Do you know what your body type is? If not: you could be wasting your time in the gym by training the wrong way!
If you’re not seeing the results that you think you should be, the type of training that you’re doing might not be well matched to what your individual body needs.
By determining which of the three recognized body types you best fit in, you can tailor your workouts to give you the best results.
What works for your training partner might be the total opposite of what works for your own body type.
Men’s Body Types
Let’s look at the three body types (technically called somatotypes) and how they differ from one another:
If you’re the tall, lanky, thin guy who can’t seem to put on much fat or muscle no matter what you do, you’re very likely an ectomorph.
The good news about being an ectomorph is that you don’t have to worry about burning fat. You have a fast metabolism so you don’t have to rely on intense cardio workouts to trim fat – because you likely don’t have much fat there at all. Even eating more food than you feel like often doesn’t help an ectomorph to gain weight.
Because of your fast metabolism that naturally burns fat, as an ectomorph you will want to spend very little time doing cardio or aerobic work in the gym. So if you hate the treadmill, you’re in luck.
On the other hand, you’ll need to ramp up your weight training and pay very close attention to your diet; ensuring that you’re eating more calories than you need, and that it consists of plenty of good carbohydrate and protein sources. Good shakes are like gold to an ectomorph, so use them to your advantage.
At the other end of the scale are the bigger built endomorphs. As an endomorph you need to put a lot of focus into burning calories, so high intensity aerobic activity is going to be an important part of your workout routine.
Depending on what you prefer, this can be in the form of regular cardio exercises like jogging. Or alternatively you can incorporate more intense (although shorter) circuit activities into your workouts.
Resistance training is just as important: the more muscle you build, the more efficiently you’ll burn fat as your metabolism increases. It’s generally recommended that endomorphs undertake weight training by striking a balance between isolation exercises and total body workouts.
Importantly on the food intake side, watching your carbs is vital and avoiding carbohydrates for the most part after training is important because that’s the time you want to be burning up fat.
Sticking to quality protein sources after a workout will help you considerably, but so will avoiding those unhealthy carbs at any time: they’ll go straight to your mid-section which is where endomorphs are so prone to storing fat.
As an endomorph you might not have trouble putting on muscle; but your propensity to store more fat means you might struggle with getting that toned look and achieving a really defined physique. That’s why consistent cardio activity is critical for an endomorph who wants to get a ripped look.
Know that guy with the perfect body? He’s probably a mesomorph. Or if you’re lucky, you’ve been blessed with this body type that seems to make it almost effortless to gain muscle and lose fat while being much more naturally lean and toned compared to the other two body types.
That doesn’t mean you don’t need to focus on quality workouts and eating well though. Consistency is key for the mesomorph and this includes both weight training and cardio work. Mesomorph’s shouldn’t do too much or too little cardio: a moderate amount is ideal (this will also depend on your overall goals as well).
The ideal workout session for a mesomorph is to lift moderate weights and include some moderate aerobic exercise. By correctly targeting the muscle areas that you want to build up, a mesomorph should be able to see pleasing results relatively quickly compared with other body types.
So there you have it: you are going to get considerably better results from your training and diet once you identify which body type you most closely fit into.
Remember: regardless of what body type you happen to be, the more committed you are to your workout regime and your diet plan, the better chance you will have to break through those barriers and get the body you want; no matter what your genetics are.