Body Types and Training
Today’s article is going to be about training and nutrition to fit your body type. If you’ve read my starting a workout article, you’ll have seen that I outlined that there are 3 main body-types that we come in. If you haven’t read that article, I’m going to quickly describe the 3 main body-types so you can figure out what you are before you follow the guidelines that I provide for each body-type :
Ectomorph: This body-type is generally known as the tall, skinny guy. If you have this body-type, you may find that you have a hard time gaining weight, muscle growth takes longer, and you have very little muscle and fat on your body. The benefits that ectomorphs have over the two other body-types are that the muscle gains that they make are generally leaner and more solid gains.
Endomorph: The bigger, heavier set body-type. Endomorphs are usually rounder, soft-bodied, and have underdeveloped muscle. This body-type has a hard time losing weight, but can put on muscle and fat fairly easily. The benefits that endomorphs have over the two other body-types is that they generally gain strength fairly quickly.
Mesomorph: Mesomorphs are usually athletic, naturally muscular and can gain and lose weight and muscle easily. They are usually considered genetically gifted and can gain muscle and stay lean, if their nutrition is on par.
Now that you’ve assessed your body-type with the descriptions that were provided, we can go on with the workouts and nutrition. I have done my best to outline what type of training you should follow and how you should approach your nutrition for each body-type. Though there are 3 main body-types and you may find that you fit more than one, you need to figure out what body type traits you dominantly portray.
Ectomorphs: Your main goal to gain weight and muscle is best approached by performing heavy compound exercises (bench press, dead lifts, squats, etc.). Your workouts should be slower with longer rest periods (anywhere between 2-5 minutes) between sets for optimal strength performance. If you’re currently training every day, you’re going to have to cut that down. Ectomorphs should lower the frequency of their training to allow for optimal recovery time and growth. It is recommended that training is kept to 3 times a week, (4 maximum) and that cardio be kept to a minimum for the reason of conserving calories so your body can utilize it for growth and muscle repair.
On the nutrition side, ectomorphs require a great deal of calories to put on weight and they need to eat a lot on a consistent basis. My biggest tip here is to eat foods that are higher in healthy fats to help meet the calorie needs and any foods that help reach daily caloric needs.
Endomorphs: You need to begin by focusing your training around fat loss and that should be top priority. Your weight training should consist of higher volume workouts with shorter rest periods. This will allow for more calories to be burnt off. Super setting exercises is ideal and recommended for this type of body and cardio should be performed every day and after every single training session for 30-45 minutes. Your training frequency should be 4 to 5 times a week to increase muscle mass to fat ratio.
On the nutrition side, this body type should focus on being in a calorie deficit to lose weight and each meal should be based primarily around lean protein and vegetables. It is recommended that processed foods, sugars, sweets and junk food should be stayed away from.
Mesomorphs: If you’re a mesomorph, training can be performed more frequently than ectomorphs. The body deals well with higher volume and more frequent workouts (up to 5 times a week). Many mesomorphs can easily focus on either muscle gain or weight loss as they please and most implement a bulking and cutting phase in order to add size.
On the nutrition side, mesomorphs have to eat according to their specific goals of gaining muscle or losing weight.
This pretty much sums up the training and nutritional aspect of each body-type. When you develop a more mature and muscular body through years of training, you will find that your body will start to resemble more of a mesomorph body-type. Though this does happen, you will always have to focus on your trouble spots that your body-type has.