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The best way to lose or manage your weight? It's all due to your body shape!

When clients initially come to me for weight loss the first thing we look at is your body shape. I would say at least 95% have never even heard of an Ectomorph or Mesomorph and simply thought weight loss was due to exercising and lifting weights or running.  Yes exercise is one of the key factors but if you do not understand your body shape and how your body responds to food and exercise then you can be travelling down the completely wrong path for weight management.

 

So lets look at the body shape which can be broken down into three main categories:

 

 

Which category would you fit in? Ectomorph? Mesomorph or Endomorph?

Lets look at the different traits of each:

Ectomorphs:

These are people who seem to eat whatever they want and never seem to gain any weight. Lets be honest we all know someone like that and we can feel a little envious. That said in many circumstances these people would in fact like to put on weight rather than loose weight. They are usually thin and lean with a smaller bone structure. Shoulders tend to be narrower than their hips. I always tell my clients to think of endurance athletes as a typical model. Celebrities include Kiera Knightly, Mo Farah, Taylor Swift, Kate Middleton, Stephen Merchant. As mentioned previously typically your goal is to gain weight.

Mesomorphs:

You have a medium bone structure and an athletic body. You are considered to have what people call the 'good gene' because you have an efficient metabolism which means it's easier for you to gain muscle or lose fat. You still need to keep an active lifestyle but in turn when following the rules you find it fairly easy to maintain your weight. That said with ageing you may find this a little harder as your metabolism slows and therefore need to exercise more and keep a closer eye on your diet. So yes you can gain weight but once you get back into your rhythm and start exercising and eating properly the excess weight comes off fairly easily. Your goal is to lean up. Celebrities include Jake Glyenhall, Halle Berry, Jennifer Lawrence, Mark Walhberg.

Endomorphs:

You have a soft, rounder body with a stockier bone structure with a larger mid section and hips. You find that you can easily put weight on and gain fat when not eating properly. In some cases you can feel it after eating just one chocolate bar. Your metabolism is naturally slower and you struggle to loose weight and therefore you need to pay strict attention to the food you eat. Your goal is to loose weight. Celebrities include Elton John, Oprah Winfrey, Peter Kay.

If you feel you don't exactly fit into these three categories you can sometimes be a mixture of two:

Ecto-Mesomorph: This body is lean and muscular.

Meso-Endomorph: You are strong but your muscles aren't well defined. A slightly round muscle physique.

Ecto-Endomorth: What I call the 'skinny fat' who is naturally thin but has gained weight through a poor diet. Quite often you see alcohol drinkers with this physique.

So now you have decided what body type you are here comes the exciting bit.....you can now see what is the most effective and efficient diet and training methods for you to achieve your goals. Amazing!!

First lets break down each diet for each body type:

Ectomorph Diet:

 

 

 

 

 

So when it comes to your diet you must eat a mass grain-focused diet because your body tends to burn off energy faster than the other body types. Therefore because of your faster metabolism you burn off more calories so you will need your daily calorie intake to be higher. You should aim to consume 700-1000 calories more than you need to maintain your current body.

Stay away from low carb diets they are not for you! Instead aim for a higher carb, moderate protein and low fat diet. Go for 50% Carbs, 30% Protein and 20% Fat.

Here are some examples of what your portions should be like:

Ectomorph Men Meal:

  • 3 portions of carbs

  • 2 portions of protein

  • 2 fist size portions of vegetables

  • 1 thumb of fat dense food

 

Ectomorph Women Meal:

  • 2 portion of carbs

  • 1 portion of protein

  • 1-2 fists of vegetables

  • 1/2 thumb of dense fat foods

 

So since your metabolism rate is very high, you need to keep fuelling your engine so try to keep eating every 2-4 hours. If you are extremely thin I would recommend incorporating a high calorie protein shake into your diet.

Mesomorph Diet:

 

 

 

Typically your goal is to lean up. You want to maintain your bodyweight, but loose fat and add muscle tone. Mesomorphs fall somewhere in the middle and in fact I would call my self a mesomorph. Sometimes I can let my diet slip and gain a few extra pounds although when trimming would like to keep my muscle mass. The macros for a Mesomorph should be split pretty evenly so its easy to remember but as a rule of thumb 35% Carbs, 35% Protein and 30% Fat.

Here is an example of your food portion:

Mesomorph Men Meal

  • 1.5 portion of carbs

  • 2 portions of protein

  • 2-3 fists of vegetables

  • 2 thumbs of dense fat foods

 

Mesomorph Women Meal

  • 1 portion of carbs

  • 1 portion of protein

  • 1-2 fists of vegetables

  • 1 thumb of fat dense food

 

Your food intake can also be adjusted according to your training days. For example on strength and conditioning days reduce your carbs and increase your protein. Whereas on HIIT days (boxing for example with myself) you would increase your carb intake post workout to fuel your body.

As for your calorie intake you tend to want to maintain and keep your current body weight but if you are looking to trim then consume slightly less so you are in a deficit.

Endomorphs Diet:

 

 

 

When you are an Endomorph I have to say diet is of the upmost importance. Unfortunately with the other two body types you have a little bit of wiggle room but for endomorphs you need to be strict. Like with all training you 'Can Not Out Train A Bad Diet' and never more so with Endomorphs you are very sensitive to poor food choices.

Endomorphs tend to be more insulin resistant and have a lower carb tolerance and therefore you should consider a lower carb intake. Your body responds much better to a higher protein diet and a higher fat intake (yes I said fat...good fats mind you) and a lower carb intake. So as a general rule of thumb its recommended a diet of 20% Carbs, 45% Protein and 35% Fat . So you tend to find Endomorphs do really well on a Keto diet.

Due to the fact that your body doesn't tolerate carbs very well you should steer clear of high carb starchy foods outside of the workout window (1hr after training) and only consume starchy foods (if you need to) such as rice, whole grain breads, potatoes straight after training, otherwise steer clear! So outside the workout window your diet should mainly consist of protein, healthy fats and vegetables.

Here is an example of your meal:

Endomorph Men Meal:

  • 2 portions of protein

  • 2-3 fists of vegetables

  • 2-3 fists of fat dense foods

  • 1 Portion of carbs

 

Endomorph Women Meal:

  • 1 portion of protein

  • 2 fists of vegetables

  • 1-2 thumbs of fat dense foods

  • 0.5 - 1 portion of carbs

 

So now in order for you to loose weight your total daily calorie intake should be 500-700 calories less than your Total Daily Calorie Expenditure which can easily be calculated here:

 

TDEE Calculator: Learn Your Total Daily Energy Expenditure

Please ensure you still intake enough calories to maintain a healthy lifestyle!

IMPORTANT - Do not under eat....I repeat do not under eat! because this will damage your workout performance and in turn your metabolism and therefore your weight loss.

Now lets look at the best forms of training for each body shape!

Ectomorphs Training:

Since your goal is to gain weight and lean muscle mass you want to focus on resistance training and limit the cardio and endurance type training. You should be focused on strength and hypertrophy training which  builds muscle.

In order to gain strength and size you want to be lifting heavy. The weights should be heavy enough that you can only lift 6-10 reps. Because you are lifting heavier weights you will need a longer rest in between sets of around 1-2 minutes. Aim for 4 sets training 3-4 times a week or every other day. Upper body lower body split workout days is great for you.

Follow a simple routine with heavy compound movements per muscle group. Squats, Deadlift, Bench Press, Lunges, Bent Over Rows etc. Compound movements are basically exercises that work several muscle groups at once and because these movements recruit a lot of large muscle fibers its the best way to build muscle mass quickly and increase overall strength.

 

Combine this training with a few short cardio sessions per week 10-20 mins or even do this as a warm up before each strength session to maintain your heat and cardiovascular system.

 

Mesomorphs Training:

Well you should count yourself one of the luck ones! You tend to be naturally strong and respond well to exercise, making it easier for you to gain mass, loose weight and stay lean.

For this reason you want to aim for wide performance spectrum focusing on strength and endurance. For example I love weight training, running, boxing, cycling and have a very varied training schedule and really enjoy pushing myself in each of these categories. You can dedicate a block of exercises to strength training a block to hypertrophy and a block to endurance training.

The aim of Mesomorphs is to mix up your training because you can lose muscle mass if for example you are too focus on endurance training and you main gain fat if you only perform heavy weight training for example.

So for example you could incorporate moderate to heavy strength training 3-4 times a week but combine this with HIIT and cardio work outs 2-3 times weekly.

Endomorphs Training:

Often Endomorphs feel that they are destined to be overweight and there is little they can do but please try not feel this way. It most definitely isn't the case as you can alter your body with exercise and a change in lifestyle. As your metabolic rate tends to be slower you need to eat the right food to assist you and fire up your metabolism. If you live a sedentary lifestyle, often working at your desk for long periods of time try to incorporate exercising as part of your daily routine. If you are very busy and have little time during the day I often find clients enjoy training very early in the morning for example. Training at the end of the day works for some but for others they can be too tired. It all depends on your work and lifestyle.

When it comes to exercise resistance training is still key but adding more endurance training will help increase your metabolic rate and shed fat. A higher muscle mass will increase your BMR, hence making your body more efficient in burning fat.

Aim for 3-4 days of strength training but with a shorter rest. This is key as you want to complete more work in less time and keep your heart rate elevated throughout the majority of the session. The key rep range is between 8-15 reps (I tend to go for 12 as a general rule) and only rest for about 30 seconds between each exercise. You can combine this with compound movements as this helps you burn more calories per session. The majority of my Endomorph clients tend to enjoy circuit training.

On the other 2-3 days go for endurance training. A slightly lower intensity but longer walk or jog, cycling or swimming and on the other day a HIIT session such as boxing pad work.

I hope this is useful to you all!

Please do not hesitate to email me anytime with your questions:

james@kensingtontrainingclub.com

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