Photo of Shane Duquette, Marco Walker-Ng, and Jared Polowick.

About Bony to Beastly

We help naturally thin people get bigger, stronger, and fitter. We've had tens of millions of readers and worked with over ten thousand clients during the past ten years, ranging from total beginners all the way up to college, professional, and Olympic athletes.

We've been on CTV (Canada's largest privately owned TV network) and WHYY (NPR). Our work has been referenced by Psychology Today and Big Think. My illustrations have been used by Omar Isuf, Jeremy Ethier, and Precision Nutrition.

Who We Are

I'm Shane Duquette, a writer, illustrator, and Certified Conditioning Coach. After graduating with a degree in fine arts in 2010, I gained 40 pounds while helping my roommate, Jared, gain 33 pounds. We posted our before-and-after photos on our graphic design blog.

Skinny guys started emailing me asking for advice, so I started spending my evenings helping them bulk up. I gradually assembled that advice into a system, and that system grew into the Bony to Beastly Program.

I've now gained 70 pounds and have over a decade of full-time experience helping skinny guys bulk up. I also got certified as a conditioning coach (via Joel Jamieson), with an emphasis on health and longevity.

My wife, Cassandra, is a nutritionist. She helps out with some of our nutrition articles and recipes.

Jared Polowick is our designer. He designed this website, lays out our guides, and runs the business behind the scenes. He's a certified personal trainer. He also runs his own fitness site, Outlive.

Marco Walker-Ng brings the expertise. He has a Bachelor's degree in Health Sciences from the University of Ottawa (BHSc) and is a certified Personal Training Specialist (PTS) and nutrition coach (PN). He also studied under Eric Cressey, the head strength coach for the New York Yankees.

Marco has gained over sixty pounds, and he has fifteen years of experience training clients both in-person and online, including high school sports teams, his university football team, professional football players, and Olympic rugby players.

The Bony to Beastly Team

As our business has bulked up, so has our team. All of us are naturally skinny, and we've all personally succeeded at building muscle.

Photos of SteveM, DanielK, and SunnyS.

If you send us an email, Sunny will get back to you as promptly as he can. Then, if you sign up for our Bony to Beastly Bulking Program, you'll meet SteveM and DanielK in the member community. SteveM helps Marco and I coach people through the program, and DanielK moderates the community and helps people track their progress.

The Bulking Site for Skinny Guys

Only around 3% of people are trying to gain weight. Statistically speaking, that makes us pretty weird. That gives us our own unique challenges:

  • Trouble gaining weight: It's incredibly common for naturally thin guys to have trouble gaining weight. Sometimes, we even lose weight when trying to bulk up.
  • The struggle to eat enough food: The only way to gain weight is to eat enough food. But when we try, we often run into problems. It's common to feel stuffed, bloated, or sick. You may have trouble physically fitting enough food in your stomach.
  • The battle against skinny-fatness: Some skinny guys are naturally lean. It's just as common for skinny guys to gradually become skinny-fat, especially if they aren't exercising enough, eating well, or living a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes it's hard to know how to fix it.
  • A narrower frame: We often have thinner bones and narrower frames. Sometimes we're taller. This is often called the "ectomorph" body type, although that term has a dark past.

We ran into all of those issues personally, and we coach guys through them every single day. However, we also have several advantages we can leverage:

  • Newbie gainsIf you're thin, your bone structure can support far more muscle mass. Your body is eager to pack muscle onto your frame.
  • Faster-than-average rates of muscle growth: When we average out the results our clients get, their rates of muscle growth are faster than you'd expect.
  • The option to bulk more aggressively: If you're skinny-fat or worried about gaining fat, you can take a slower pace, building muscle more leanly. But many naturally thinner guys can benefit from bulking fairly aggressively.
  • We aren't overweight: We aren't in a neverending war against obesity. Ask anyone who struggles with overeating, and they'll tell you how hard it can be. The calorie deficits, cravings, and yo-yo diets can be rough. But not for us. We're extremely lucky. We get to eat to satisfaction… and often beyond.

Our Approach to Evidence

We leverage personal experience, coaching experience, research, and expertise. We've bulked up, we've helped thousands of skinny guys bulk up, we read all the relevant research, and we consult all the top experts.

  1. We've been there and eaten that. We've all gained over fifty pounds of muscle.
  2. Marco has ten years of experience as a top strength and conditioning coach. He's trained college, professional, and Olympic athletes.
  3. We read all the relevant studies. We're also signed up for every high-quality research review: ERD, MASS, AARR, Weightology, and S&C Research.
  4. Our bulking program has been tested on over ten thousand clients over ten years. We're still working to improve and add to it. 

Our Approach to Training

We design our workout programs to help you grow bigger, stronger, fitter, and healthier, improving your appearance from the inside out. If you enjoy strength training, you'll find a hearty focus on the big compound lifts. If you like bodybuilding, we haven't forgotten the importance of isolation lifts.

If you're new to lifting, we'll teach you. Marco has experience working with clumsy beginners all the way up to elite athletes. He knows how to help novices become masters.

Marco also builds our programs to improve posture. That doesn't necessarily require dedicated posture work, just a lifting program that develops the muscles that hold our bodies in the correct position.

Our Approach to Nutrition

We believe in eating an abundant, nutritious bulking diet. A high volume of high-quality food. A diet rich in protein, carbs, healthy fats, fibre, micronutrients, phytonutrients, and probiotics.

We don't recommend junk food, but we don't restrict it. After all, we're naturally skinny. We aren't suffering from over-indulgence but rather from undernutrition. We need to add to our diets, not subtract.

You can take or leave supplements. Creatine speeds up muscle growth a little bit. Caffeine gives energy. Whey protein is a source of protein. But these are modest advantages.


One of the great misconceptions is that stress kills growth. That isn't even remotely true. Stress promotes growth. After a bout of stress, we release more DHEA, a hormone that helps us adapt. That's true of physical stress (such as lifting and cardio) as well as emotional stress. The catch is that we need to manage our stress.

Lifting weights, eating a good diet, and getting enough sleep are all parts of a healthy lifestyle, and they all help us manage stress. You can also do cardio, live an active lifestyle, create beautiful things, start a family, and strive for greatness at work. There's nothing wrong with going to bed exhausted, provided you go to bed early enough.

Time advances. There's nothing we can do to stop it. But we don’t need to bow down to it. Whether we’re working, working out, or lazing around, time is marching ever forward. It’s up to us whether that time leads to progress or regression, benefit or loss, hypertrophy or atrophy.

Refund Policy

We stand behind everything we sell with a full guarantee. No matter how skinny you are or how many times you've failed, we promise to help you build muscle. If you're unsatisfied in any way, we have an unconditional 90-day refund policy.