Whether you’re a gym junkie or a couch potato, whether you love it or hate it, exercise is a hot topic. In the United States alone, the fitness industry is worth tens of billions of dollars, so it’s no secret that people are willing to spend their hard-earned money to get the most out of their exercise.
But it doesn’t have to be expensive. Ensuring that you’re maximising your time spent working out comes down to knowing how your body works and how to get it to work for you.
Here are some ways to improve and enhance your exercise specific to your body shape:
– You must be patient and train hard if you want to bulk up because you don’t build muscle as easily as others.
– Rather than high frequency weight training that can result in overtraining and physical burnout, include enough rest for proper recovery.
– Focus on big muscle groups and limit cardio that naturally melts fat.
– You have less muscle endurance than someone who is an endomorph and you aren’t designed for heavy weightlifting. If you want to bulk, progressively increase your tolerance to weight training (don’t do heavy weights right away) and rather than long sessions that can lead to reduced muscle mass and strength due to physical fatigue, opt for shorter sessions that focus on good form and better promote muscular hypertrophy.
– You are great at marathon races, long distance bike riding, mountain climbing and other very long and tiring types of exercises. This type of training doesn’t necessarily bulk muscles and is closer to your natural talent.
– Doing over the head lifts can cause long-term strain on the spine so it’s best to avoid these. Chin ups, curls, bench presses, pull downs are much better alternatives.
– Because you have a harder time gaining mass, you need a lot of calories to bulk so don’t skip meals and enjoy your food, especially carbs (you have a higher carb tolerance) to prevent muscle catabolism!
– This is super easy for you since you’re naturally lean!
– If you want to bulk, you’ll have to stress your muscles. The more you stress them (push to exhaustion) the more they will strengthen and grow in response to that stress.
– Avoid your body’s natural adaptive abilities and change your exercises frequently. Not only does the mind get bored but the body does too and it adapts to doing the same workout over and over, so change it up. This will help you regularly and steadily progress and avoid plateaus. It will also challenge and exert the muscles and body movements in different ways, which can increase progress and physical ability
– Adding speed and intensity are great ways of pushing through and getting better results.
– Focus on high intensity interval training that will give you loads of cardio but also activate and train the muscles for a more toned look.
– Avoid heavy weights in areas where you see natural muscle bulk because your muscles can grow easily. For instance, you may want to avoid leg extensions or use low weight, high rep leg extensions because your quads can bulk in a blink!
– Focus on keeping the BFI low because although you can gain muscle easily, you can gain fat easily too. Good training and healthy eating can slim you down without too much trouble so the lean physique isn’t too hard to obtain with a bit of discipline. Poor diet + weight training = bulk for you!
– Naturally build for heavy lifting and resistance training, with a slow and steady type of endurance you are less prone to overtraining than other body shapes.
– To achieve a good physique, fat loss is important. So if you’re looking at reducing fat to make your muscles appear more toned, there’s one great strategy that works very well: 20 mins of cardio at the end of a resistance training session. Doing an intense cardio session at the end of a resistance training session helps melt that extra layer of fat away. But never skip the resistance training. Not only does training your muscles burn more calories than cardio in the long run, but your body naturally craves this because it’s how you’re designed. Alternatively, you can do cardio in between weight training sessions, just opt for low impact cardio until your legs and joints are strong enough to support your weight, or do one session of cardio and a separate session of weight training in a day if you want 2 daily sessions.
– Your body doesn’t naturally tell you to move all the time so you have to push it and make physical exercise a part of your daily routine and a 30 minute walk doesn’t cut it. Include plenty of moderate to high intensity cardio (min 30 minutes a day) and combine this with a low carb diet (you are more insulin resistant than other body shapes).
– Building muscle mass can increase the base metabolic rate, allowing the body to burn more calories naturally, but the slimmer look comes from shedding fat and decreasing the body’s desire of storing or holding onto fat which is done when you reach 20,000 steps or 1.5 hrs of physical movement or a min of 60 minutes total of higher intensity sweaty cardio throughout the day. You can break it up into sessions – it doesn’t have to be all at once.
– Don’t think about spot reduction (wanting to lose fat on your belly or thighs). You can’t without losing weight all over. So in addition to thinking about overall fat loss, try to consider a workout that helps build lean muscle in an area to help reduce the appearance of fat and give a leaner look.
Regardless of your biotype, preferred form of exercise or how often you get your active wear on, there are some basics we should all be aware of when working out:
- Music can be inspirational and get your body moving so use it to your advantage.
- Everyone must stay well hydrated. That’s not a biotype thing, it’s a human thing.
- Carbs after workouts help bulk up.
- Protein after workouts help rebuild muscles.
- Fats after workouts help physical and mental stress coping.
- Don’t overdo it. Listen to your body at all times to avoid injury.
- Educate yourself. Keep the above biotype specific tips in mind and know the best approaches for you as individual.