Every day seems to bring a new workout program, but one size does not fit all. Consider your body type and how it responds to exercise and
diet in order to choose the most effective training program – the best results for the least effort.
Personalize your workout
Every day seems to bring a new workout program, but one size does not fit all. Consider your body type and how it responds to exercise and diet in order to choose the most effective training program – the best results for the least effort.
There are three main body types – Endomorph, Mesomorph and Ectomorph. Endomorphs put on weight easily, both as muscle and as fat. They can get big – impressively so – with heavy training and high calorie diets. But they put on fat easily too, so that diet needs to be carefully constructed to give good results. Mesomorphs generally respond well to food and exercise, and typically achieve athletic bodies with good training. Ectomorphs can eat almost anything and never seem to put on weight. It is hard for them to put on muscle, but they can look ripped fairly easily, again with the right kind of workouts.
Because he is able to pack on muscle better than any other type, the Endomorph can get away with over-training, at least from time to time. So this body type will benefit from Pyramid training. This allows the lifter to start light to warm up, then move from light weights/high reps to heavy weights/low reps, with little rest between sets. These guys can train multiple body parts in the same session – say shoulders, arms and chest – without the effects of overtraining. This works better to get the endomorph big AND lean than cardio.
The Mesomorph is the guy that can do it all – compound movements, single joint isolated movements, and he can handle fairly heavy or high-intensity workouts. For this guy, packing on muscle fairly easily, less is more in the sense that good form will achieve results better than piling on more plates. Lots of variety in exercises to challenge muscles from a range of angles. For this guy, the weights are his friend, not his enemy. He can train with gusto, and needs to take care not to rest long between sets. A balance is needed between resistance training and cardio to achieve a tight midsection.
For an ectomorph, every extra pound of muscle is a prize he has to fight for. Three workouts a week is as much as he can handle to get results. Compound movements that engage major and auxiliary muscles work better than single-joint movements, so think movements where you need to control the bar or weights as well as pressing the load – maybe using a ball and balancing on it while you press, for example. The workout should be intense, and followed by adequate rest to ensure full recovery.
Training for the wrong body type is the reason many of us put in the hours at the gym for no visible results, so think about what type of body you have and how to challenge your muscles to get the results you want.