What is the right workout program for your body type? Each person has their own specific body type which is why there’s no one perfect fit for all when it comes to exercise and nutrition. Basically, there are 3 body types: ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph. Some people fall perfectly into one category and some will be in between. Let’s look at the different body types and what workout programs work best for each one.
What Body Type Are You?
To figure out what body type you are, check out this quick and easy test.
Ectomorphs are characterized by a thin build with relatively low muscle and fat. People of this body type have a hard time putting on weight, whether it’s muscle or fat, and is typically not able to tolerate large amounts of weight training or cardio. It might sound good to those of us who have struggled with our weight but believe me, ectomorphs are just as frustrated with not being able to gain weight as some of us are with not being able to lose weight.
Best training for ectomorphs
- Because the ectomorph can’t tolerate large amounts of training, they have to start of slow. If they go too hard too soon they’ll end up in an over-trained condition which causes many problems. They may also feel burned out and frustrated.
- Workouts should be basic and under one hour in length.
- Workouts need to be changed regularly. After 4-6 weeks on a program the ectomorph will need to change things up to support muscle hypertrophy.
- Be consistent! If an ectomorph really wants to put on muscle they have to train consistently.
- Form is crucial! This is true for everyone but even more so for ectomorphs. Ectomorphs will have weaker muscles so if they try to go too heavy and sacrifice their form an injury is almost guaranteed. They need to go lighter so their form is perfect.
Mesomorphs are characterized by an athletic and muscular frame with relatively low amounts of body fat. They put on muscle and lose fat relatively easily.
Best training for mesomorphs
- Go for high intensity. This body type can handle high intensity and high frequency because they have good recovery systems. Their stronger body type means they are less prone to injury.
- Try different weight training techniques. The mesomorph can handle the stress of training hard really well so they need to use techniques such as drop sets, rest pause training, negatives, forced reps, etc.
- Change it up! Change things such as exercises, reps and speed of reps frequently to keep your body from adapting and no longer making progress.
Endomorphs are characterized by a rounder body. They put on fat and muscle relatively easy and have a difficult time losing fat.
Best training for endomorphs
- High intensity weight training. Endomorphs tend to be quite strong so they don’t have to shy away from high intensity weight training. This doesn’t mean that they should jump into an advanced training program – they still need to start slow – but they will be able to handle heavier weights and longer strength training workouts. As they get more advanced they can start adding more advanced techniques such as drop sets, rest pause training, negatives, forced reps, etc.
- Short intense sessions of cardio. Endomorphs don’t generally have very good endurance but they need cardio to help them lose excess fat. High intensity interval training (HIIT) is going to be the best choice. 15-20 minutes of HIIT will be much more beneficial than long steady state workouts because it will burn more fat without burning muscle.
Figure Out Your Body Type So You Can Train More Effectively
Take the test in the link above to see what your body type is. Chances are you may be a mix of more than one type. Once you know what you’re dealing with it will become a lot easier to design a program fitness and nutrition that will get you the results you want.