My name is Kaytlin, and I’m a mesomorph. You’re probably thinking, what the heck does she mean? I’m describing my body type. By classifying which body type you are, you can better understand your build and how to eat and exercise to get into your best shape ever.
From long and thin to short and thick, we each possess different traits that make up our body builds. Does this mean one build is better than another? Absolutely not. The only thing it means is one person may build muscle easily while another has to work harder to get the same results.
Why do some people see results quicker than others? The answer really comes down to your genetics. The body type you have will determine the rate at which you lose fat and gain muscle.
Each person has the ability to change their body type. Someone with a higher body fat percentage can decrease the amount of their body fat and replace it with muscle mass by catering their diet and workouts to their specific build. So, what does having a mesomorphic body type mean for my fitness goals? Let’s find out.
Muscle VS. Fat
When you’re working on changing your body type, you need to understand how your body uses the food you eat. Does your body hold on to any unused energy – low metabolism? Or does it exhaust it – high metabolism?
You’ve been working your butt off in the gym for months now, but you haven’t really seen the number on your scale budge. Did you know muscle and fat don’t take up the same amount of space in your body?
When you start to replace fat with muscle mass through a wholesome diet and regular exercise, you may not see any change on the scale even though your composition is subtly changing.
This is because fat takes up more space in your body than muscle, even though it weighs the same. As your inches decrease, your fat percentage is dropping while muscle is building, which is why your weight is staying consistent. It doesn’t mean what you’re doing isn’t working. It just means it’s going to take you more time to reach your goals.
If you’re the friend who gets a lot of flack for being able to eat anything you want without any change in your weight, this is your body type. Ectos usually have lean and long limbs and are “delicate” in stature.
You can usually spot this person based on their small joints, narrow frame, small stomachs, and low body fat. Because your metabolism is so high, you have trouble putting on muscle mass.
Famous ectos are the iconic actress Audrey Hepburn and Edward Norton.
- Perform exercises with a higher weight and lower repetitions; about 5-10 each set.
- Breaks in between sets should be a little bit longer since you’re using heavier weights.
- You will benefit most from performing compound exercises – like squats, push-ups, incline chest-press, etc.
- You should avoid steady state cardio, but should rather do High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) – like sprinting, or cycling.
- Eat high density foods rich in calories – like almonds, avocado, and peanut butter.
- Eat foods rich in complex carbs – like whole grains.
The meso is the person who can easily cut fat and put on muscle, but can just as easily lose it. This body type is muscular and lean.
They have a high metabolism and put on muscle with very little effort. They usually have wide shoulders and a small waist.
Farrah Fawcett and Mark Wahlberg both have meso body type.
- Sets of about 8-12 reps. The weight should be heavy enough that you can barely finish your set.
- 30-60 second breaks in between sets.
- You will benefit from either steady state or HIIT cardio sessions.
- Portion sizes should follow the fist size rule to maintain your results.
- Eat about 5-6 smaller meals composed of 40% complex carbs, 30% lean protein, and 30% essential fats.
The endo is the complete opposite of the ecto in that they have a higher body fat percentage. They are often pear-shaped, have a larger frame, and little muscle definition. Endos have a difficult time losing weight.
If you find it difficult to lose fat and put on muscle, you eat large meals or eat frequently throughout the day and still find you have an insatiable appetite, you have an endo body type.
The glamorous Marilyn Monroe and Jonah Hill are both examples of endo body types.
- Strength train using a lower weight with higher repetitions; about 15-18 per set.
- Breaks between sets should be small bouts of about 30-45 seconds. Keep your heart rate up!
- Cardio will count, so do as much as you can.
- You will benefit from alternating steady state and HIIT to burn fat and build lean muscle mass. Aim for 20-30 minutes of cardio a day on top of your strength training.
- Diet is key, so be diligent with what you put into your body. Moderate refined sugar.
- Watch your portions and go with the fist size rule.
- Eat 5-6 small meals a day.
- Drink approximately a gallon of water daily.
- Eat plenty of vegetables.
The Best Exercises For Your Body Type
As a fighter, I try to incorporate many different fitness philosophies to keep my body limber and strong. The main four fitness philosophies I follow are:
These are exercises like yoga and tai chi where the focus is using only your body-weight to meet your fitness goals. These types of exercises emphasize flexibility as just as important as building strength. Flexibility training is good for anyone to do and is great when combined with other forms of strength training to increase range of motion and prevent or even heal injuries.
Dynamic Strength Training
These are exercises like weightlifting and calisthenics. Weightlifting allows you to shape your own build, because you can control your weight and reps to determine your ideal body size. Calisthenics, like squats and push-ups lean the body without the use of weights. Ecto’s and meso’s bodies develop well using dynamic strength training
This would be running, cycling, swimming, etc. These exercises are best for endos to burn calories when combined with a form of strength training to build muscle.
Combines strength training with aerobic exercises. A great example of a circuit is doing a full-body strength training exercise – like a set of burpees, followed by an aerobic exercise – like jump roping. Circuit training is great for any body type.
Does Protein Really Matter?
You hear about having more protein in your diet, but you’re not exactly sure why. Protein contains the essential building blocks to changing your body. It composes your muscles, bones, hair, and nails. It is behind nutrient absorption, it carries oxygen throughout the body, it even helps protect against viruses.
In order to change your body type you have to first make changes in your diet. Losing fat and putting on muscle requires a diet composed of lots and lots of protein. Supplementation makes this so much easier and a lot cheaper.
The Shape Shifter
If I want to maintain my muscle mass and keep my fat percentage low for fight day weigh-in, I need to make sure I’m eating my body-weight in grams of protein every day. That’s a lot! I use IdealFit’s IdealLean protein powder to help me continue to smash my goals. It’s not only delicious, it has everything I need to keep me healthy and strong – with essential vitamins like calcium, vitamin D, and folic acid.
With the right tools, you have the ability to be who you want to be. No matter your body type, with enough perseverance, you can defy any limitation! Rise to the occasion and become your best self. You’re worth it.