym your body burns calories so you have to take extra calories than your maintenance calories. 

And those extra calories will help you to grow your muscle size.

If you follow a good workout program but your nutritional needs are not being met then you cannot increase muscle size.

When your weight increases, then you also have to increase the number of calories, if you do not increase the number of calories, then you can't gain size.

One study found that higher energy intake in combination with resistance training led to greater increases in both muscle mass and body fat in competitive male bodybuilders.

How Many Calories Should You eat To Gain Muscle?

To gain muscles, you have to create a calorie surplus so that your muscles can grow. If you increase calories more, then you will also gain fat along with muscles, so you have to keep this thing in mind.

If you want to gain less fat and more muscle, then you will have to increase a small number of calories in your maintenance calories, this will lead to lean muscle gain in the body and fat will also not increase much.

To gain lean muscle, you only have to increase 250 calories in your maintenance calories. If you are a skinny guy and want to gain more muscles, then you can add 500 calories to your maintenance calories.

But when your weight and muscle size will increase, then you will also have to increase calories to grow muscle continuously. You cannot get results for a long time on the same calorie intake. As soon as your weight increases, you will have to increase your calorie intake accordingly only then you can get continuous results.

If you stick to the same calorie intake for a long time, your results will slow down and you will hit a plateau because of which your results will stop.

So change your calorie intake according to your weight and goal.

Check out what is your maintenance calories.

Factors That Influence Muscle Building


Muscle gain is not achieved only by increasing calories, other factors are also important such as weight training, protein intake, rest, recovery, etc.

If you do not focus on these factors then you will not get good results. So you have to follow all these factors for the best results. So let's know about these factors in detail.

Workout Program

When you decide on a goal, you need a nutrition plan and a workout plan. Only then you will get good results.

The workout program depends on factors like your daily activity, your goal, your daily calorie intake, your fitness level, your joint mobility, etc.

If you are a beginner then I would advise you to take a workout and nutrition program from your trainer. Don't do workouts by yourself. If you exercise by yourself then the chances of injury increase because you do not know how to perform the exercise.

When you tell your details to the trainer, he will prepare your workout and nutrition plan in that way and then you will get good results.

Protein Intake

Protein is important for everyone, if there is no protein then our body cannot survive. So protein is the foundation of our body. And when it comes to muscle building and fat loss, protein plays a very important role.

So you do not have to avoid protein at all. But how much protein should you eat to gain muscle? To gain muscle you have to consume 1.6 per kg of body weight and up to 2.2 per kg of body weight protein. (Trusted Source)

For example, if your weight is 65kg then you have to eat 104g of protein on daily basis.

Here is the sample of protein calculation, 65 multiplied 1.6=104.

So you can also calculate your daily protein intake by this formula.


Water is very important for everyone. If there was no water, we would not be there either. Up to 60% water is in our body, and our brain and heart are composed of 73% water. (Trusted Source)

Water is very important for us. If we remain dehydrated for a long time, our body does not work properly, we feel tired, the focus on work decreases, and cramps can also come.

If there is less water in our body then digestion will not happen properly and our muscles and organs will not be able to get nutrients properly.

Dehydration can cause cramps, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, excessive sweating, etc. 

Water is also very important for our muscles. When we eat food, it converts into glucose and we get energy from it, but water does the work of transporting glucose and oxygen to our muscles through the blood.

With this, we get nutrients and oxygen and during workouts, we can contract the muscles properly and get the best results. 

An adult male should drink up to 3 liters of water a day and females should drink 2.2 liters of water a day. This is the requirement for water.

Take A Good Sleep

Sleep is also a very important factor for muscle building. When we do workouts then our muscle tissues get damaged. And when we take good sleep, then those muscle tissues regenerate and our muscles grow because of that. (Trusted Souce)

When we sleep then our muscle recovery process starts. With the help of the protein we eat throughout the day, our muscles recover and after recovery, the size of the muscles starts increasing.

That's why getting 8 hours of sleep is very important. If you do not get enough sleep, the muscles will not be able to recover and will also not grow.


In conclusion, Muscle building on maintenance calories is not possible as maintaining current weight and meeting daily energy requirements are the main functions of maintenance calories. 

To gain muscle size, a calorie-surplus diet and workout routine are necessary. Increasing calorie intake by 250 calories above maintenance calories can help in gaining lean muscle.

However, factors such as weight training, protein intake, rest, and hydration are also important factors in achieving the desired results. 

Continuous adjustment of calorie intake according to weight and goal is necessary, and seeking advice from a trainer or nutritionist can be beneficial for beginners. Protein intake, hydration, and proper workout programs are essential for muscle building. 

Frequently Ask Questions 

Can You Build Muscle On Maintenance Calories?

No, you cannot gain muscle on maintenance calories. Maintenance calories are only for maintaining your current weight and doing daily activities. If you want to gain muscle, then you will have to eat extra calories, only then you can build muscle.

Is A 250-Calorie Surplus Enough To Build Muscle?

Definitely yes, you will gain lean muscle if you eat 250 extra calories from your maintenance calories. But you will have to increase the calories after 4 to 6 weeks according to your current weight. Only then you will get continuous results.

What Happens If Your Lift Weights At Maintenance Calories?

When you do weight lifting while on maintenance calories, then you can maintain your muscles. It reduces the chances of losing your muscles. When you train the muscles on maintenance calories, then the size of your muscles does not decrease due to the nutrients and blood flow in your muscles, they remain maintained.

How Many Calories Should I Eat To Maintain And Gain Muscle?

To gain muscles, you have to increase 250-500 calories from your maintenance calories, then you can gain muscles. And to maintain the muscle size, you will have to eat maintenance calories, it will not cause muscle loss.