If you’re new to the world of GOMAD, this is the page for you. I’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions and answered them.
For even more information, check out the archives.
What is GOMAD
GOMAD stands for Gallon of Milk a Day and, as the name suggests, is the process of drinking a gallon of milk a day. This usually lasts for a month or two but the precise duration will vary from person to person.
Why would someone drink a gallon of milk a day?
There are two main reasons:
- It’ll make you big.
- It’ll make you strong.
You’ll need to follow a strength training routine for that second point to be true but GOMAD can be an effective tool to use in conjunction with one of those programs. Mark Rippetoe — the creator of the Starting Strength program — has been a GOMAD advocate for a long while.
Drinking this much milk is not a long-term strategy since there are certainly side-effects but it’s one hell of a kick-start. If you drink a gallon of milk a day, it’s impossible to not gain weight and become stronger.
Firstly, it has the macronutrients that you need:
- 2400 calories
- 128g fat
- 128g protein
There are no other foods that have that sort of balance.
Milk is also easy to consume and cheap. It’s not a magic bullet that will solve every strength or body composition problem you have, but it can be wonderfully convenient.
Do I need to drink a particular type of milk?
You must drink whole fat, cow’s milk. You can’t drink 2% milk or almond milk or chocolate milk or soy milk or anything else. People are always looking for an alternative, but those alternatives either fall into one of two categories:
I have discussed alternatives to GOMAD on this site, but if you’re going to go down that road, you have to accept that the results won’t be as dramatic.
How long does GOMAD last?
It depends on how much weight you want to gain. The longer you drink a gallon of milk a day, the bigger you’ll be by the time you stop. Makes sense, right?
That said, a month is the most common duration for GOMAD. It’s enough time to see results without putting on too much fat or experiencing the worst of the side-effects. I have, however, heard of people sticking with GOMAD for months on end, so it definitely varies between people.
What sort of results can I expect?
This will depend on what you’re eating for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but it’s reasonable to expect yourself to gain between 20-25lbs (or 9-12kg) over the course of the month. Most of this will not be muscle, but if you’re underweight, that shouldn’t be a big concern anyway.
Will I get fat while doing GOMAD?
It’s possible. The major benefit of GOMAD is that you can consume a lot of calories and, while those calories will mostly be burned during the day and used by your body to build muscle, there will surely be some that are “left behind” and are converted into fat.
I have good news though:
- If you’re becoming uncomfortably fat, you can stop drinking milk. By the time you’re feeling pudgy, GOMAD has probably done it’s job.
- For a legitimately skinny guy, fat gain will be minimal. You’ll simply be more “filled in” than before. I was nowhere neat fat at the end of my GOMAD experiments.
- Fat gain is inevitable anyway. It’s very difficult to build muscle and get stronger while maintaining a lean, muscular look.
If you’ve lived your life as a hardgainer, it’s not going to be hard to lose fat either. The bigger risk is losing your gains once GOMAD ends rather than becoming (and remaining) overweight.
Is GOMAD safe?
That depends on your definition of safe. There are side-effects. Some of those side-effects are quite unpleasant. But not everyone experiences them the same way, many are preventable, and some people don’t experience them at all. It really depends on the person.
At the very least, you won’t die doing GOMAD and any “damage” won’t be long-term. Just know when to stop if the side-effects become uncomfortable.
Should you do GOMAD?
I don’t know. The point of this site isn’t to sell you the idea of GOMAD. In fact, I think I’ll turn a lot of people off giving it a go. All I can say is this:
- Be aware of the benefits.
- Be aware of the risks.
- Decide for yourself.
As long as you’re aware of what it might be like and can set correct expectations, you won’t run into trouble.