T Nation

Should an Ectomorph Train Differently?

Some people say that volume and frequency of workouts etc should be reduced for the ectomorph bodytype. Is there any truth in this or is it just simply a case of eating more to fuel the abnormally high metabolism?

I especially would like to hear from ectomorphic guys who have ‘in the trenchs’ experience with this or trainers who have worked with clients who have this bodytype.

Eating more and heavy weights.

Seriously, just eat and lift heavy shit repeatedly. Yes, we have high metabolisms but with time they slow down.

ectomorph specific training? nah i dont think so. eat and lift.

Get stronger than everyone at your gym, eat more than 2 normal people and let us know if that doesn’t work.

Cause we’ll call you a liar or a quitter.

1st read through the links provided here http://tnation.tmuscle.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding/the_best_of_tnation Especially Professor X’s and Cephalic_Carnage’s threads

Second. Everyone is built differently and will respond differently to training. Who knows maybe 5 years from now you’ll put on a shit load of muscle and will look more like a mesomorph. I wouldn’t worry about being an ectomorph(hate the word and ).

Worry about learning and finding exercises that work for YOU and that you feel actually hitting the targeted muscle and to which you can progressively advance on via adding more weights or reps. Eat enough to grow. Use the mirror. Gaining lots of fat and not any muscle? Your nutrition and/or training/intensity in the gym sucks. Getting stronger but not bigger? Eat more.

Only thing when starting and you’re skinny (lets throw the word “ectomorph” out of your vocab). Is you’re probably not used to eating copious amounts of food (as I am not also). No eating one big meal a day doesn’t count. Eating a good amount spread out is what you want.

Do you know how much a person with your frame with 50+ lbs of muscle mass needs eat to maintain his size? How about what kind of poundage’s you think he’s pushing on all his best exercises with relatively good form?

This is what you need to think about and what you should progress to over time.

Ectomorph is just another name for skinny.

It depends on WHY you are an ectomorph. And remember you may be an ectomorph now, but you dont have to always be an ectomorph.

There are some articles on this I think. I think a search for hardgainer will bring it up.

Some things to think about, are:

  • how much you are TRULY eating.
  • Excess activity, like playing basketball or doing cross country running.
  • Sleeping enough
  • How often you push to or past failure

Im sure there are more. For me, it was always a combination of these. But if you start focusing on getting stronger and eating a TON, you’ll gain. There is no way around it.

I also used to do too many sets and push past failure too often. I was focusing on quality not quantity. When I started to cut down the volume and started ramping up the weight on my sets things started to change.

And the biggest thing is you have to not fear getting fat. If you want to keep “hot abz” you are never going to gain to your potential.

in arnold’s encyclopedia of bodybuilding he suggests ectomorphs should put emphasis on

  1. power moves, 6-8 rep range after warm up sets
  2. intensity 14-16 total sets instead of 16-20 total sets
  3. nutrition, lots of calories- mass gain + milk, shakes in addition to foods
  4. less cardio than the other body types to conserve energy, basically not hours and hours of cardio

thats pretty much paraphrased out of the book, i just cut down points (they’re actually numbered 1-4 in the book). i’ve had trouble putting on mass but doing a 10-12 rep set, then 8-10, set of 6, then a set shooting for 4 has really helped. i also upped the shakes from a 1 scoop of whey to 3 scoops of mass gainer +milk. i’ve gained good strength with it. i also think changing from bodypart 1x/week to a 3 day, bodypart 2x/week split has helped.

[quote]Westclock wrote:
Eating more and heavy weights.

[/quote]

Exactly…so basically to answer the OPs original question. No.

i’m an ectomorph myself and low reps with complex movements definitely helped a lot.

Also, the food and training may be very important, but from my experience, lifestyle changes are the way to go. I could force myself to eat all day long until i wanted to vomit but couldn’t gain any muscle, but when i started to live more actively, do sports instead of sitting at the computer, tried to be as much in fresh air and control my stress levels, i’ve gained muscle at a pace i wouldn’t believe i could gain on quite an average diet.

Good training regimes and healthy diets are a good addition to success but for many ectomorphs nervous system is the key whether they gain muscle or not. It might be not your case, but you may find something useful from this

I’m an ectomorph too.

Hell, we are ALL ectomorphs here!!!

brb eating 10,000 cals

[quote]Professor X wrote:
I’m an ectomorph too.

Hell, we are ALL ectomorphs here!!![/quote]

place needs renaming E-Nation.

I remember reading something on another site, I think it was DC stuff.

But basically it was a technique to increase hunger. You wake up in the morning, have a protein shake, and then do some LIGHT activity. Something like a walk or a hike for 20-30 minutes. Supposedly this increases hunger thrughout the day, and possibly increases nutrient partitioning.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
I’m an ectomorph too.

Hell, we are ALL ectomorphs here!!![/quote]

So you really are a skinny white guy with glasses!

i’m a natural endomorph, think John Goodman, Roseanne, Jack Black all rolled into one. i’ve have 13inch wrists for Christ sake!!!

what worked getting me from 380lbs down to 215lbs was supersets, high intensity, and a rep range of 47-82 reps per set, i do a minimum of 30 exercises per body part.

if your an ectomorph i recommend one set per body part, one exercise per body part, and a rep range of 1-2 reps, otherwise you will remain catabolic all the time.

eat dark meat chicken it’s loaded with aminos, cream soup 2% milk, and get a minimum of 12hr sleep per day!

work a split that is growth oriented, 2 days on at most w/ a minimum of 5-11 days rest in between. you should be in and out of the gym in 15min-17min, eat the chicken and drink the cream as you are leaving the gym.

if the scale ain’t moving go on a fast for a few days at a time, your metabolism will slow down then blast it w/ the cream, salt and sugars too they help w/ the mobility of the dark meat’s creatine!

good luck dingle berry, remember water is for pussies!

[quote]cyruseven75 wrote:
what worked getting me from 380lbs down to 215lbs …
[/quote]

Really? Wow, Great job!

/hijack (sorry!)

[quote]ect0m0rph wrote:
Some people say that volume and frequency of workouts etc should be reduced for the ectomorph bodytype. Is there any truth in this or is it just simply a case of eating more to fuel the abnormally high metabolism?

I especially would like to hear from ectomorphic guys who have ‘in the trenchs’ experience with this or trainers who have worked with clients who have this bodytype.[/quote]

You could have a high metabolism or you could just not be eating that much at all. I started out at like 150 lbs. I thought I was an ‘ectomorph’ turns out I just wasn’t eating enough. I just ate my way to my current weight right now (182) and was once 195 (still small though :frowning: ). With just eating, training and resting a lot, you can just get bigger. No need for any specific training in my opinion.

[quote]cyruseven75 wrote:
i’m a natural endomorph, think John Goodman, Roseanne, Jack Black all rolled into one. i’ve have 13inch wrists for Christ sake!!!

what worked getting me from 380lbs down to 215lbs was supersets, high intensity, and a rep range of 47-82 reps per set, i do a minimum of 30 exercises per body part.

if your an ectomorph i recommend one set per body part, one exercise per body part, and a rep range of 1-2 reps, otherwise you will remain catabolic all the time.

eat dark meat chicken it’s loaded with aminos, cream soup 2% milk, and get a minimum of 12hr sleep per day!

work a split that is growth oriented, 2 days on at most w/ a minimum of 5-11 days rest in between. you should be in and out of the gym in 15min-17min, eat the chicken and drink the cream as you are leaving the gym.

if the scale ain’t moving go on a fast for a few days at a time, your metabolism will slow down then blast it w/ the cream, salt and sugars too they help w/ the mobility of the dark meat’s creatine!

good luck dingle berry, remember water is for pussies!
[/quote]

You need some practice at sarcasm.