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Is Your Workout Plan Working For You

by Ryan Peters
different body types

The idea that the workouts we spend hours performing are useless is something that we all fear. We ask people with the ideal body what they do at the gym, thinking it’s going to help give us a clue to what we should be doing too. However, days turn into weeks and weeks turn into months of doing the same routines and only noticing minimal changes, nothing near our goal. Should you change your diet? Should you spend more time working out? What are you doing wrong? We all ask ourselves these questions, and the reason why we ask ourselves these things is simply that different workouts work for different people. However, how do you know if your workout plan is working? The answer is simple.

Body Types

First, you must take into consideration your body type. As most of us know already, human bodies are nowhere near identical, and we all vary in shape and height. However, most people seem to agree that there are three male body types: ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph.

Ectomorph Body Type

The ectomorph body type is also known as the ‘hard gainer’. This body type is the leanest of the three. Someone who has an ectomorph body type has a lean muscle mass, low body fat index, delicate bone structure and a small frame, and an underdeveloped chest. This body type can be any height but is usually seen in taller men. Men with this body type have a lot of trouble gaining weight and have a very fast metabolism.

Mesomorph Body Type

fit shirtless guy in gymThe mesomorph body type is the most common body type in men. The characteristics of a mesomorph body type would naturally have somewhat of an athletic build, well-defined muscles, a sturdy frame, a rectangular-shaped body, and normal metabolism. Someone with a mesomorph body type would be average height, generally strong, and would gain fat easily. Luckily, they also have an advantage at the gym.

Endomorph Body Type

Finally, the endomorph body type is opposite of the ectomorph body. The endomorph body is naturally stocky with a solid build. A man who has an endomorph body type would have thick arms and legs, strong upper legs, undefined and soft muscles, and slow metabolism. They’d have lots of trouble losing fat and would luckily be able to gain muscle easily.

Ectomorph Body Type Workout

If you match the characteristics of an ectomorph body type and consider yourself to have an ectomorph body, then it’s very probable your main priority in the gym is building muscle. The reason you have so much trouble gaining muscle is because of your extremely fast metabolism that burns calories quicker than normal, making muscle growth very difficult. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t achieve muscle growth; it just means you have to focus more on it. A customized workout that focuses on large muscle groups is needed if you want to maintain muscle mass as well as weight mass, as well as high caloric intake. You should train on a regular basis with sufficient intensity. Someone with an ectomorph body type would have very slow progress, and this is normally expected due to your fast metabolism. A hard gainer would have to hit the gym around 3 days a week, with two alternating routines. Barbell squats, bench press, and shrugs are very helpful, and weighted pull-ups, lying triceps press, and standing calf presses can also show progress for this body type.

Mesomorph Body Type Workout

If you have a mesomorph body type, you’ll notice that gaining muscle and keeping an athletic physique isn’t too unattainable.  Due to their heavy bone and muscle structure, gaining muscle isn’t too hard and doesn’t require any form of extensive workout, but should still be monitored. Having a mesomorph body type means your muscles are naturally dense, which means lifting weights that have a moderate to heavy level of intensity should be enough to show some changes. Multiple sets of heavy lifting with limited rests in between should be performed around 5 days in a row to stimulate muscle growth.

young man lifting weights in gymAn ideal workout for a mesomorph body type would be to perform eight to twelve repetitions of around three to four exercises, which strengthen each muscle group. Mesomorphs, however, tend to be more prone to gaining weight as well as fat, which means this should be monitored with a customized diet. This body type needs a slightly higher calorie intake than the other body types. Mesomorphs react best when their diets are equally divided into thirds; 1/3rd of their diet should be vegetables and/or fruits, 1/3rd of their diet should be protein, and the last third should consist of grain, also known as healthy fats.

Endomorph Body Type Workout

With the appropriate customized workout, endomorphs have the capacity to gain muscle very quickly. However, due to their slow metabolism, they also have the capacity to gain weight very quickly. If they’re looking to change the form of their body, people who have an endomorph body type must maintain a healthy and balanced caloric intake as well as a customized workout to gain muscle and avoid excess weight gain. The most efficient way for an endomorph to work out would be to do it as often as possible, with one day of rest. Every day should focus on a different area of your body; Day 1 could be chest and back, day 2 could be triceps and biceps, day 3 cardio, day 4 shoulders, etc. The exercises the individual chooses should have a high level of intensity with the maximum level of muscle recruitment. The paleo diet, or one resembling it, tends to be the best fit for someone with an endomorph body. This diet tends to help lose fat while still maintaining energy levels.

It’s best to constantly check your body fat for progress. After 12 weeks, you should be able to notice an increase in your muscle volume and a decrease in the volume of your fat. If there is absolutely no change, you should consider what foods you’re putting into your body and if you should consider switching diets. You should also consider replacing certain workouts with others that may be more suitable for you. However, working out and exercising, in general, will always be good for your physical and mental health, whether you see instant changes or not.

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