T Nation

Training for Different Body Types

I often read on this site about people accusing the skinny guy in the gym is still skinny because he doesn’t lift heavy. I think we all know this is only half of the story (if that).

There are lots of different body types and the DNA you’re born with dictates what you are.

Now we are all not born with high muscle tone. Some people are actually born with very low muscle tone and have to work out substantially harder to just put any sustainable muscle mass on their frame (i.e. hard gainers). And some people have joint issues, back issues, injuries, etc…

So my question is… can TNATION benefit from sections for

a. Buff Guys (easy gainers, thick people, strongmen, powerlifters etc…)
b. Scrawny Guys (lower muscle tone, injury prone, joint issues, etc…)
c. Fat Guys (slow metabolism, heavy, low endurance, etc…)

Of course there are others and of course there are mixed body types. But anyways, any thoughts are welcome. I just felt like posting this because it gets frustrating hearing people saying that people’s bodies are a result of lack of this or lack of that. We are not all going to look like the Governator in his prime no matter how hard we train.

I don’t like the whole body type thing.

I could have been considered and endomorph back a few years ago, but that is because I ate like shit and gave no consideration to nutrition and followed, an ‘eat everything in site’ bulk approach.

Now I easily look muscular, have no trouble adding strength and muscle to my body and stay lean, despite still eating crap on occasion. Even when I was eating crap daily, I was a little soft, but still lean enough to see my abs and look as though I lift.

Point is, yes there are people with very slow metabolisms and high estrogen levels that do fit an endomorph body type, ‘I’m going to be fat no matter what or unless I take really strict measure to change.’

There will also be those people that have speedy metabolisms because of an overactive thyroid and they under eat and will have a lot of trouble gaining weight.

But I think everyone leans more towards the middle after a few years of sound training and nutrition and there body changes. Hormonal changes play a huge roll when getting in shape and when your hormones are functioning correctly because you are taking better care of yourself, you will have a tendency to put on size and remain lean.

I think outside factors like misguided individuals that disregard diet are the way they are because they’ve inflicted that upon themselves.

There are many people who were fat, or overly skinny, that turned themselves into mesomorphs and if you didn’t see their before pictures you’d think they were born that way.

[quote]iplayatari wrote:
I often read on this site about people accusing the skinny guy in the gym is still skinny because he doesn’t lift heavy.

So my question is… can TNATION benefit from sections for

a. Buff Guys (easy gainers, thick people, strongmen, powerlifters etc…)
b. Scrawny Guys (lower muscle tone, injury prone, joint issues, etc…)
c. Fat Guys (slow metabolism, heavy, low endurance, etc…)

[/quote]

No. The skinny guy just doesn’t do heavy work where it counts…the kitchen. Not sure why seperate sections would be needed. I could see the b & c sections being a dumping ground for one excuse after another.

[quote]austin_bicep wrote:
I don’t like the whole body type thing.

I could have been considered and endomorph back a few years ago, but that is because I ate like shit and gave no consideration to nutrition and followed, an ‘eat everything in site’ bulk approach.

Now I easily look muscular, have no trouble adding strength and muscle to my body and stay lean, despite still eating crap on occasion. Even when I was eating crap daily, I was a little soft, but still lean enough to see my abs and look as though I lift.

Point is, yes there are people with very slow metabolisms and high estrogen levels that do fit an endomorph body type, ‘I’m going to be fat no matter what or unless I take really strict measure to change.’

There will also be those people that have speedy metabolisms because of an overactive thyroid and they under eat and will have a lot of trouble gaining weight.

But I think everyone leans more towards the middle after a few years of sound training and nutrition and there body changes. Hormonal changes play a huge roll when getting in shape and when your hormones are functioning correctly because you are taking better care of yourself, you will have a tendency to put on size and remain lean.

I think outside factors like misguided individuals that disregard diet are the way they are because they’ve inflicted that upon themselves.

There are many people who were fat, or overly skinny, that turned themselves into mesomorphs and if you didn’t see their before pictures you’d think they were born that way.

[/quote]

Brilliant post Austin.

I agree with this on the most part. I was always the perfect ectomorph, the first word to come to mind when seeing old photos of myself is lanky (I HATED being called that!)

I believe I have transformed myself into more of a meso/ecto type but I believe I will always look somewhat ectomorphic no matter how much lean mass I can acquire due to limb length and torso/leg length ratio etc. a lack of quad sweep doesn’t help :slight_smile:

But yeah, for the most part the hand you’re dealt is by no means the one you’re stuck with.

Still jealous of all out mesomorphs though

If they had a section for scrawny guys, who would post there? How would a scrawny guy benefit from listening to another scrawny guy’s advice?

The scrawny and fat guys would both go to the buff guy section and ask, “what do I need to do to look like you?”

OP, I do understand your frustration, but the idea wouldn’t fly.

It’s just like any other sport. If you want to get better, you have to “play up”.

[quote]austin_bicep wrote:
I don’t like the whole body type thing.

I could have been considered and endomorph back a few years ago, but that is because I ate like shit and gave no consideration to nutrition and followed, an ‘eat everything in site’ bulk approach.

Now I easily look muscular, have no trouble adding strength and muscle to my body and stay lean, despite still eating crap on occasion. Even when I was eating crap daily, I was a little soft, but still lean enough to see my abs and look as though I lift.

Point is, yes there are people with very slow metabolisms and high estrogen levels that do fit an endomorph body type, ‘I’m going to be fat no matter what or unless I take really strict measure to change.’

There will also be those people that have speedy metabolisms because of an overactive thyroid and they under eat and will have a lot of trouble gaining weight.

But I think everyone leans more towards the middle after a few years of sound training and nutrition and there body changes. Hormonal changes play a huge roll when getting in shape and when your hormones are functioning correctly because you are taking better care of yourself, you will have a tendency to put on size and remain lean.

I think outside factors like misguided individuals that disregard diet are the way they are because they’ve inflicted that upon themselves.

There are many people who were fat, or overly skinny, that turned themselves into mesomorphs and if you didn’t see their before pictures you’d think they were born that way.

[/quote]

That’s a great response. I do agree with some of the things you are saying. I still feel however that people with very low muscle tone will find it hard to make that transformation but I’m sure it does happen.

On second thought we don’t need separate sections … the reality is that probably 80% of the members fall into the same group.

agreed with everything said above

I was a skinnyfat “ectomorph” before and most of the advice was counterproductive. Avoiding isolation work and eating like crazy only made me look more skinnyfat. I think a lot of the advice starts as valid (i.e. eat well + a lot, hit the compound movements intensely) but then somewhere along the line becomes dogma that’s unhelpful in the real world

but to answer the question, no. I think 90% of the game for every newb is to eat a lot of protein and learn how to lift intensely yet safely.

I think ultimately, creating more sub-forums would just enable more newbies to hide behind particular excuses, as opposed to accepting the reality that the vast most majority of non-lifters ar:e (reltively speaking) scrawny, weak, muffin topped individuals.

In addition that, I’d also say, I can’t think of anyone who has trained really hard over the course of 4-5+ years who has stayed at the same basic body type. I do however I know a lot of yo-yo trainers who never really seem to get anywhere.

I’d say one thing, alot of the advice and nutrition articles seem to be geared toward the younger hardgainer type in general. Following that advice as an endo caused some serious spill over recently… glad I put it in check in time.

I have long limbs, and i am very flexible and i learned to tweak my exercises(ROM, neutral grip) to my morphology. Recently there was a great article on that subject. More forums = less responses to our questions, so in my opinion less benefits.

Morphology

[quote]giograves wrote:
I’d say one thing, alot of the advice and nutrition articles seem to be geared toward the younger hardgainer type in general. Following that advice as an endo caused some serious spill over recently… glad I put it in check in time.[/quote]

would you mind elaborating more on that?