Ben Lucas, Director of Flow Athletic and Flow Athletic TV shares with us his tips on training for your body type.
There are so different many ways to work out now it can be hard to choose the right type of workout to give you the results that you want to achieve. If you are someone who does have a goal in mind, but doesn’t know how to realise it, you may want to look at how to train for your body type.
Somototypes where introduced back in the 1940s by William H.Sheldon Phd, MD. The three body type categories are:
Ectomorph– Long and lean with little body fat and little muscle
Mesomorph– athletic, solid, strong, not overweight and not underweight
Endomorph– Lots of muscle, lots of body fat, gains weight easily
However, not everyone falls exactly into these body categories, for example, someone with a pear shape is likely to be an echo-endomorph who is essentially slim but with more weight around their mid section or lower body.
For all of these body types, strength training is a great option. For an ectomorph who struggles to put on weight it can help them build definition in their muscles, while for an endomorph who is curvier, it can help speed up their metabolism to burn fat.
So what is the best way to train for your body type? Let’s explore the three types.
An ectomorph is the one group that can stay lean without doing much aerobic exercise. Instead they would benefit from more strength training, ideally compound movements. Having less body fat and muscle means that they will need to be mindful to not get overuse injuries from doing the same motion again and again. Compound movements work well for them as many joints and muscles work at the same time to keep things balanced while also making them stronger.
This group also needs to be wary of doing too much intensity cardio as it can lead to hiked cortisol levels which can throw their hormones off balance. HIIT training would suit this body type better as it allows for lower intensity periods or rest.
If you have a Mesomorph body shape that you are happy with, low to moderate cardio may work best for you if you want to maintain your weight. A fast paced walk at 65-75% of your heart rate is suitable, as is strength training and a bit of HIIT, but not too much intense cardio. If you want to lose some weight you can do a bit more cardio, but don’t overdo it as if your cortisol gets too high and stays high, you are likely to store body fat.
For an Endomorph, a hybrid of low to moderate intensity cardio is a great way to hit those stubborn fat stores, then you would add in some strength training to take it up a notch. You want to get started on cardio first to burn fat, once your body starts losing some of it, adding strength training can really help speed up your metabolism and keep you feeling great and energised.
Keep in mind that many people are a hybrid of these body types so you should train according to the types that you feel are most you. Many people get their body type incorrect, there are resources online that you can use for free to help you determine which body type you fall into.