Skip to content

Bodybuilding Guide for Teenagers - How to Workout, Eat and Grow


Bodybuilding Guide for Teenagers - How to Workout, Eat and Grow
Table Of Contents

Are you entering manhood with a lean body, and it makes you feel inferior? Perhaps you have friends who look strong, and your slim form is giving you chills? These are common feelings among teens.

You are not alone in this emotional rollercoaster. Teens go through incredible bodily and emotional changes, and they can feel abandoned and alienated when adults fail to understand their concerns which lie somewhere between childhood and manhood. If your latest love is building muscles, don't be all emotional, you need to be systematic about it.

People think building muscles can be dangerous in teens, stunting natural growth. The only truth to these concerns lies in overdoing strength training. As a teen, you have to research the topic, create a plan, a diet strategy for muscle building, and then proceed. These are the necessary steps to success. You must know that it will take time and patience. It's not going to happen in days or even months.

Typically, it's the wrong expectations, impatience, haphazard workouts, and unthoughtful eating habits that will take you down. It's also important to keep yourself fixed on the goal; do not compare your growth with others; it will demotivate you. Keep your spirits high and expect rationally; you will have strong muscles and a sturdy body in time. 

Is Bodybuilding Safe for Teenagers?

During the turbulent times of teens, young fellows are too emotional about things, and you would see them trying to achieve everything under the sun, but they must be guided when they set themselves to muscle building. 

Bodybuilding in teens is not dangerous on its own, but it can stunt growth if it gets so intense that it takes up all of the body's energy. Teens are years of rapid and massive physical and emotional growth, and the process will require a massive amount of energy. So, watch your workout routine closely when you train in teens. 

It is very important to go slow initially. Do not just dive headfirst into muscle building. Take your time and let your body slowly gear up for the task. You should give your body ample time to adjust to the changes. Keep it moderate, keep it sane.

Emotions run high during teens; the child is transitioning into an adult. There are so many emotions, feelings, and just so many questions! One can easily develop depression and self-esteem issues when left alone and idle in these years. 

Healthy routines like the gym or weight training will help regulate emotions better and consume extra energy efficiently. Bodybuilding or resistance training will boost mental health, satisfaction levels, and happiness, along with muscle mass.

Equipment for Muscle Training

As a teenager, you do not have a lot of money at hand to have a fancy gym setup, but the good news is you do not even need one. You do not need anything more than a few basic items to start muscle building. 

  • A weight bench (You can do without it if you can't buy it, do your bench press on the floor)
  • Two dumbbell handles (these are not very expensive. As you start thinking about building muscles, you should start saving for some basic training equipment)
  • 160 to 200 pounds of plates (you can buy some used plates if you do not have the money to buy new ones. You do need some weight on the bars after all)
  • A pull-up bar (this is a very reasonable accessory)

Do not worry if you don't have any of these. You can try exercises that require no equipment at all. There is no shortage of options in bodyweight exercises when it comes to muscle building. There are also super reasonable training accessories that anyone can buy.

Muscle Building Exercises for Teenagers

  • Chest: Most famous exercises for the chest are bench press, inclined bench press, dumbbell flyes, chest dips, dumbbell bench press.
  • Back: Pull-ups and deadlifts are the best ones, but there is a full range of rows to strengthen your back like barbell rows, dumbbell rows, T-Bar rows, etc.
  • Shoulders: Military press, seated dumbbell press, side lateral raise, seated barbell press, 
  • Quads: Lunges and squats 
  • Hamstrings: Leg curls and leg lifts 
  • Triceps: Dips, Tricep extensions, bench dips, and skull crushers
  • Biceps: Barbell, Dumbbells, Hammer, and preacher curls
  • Traps: Barbell squats and barbell shrugs

Patience and Expectations

As a teenager, you should know that you will not build muscle as fast as your older counterparts. Higher testosterone levels help adults gain muscle faster than teens. So, you have to be very patient and consistent and move forward with authentic scientific information.

When you start muscle training as a teen, many things may be discouraging, like you may not see results very quickly, feel extra tired, or just do not feel like doing the drill day in and day out. To stay focused, you have to ease into training. 

You mustn't shift to the final gear right at the beginning: go slow and muscle up steadily. 

It is of utmost importance that you do not drain yourself completely from strength training as a teenager. The more, the better is not going to work here. Keep your energy tanks full because your body needs a lot of it to grow.

You may be blown away by the new energetic and strong, muscular feeling, but know it is neuromuscular adaptation. This is your brain communicating with your muscles due to strength training. Your actual muscle growth is going to take time. So hold your horses and go slow for far-reaching results.

If you train intensely, you will tire yourself too soon, which will demotivate you. One more reason to take it slow and let your body get used to the new routine.

Patience and consistency are crucial when it comes to muscle building. Adults will see faster results when training, but it will take time with teens because of low testosterone levels in their bodies. However, it's not useless and surely not hopeless. You will see results; only give yourself some time, and you will see the bloom!

Being impatient will ruin the whole scheme and will also dampen your passion. Keep your expectations realistic and be consistent. You will surely achieve your goals.

Here is a roadmap to guide your expectations year wise:

  • Year 1 - 12 to 16 Pounds of Muscle
  • Year 2 - 6 to 8 Pounds of Muscle
  • Year 3 - 3 to 4 Pounds of Muscle
  • Year 4 - 1 to 2 Pounds of Muscle
  • Year 5 - 1 to 2 Pounds of Muscle

Full Body Muscle Building Workout for Teenagers

Do not get carried away by the info you see online about strength building during resistance training; they are mostly about adults. Adults gain strength faster than teens because of the different hormonal balances in their bodies. 

  • 200-Pound bench press
  • 250-Pound squat
  • 300-Pound deadlift

You do not want to hit the gym every day as a teen and burn energy: you need that energy to grow. Do not burn yourself by training every day. Rest days are very important: your muscles will recover in those days, and you will better internalize strength gains. 

Follow this plan for gradual but solid muscle gains.

  • Day 1 - Workout A - Heavy
  • Day 2 - Off
  • Day 3 - Workout B - Light
  • Day 4 - Off
  • Day 5 - Workout C - Moderate
  • Day 6 - Off
  • Day 7 – Off

Workout A







Bench Press



Barbell Row



Military Press





Max Reps

Barbell Curls



Workout B




Goblet Squats



Push Ups


Max Reps

Pull-Ups or Inverted Row


Max Reps

Side Lateral Raise



Stiff Leg Deadlift






Seated Calf Raise



Workout C










Dumbbell Bench Press



One-Arm Dumbbell Row



Seated Arnold Press



French Press



Alternating Dumbbell Curls





Max Time

What and When to Eat?

As you hop onto a muscle-building journey, you might become a bit too concerned about eating too much or eating the wrong food. You may feel like eating a lot to make up for the lost energy or become calorie-conscious. You surely need to watch out for bad eating habits but starving, or calorie control is not for teens. 

As a teen, do yourself a favor and do not follow adults' muscle training guidelines. Your body is growing rapidly and needs massive amounts of energy to keep up the speed. You do not need to cut down your daily calories at all. Just find age-appropriate information before you start strength training.

1. Eat Good and a Lot

Fuel your body with natural and healthy foods, fruits, whole grains, protein, and good fats. You do not need to starve yourself or reduce your caloric intake while training. If anything, you might even need to increase your intake to keep up with the additional energy loss. 

2. Include Healthy Snacks in the Plan

It's natural to feel hungry between meals; do not hesitate to validate this hunger. However, do not rush to a bag of tortilla chips or chocolates for snacks because they are calorie-dense and yet do not fill you up soon. Find healthy options for snacking instead. Think of whole milk, bananas, nuts, fruits, etc. 

Eating just once or twice can leave you energy deficient, and you do not want that. Energy deficiency will stunt growth, and you will feel tired too soon. This means you may not have the strength to train at all and stop doing it eventually.

In other cases, your rapidly decreasing weight may trigger your parents, and they may stop your weight training. So keep yourself healthy in your muscle-building journey.

3. Do Not Avoid Carbs

You must not eliminate carbs from your diet. It is true that muscle is built with protein, and bodybuilders need more of it. However, as teenagers, your bodies need a balanced diet with all ingredients. Carbohydrates are essential for physical and mental growth and functioning, and eliminating them leads to multiple deficiencies. 

Only stop taking white bread, white rice, and extra refined carbs. Stop eating junk, but you must consume all good carbs. They are very important to energize your body and brain.

4. Include Good Fats

You might also want good fats in your diet. Do not get rid of all fats from your diet. They protect the human body from shock and are important for skin and hormonal regulation as well as good metabolism. However, avoid junk with trans fats and processed foods. Trans fats are bad fats, but you need all good fat sources for your body. 

These foods must be on your list of healthy foods, and you need to consume them all (some in meals, others in snacks)

  • Eggs
  • Chicken
  • Beef
  • Whole milk
  • Cheese/string cheese
  • Pork
  • Seafood
  • Turkey
  • Whey & casein protein shakes
  • Greek yogurt
  • Cottage cheese
  • Beans
  • Nuts & seeds

Supplements for Teens

1. Protein Powders

Your daily protein intake may be enough for natural growth, but you will need some extra protein to help with muscle gains, the recovery process, and better digestion. It comes in various flavors. It's great for improving your mood as well.

You need protein supplements for Amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins in the body and whey protein powder contains a great range of essential amino acids, which are absorbed and used rapidly. Grab a bottle of whey protein or casein to stay strong and build muscle fast

Whey Protein Powder

Whey protein is a convenient, nutritious, and delicious way to help you build muscle, lose weight, and boost your metabolism. Our whey protein powder will help you reach your fitness goal faster.

2. Creatine Powder

Creatine is one of the most trusted supplements in the world of muscle building. There are hundreds of researches supporting creatine and guaranteeing its safety for all. It's the safest supplement if you want to improve your workout performance. 

It is water-soluble and easy to find, and it benefits your body in amazing ways. Creatine monohydrate is great for everyone, and it's extremely helpful if you wish to see solid and fast results.

Creatine Monohydrate Powder

Do you want to enlarge your muscles and gain more strength? DMoose Creatine Powder is an excellent supplement for those looking to unleash their inner potential.

3. Multivitamin/Mineral

Nourish your body with important vitamins and minerals as you grow bigger muscles. These vitamins like Vitamin A, C, D, B12, Omega 3, and others will help boost muscle growth and accelerate processes that lead to muscle growth. Vitamin deficiency can be very dangerous during teens. You need to keep your energy high with good supplements.

All in One Multivitamin

Experience the DMoose difference with our Multivitamin. Designed to enhance athletic performance, elevate energy, mood, and promote overall health. Try DMoose Multivitamins today!

4. Fish Oil

Fish oil is another supplement you need to nourish your body. It will help your body in multiple ways, and you will love the effects. 

Omega 3 Fish Oil

Are you looking forward to a healthier lifestyle with fewer chances of sudden cardiac arrests? If you are, then "Omega 3 Fish Oil "is the best supplement derived from fish oil, which contains fatty acids that are widely known to reduce inflammation from the body and lessen the chances of heart diseases.

6. BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids)

Branched Chain Amino Acids are three of the nine essential amino acids that help build muscle fast. They are directly linked with protein synthesis and consequently with muscle building. You can consume them in food and take BCAAs supplements for a health boost.

Essential Amino Acids (EAAs) + Hydration

EAA’s are the ultimate sports supplement which helps in the maintenance of damaged muscles. Perfect for all athletes trying to gain size and strength.


Bigger muscles and invincible bodies are tempting for teens who are new to manhood. They burn to do everything that makes them look strong and sturdy. In their quest to look more manly, they might want to muscle up, and it's great. However, fancy the idea may seem, it's not going to be a piece of cake. 

You have to work hard for this objective as a teen and follow a strategic plan to reach your goals. Consistency and patience will do wonders for you, and so will a planned diet. High-energy food and consistency in the workout will help achieve the goals that look only too impossible initially. 

Article Sources

  • Effects of Vitamin D on Skeletal Muscle and Athletic Performance – Sogacot.
  • Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.
  • Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.
  • Kreider, Richard B., et al. ‘International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: Safety and Efficacy of Creatine Supplementation in Exercise, Sport, and Medicine’. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, vol. 14, 2017, p. 18. PubMed,
  • Reid, Siobhán, et al. ‘Neuromuscular Adaptations to Eccentric Strength Training in Children and Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy’. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, vol. 52, no. 4, Apr. 2010, pp. 358–63. PubMed,
  • Rossato, Luana T., et al. ‘Is There Sufficient Evidence to Supplement Omega-3 Fatty Acids to Increase Muscle Mass and Strength in Young and Older Adults?’ Clinical Nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland), vol. 39, no. 1, Jan. 2020, pp. 23–32. PubMed,
  • Vingren, Jakob L., et al. ‘Testosterone Physiology in Resistance Exercise and Training: The up-Stream Regulatory Elements’. Sports Medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), vol. 40, no. 12, Dec. 2010, pp. 1037–53. PubMed,

Healthier and Happier Life is One Step Away.

Get information on health, fitness and wellness with our weekly newsletter.

  • How to Use a Protein Shaker Bottle

    Protein shaker bottles are commonly used in fitness and health circles to mix protein powders, supplements, and ot...

  • The Science of Sweat: Why Do Overweight People Sweat More Than Others?

    Sweating is a natural process that helps regulate body temperature and maintain homeostasis. However, it is common...

  • What Is Nutrition? Discuss the Basics of Nutrition in a Nutshell

    Living a healthy life is incomplete without discussing nutrition and healthy eating. Before moving on to discuss t...

  • The Importance of Taking Dietary Supplements & How They Can Help You Live a Healthier Life

    Do you ever wonder if the multivitamins you are taking are even working for you? Do you believe that supplem...

  • 8 Steps to Fixing Tennis Elbow Pain While Lifting Weight

    When you lift heavy weight during exercise, you are likely to experience some pain in your elbows. The most common...

  • Top 5 Ways to Gain a Muscular Body Without Going to Gym

    Due to the fact that many gyms and fitness studios are still closed due to the pandemic, it's essential to find th...

  • Summer Hazards Unmasked: Stay Cool, Stay Alive!

    As summer arrives, it's important to be mindful of potential hazards and take steps to stay safe while enjoying th...

  • Fit and Active: How Exercise Snacks Can Revolutionize Your Daily Routine

    Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine doesn't have to be a daunting task. In fact, recent resear...

  • Start your fitness journey today!

    Take an extra 10% off your order.

    reach out

    Toll Free: (833) 366-6733

    5700 Crooks Road, Troy, Michigan 48098

    *By submitting this form you are signing up to receive our emails and can unsubscribe at any time.