Imagine one being in a slight caloric surplus of roughly 500kcal above their maintenance value every day, but only training four times a week. Is it better to split the eating behavior in training and non-training days or stick to the same calorie intake every day?*

Since I'd imagine a subject like that would need like 300-500kcal extra in order to compensate for the training (weight lifting) on training days but not on non-training days.

I think a little example would describe the issue better:

  • An evenly distributed caloric surplus of 500kcal a day would result in 3500kcal for one whole week.
  • However going for a whopping 650kcal extra 4 days a week (training days) and only about 300kcal on the other day (in total also 3500kcal a week)

Would one of these options be better than the other? If yes, why? Or wouldn't that really take an effect at all?

*When training for muscle hypertrophy and eating to bulk up a little.

1 Answer 1


I think as long as the net calorie surplus of the week stays at 3500kcal (for your example) it shouldn't make too much of a difference in overall "hypertrophy gains" or strength for that matter. As long as you're applying progressive overload, consistency and tracking your lifts the 650kcal surplus days shouldn't feel too different from the 500kcal surplus days.

With that being said, I think the only scenario you would need to increase the surplus more than usual would be if you was in a decefit for 1+ days during the week, then at that point it would be necessary to bump up the surplus for the remaining days of the week to make sure you meet your net surplus for that week.

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