LIKE THIS POST? Get these delivered right to your inbox

The Perfect Workout Isn’t One-Size-Fits-All

Every guy knows that exercise is important to keep our bodies working. Not everyone exercises for the same reasons, or in the same ways, however. Some men are looking to lose weight. Others are looking to put on muscle. Still others push to achieve peak physical performance and have the most chiseled body possible. These different goals all require different types of exercise, of course, but an equally important factor in determining how to build a workout routine is body type. Your body type isn’t just your weight or muscle mass, it has to do with your metabolism and how your process and store fat. There are three basic types of male bodies: ectomorphs, endomorphs, and mesomorphs. We’ll look at effective exercises for each.

Workout Basics

For starters, let’s establish a few workout roadmaps. Cardio exercises like running and biking are helpful to burn fat, lose weight, and strengthen your heart and lungs. Weight Lifting smaller weights with lots of reps will help you tone up and build lean muscle. Lifting heavy weights with a low number of reps generally helps build large muscles. Of course, there are lots of forms of exercise that combine these elements, from yoga to cross training, and swimming. In addition, supplements like fat burners for men can be very helpful to kickstart your exercise routine.

Workouts for Ectomorphs (Skinny Guys)

The first type of body we’ll discuss is the ectomorphic. Ectomorphs tend to be skinny with low muscle mass, meaning they process fat extremely efficiently. So efficiently, in fact that it’s hard for them to build muscle, which can be frustrating. While it may seem counter-intuitive, ectomorphs need to lift heavy weights in small doses, only three to four times a week. Keep in mind that “heavy” is a relative term; if you’re a skinny guy who’s new to working out, bench-pressing 80 pounds may be “heavy” for you. That’s totally okay. As you start to bulk up, you can increase weight. Keep cardio light, maybe just a few minutes on a treadmill or elliptical to get the blood flowing, and not at high speeds. Your body is already burning enough fat as it is!

Workouts for Endomorphs (Bigger Guys)

Let’s go in the opposite direction now and talk about the Endomorphic body type. Endomorphs can be either bulky (think defensive ends or heavyweight boxers), or…for lack of a better term, fat. Wherever you fall on the endomorphic spectrum, the same kinds of exercises will help to keep you toned or lose weight, whichever your goal may be. Cardio is key, with interval training and longer runs being important for conditioning. Don’t neglect weights, however. High-rep, low-weight lifts will also help burn fat. For the endomorph, the kitchen really makes a difference. Lean proteins are your friend, and a low-carb diet is key to weight-loss success.

Workouts for Mesomorphs (Lean, Athletic Guys)

Men with mesomorphic body types are lucky. That’s not to say mesomorphs haven’t worked hard to achieve their lean, muscular look. The luck involved is simply the fact that your body processes fat and distributes muscle in a very appealing way that features defined, cut muscles. Many people consider a mesomorphic frame “ideal,” but it requires exercise to maintain it, especially as you exit your twenties. Full-body exercises like squats and deadlifts are great for this body type. The key for mesomorphs is to vary up their routines to avoid plateauing. A balanced diet is best for them, with moderate protein intake (as opposed to aggressive protein consumption.)

Knowing what body type you have, and what type of exercise it will respond to, should help you build your workout routine and achieve your goals!