If you’re reading this article, it’s very likely you’ve heard about body types. You’ve probably heard the terms mesomorph, endomorph, and ectomorph. If you haven’t, I’ll give you a brief description of how the fitness community tends to define these terms:
Endomorph – slow metabolism, large frame, thick ribcage, wide hips, tends to gain weight easily and keep it on, has a hard time losing weight
Ectomorph – fast metabolism, lean, skinny frame, has a hard time gaining weight
Mesomorph – broader shoulders, naturally muscular, minimal body fat, builds muscle easily, “naturally gifted”
*Cough* Bullsh*t *cough*
Alright, here’s the deal.
These classifications are nothing more than broad generalizations used to classify the way people look. Some people are skinny, some are fat, some are in between. Beyond that, there’s no merit to these terms in regard to how an individual needs to go about gaining muscle or losing fat. Unfortunately, these terms have become a crutch for some people. Body types are a convenient excuse on which to pin the blame for why they aren’t losing weight or gaining muscle.
But my metabolism is slow…
If you’re overweight, you’re not cursed with a slow metabolism. If you want to classify yourself as an endomorph, ectomorph or mesomorph based on your appearance, go right ahead. However, the principle for weight loss and weight gain is the same for everyone. To lose weight you have to routinely burn more calories every day than you consume. But in order to gain weight, you must consistently eat more calories than you burn. Those classified as “mesomorphs” have simply found a balance between energy intake and energy output. They’ve either intentionally done this, or due to lifestyle habits, they’ve unwittingly found the right balance. They live an active lifestyle and do the things that are conducive to maintaining a good body weight and physique.
But I have bad genes…
Sure, genetics play a role in the way a person is shaped, i.e. limb length, symmetries, structure, frame size, etc. And it is true that some people can gain muscle a bit easier than others. But I cannot stress enough: the idea of how to gain or lose weight is the same for everyone: eat more calories than you burn and you’ll gain weight, eat fewer calories than you burn and you’ll lose weight. It’s a matter of physics. Although everyone is different in terms of personal eating habits, we are all bound to the same laws of physics that govern the universe.
If you take away anything from this article at all, it should be that last paragraph right there. Don’t use body type excuses anymore. They haven’t gotten you anywhere yet and they never will.