Dieting can be a tricky task. With the overabundance of information out there, sometimes it’s hard to know what will and will not work for you. Trial and error is a slow process, and can lead to a lot of frustration. Here is one bit of advice that may make your physical fitness goals a little easier to attain. It’s the importance of knowing what your body type is. No, I don’t mean the generic “skinny,” “thin” or “fat” terms. This one is a little more scientific.
First off, we have the ectomorph. An ectomorph is the classic hardgainer. Their traits include:
• A small bone structure
• Small shoulders
• Very fast metabolism
• Hard for them to gain weight
For an ectomorph to build muscle and gain weight, they need to consume a lot of calories. I don’t mean bags of potato chips and French fries, although they can typically get away with eating these foods better than the other body types. An ectomorph needs to focus on consuming plenty of quality calories from nutrient dense foods in order to build muscle. Cardio training should be very limited, as this burns up precious calories that could be used for muscle building.
The next body type is the mesomorph. These are the people everyone loves to hate. Their traits include:
• An athletic build with well-defined muscles
• Gain muscle very easily
• Lose fat relatively easy
• Generally naturally strong individuals
The mesomorph has a relatively easy time adding muscle mass, especially as a beginner. While fat gain is usually not a problem for an active mesomorph, they will add body fat faster than an ectomorph. Generally a combination of cardio and weight training will produce fantastic results for the mesomorph.
The last category is the endomorph. An endomorph may appear to be built well, but they are often soft and gain fat easily. Their traits include:
• Gain muscle and fat easily
• Generally have a round physique
• Slow metabolism
• Find it difficult to lose body fat
Endomorphs usually have strong muscles, but they are often covered over by excess body fat. Cardio training is an absolute must to keep body fat from getting out of hand, as is avoiding unhealthy food choices.
So there is a little bit of background info on the three major body types. While a lot of individuals will fall directly into one of these classes, many more people exhibit the traits of two classes, such as an endo-mesomorph. Be honest with yourself when determining your body type. It can make a huge difference in attaining your health and fitness goals.