Understand your body type for optimum fitness

Mon. March 9, 2009 12:00 AM
by Jim Gregory

We all know them, the friends we go out to eat with that eat a pound of bacon, with a plate full of pancakes and down a soda without even batting an eye. What's most upsetting is that they don't even gain a pound! Why is this? The way your body looks and how your metabolism works is the result of your genetics and environmental factors that create your Body Type or technically called your Somatotype. There are three pre-dominant body types: Endomorphs, Ectomorphs & Mesomorphs. Though your body type may be genetically pre-disposed, it doesn't mean you can't work with what you've been given to get the booty, six-pack and pecks to catch the glances of all the guys in the club, boost your confidence or make the intimate moments with you lover quite sensual. By understanding our body types we can better understand what our personal diet should be and what our workout routine should take form of. The great equalizer of all bodies is the training effect, and no matter what your rainbow booty is, you'll get to
where you want to be with persistency and consistency.

Body types are genetically predisposed, but understanding them gives us a base of how we can work with what we've got to get what we want. If you are like me, even the look at a bowl of pretzels or potato chips makes me gain weight. People who gain weight easily are called Endomorphs. Your friend who eats a stick of butter, a tub of ice cream, doesn't have a gym membership and hardly gains a pound is called an Ectomorph. While your other friend who can barely contain his muscles from his size large T-shirt and hardly ever goes to the gym is called a Mesomporh. All three of these body types may be genetically pre-disposed, but they are not limiting. The system of identifying body types is merely an academic tool to help us understand ourselves and guide us in building a strategy towards achieving the body results we want.

If you are a true Ectomorph then you are most often loathed by others for your ability to eat whatever you want without even the thought of gaining a pound. While others may be envious of this, you know that your true challenge is gaining body mass. Quite intuitively an Ectomorph's diet must contain the most amount of calories to give your body the extra energy to build the muscles you while working with a high metabolic rate. Mesomorphs are next in line with muscles like hungry hungry hippos and finally Endomorphs require the least amount of calories of all three. Sometimes even the thought of ice cream makes an Endomorph feel heavier. This is nonsense of coarse, a well developed fitness plan will include a workout routine and diet fit for each individual depending on what each person's unique body type is.

Don't be discouraged if you aren't a Mesomorph. The training effect is the great equalizer. A good diet, resistance training and a healthy mindset can get you to exactly where you want to be. To keep it simple, I recommend a prescription of moving more unless, of course, you have some medical ailment. There is no magic pill for weight loss. So the first step is aerobicizing those hips.

For the person who can't keep the weight off, do more cardio work in the beginning of your workout routine. Eat complex carbohydrates and lean proteins. Gradually move your focus from cardio to resistance training. The cardio will get your blood cell count up to levels your muscles need so that enough oxygen can be delivered during resistance training. Making your workouts in the future enjoyable and sustainable for long periods of time without the feeling of being overworked.

If you are a person who has a hard time gaining weight, eat an abundance of complex carbs, healthy fats (monoglycerides or Oilve oils, fish oils, etc.) and lots of protein. Start with resistance training but don't forget your cardio. Do a warm up jog in the beginning of your workout to get your blood circulating and oxygen flowing. Break into the track machines and once you feel comfortable there start free weight training. Track machines will strengthen your core muscles without the risk of loosing your balance. Free weight resistance training should be built into any workout routine because free weights make for a well-rounded workout routine, one that hits your core muscles and then some. This will make you look proportionate rather than just bulky in some places.

Our bodies are amazing little machines. You get out of them what you put into them. A good diet and workout routine can do wonders for most anyone. To some, a gym membership is considered an alternative to health insurance as a body that is cared for is less likely to get sick or break down quite as often. But for many of the readers on our gym membership is a way for us to get the washboard abs and a booty firm and plump enough to set a cup of tea on. For whatever the reason is, go into the gym educated to get the most out of your time. It's important as Gymbunnies to understand the body we have in order for us to not to get discouraged on our way towards achieving perfection.

With Consistency and Persistency,