Exercise for your body type and avoid the frustration of poor results

Some Body Types build muscle and burn fat really easily

body type exercise

Body type. That’s it. It’s down to body type (and motivation).

You know this. You go to the gym or an exercise class, and the people around you seem to get results quickly.

Looking down, you see that your own body is defying you. Putting up to fingers and going, meh!

Why is that?

And what makes those people getting results get those results?

I could tell you that life just isn’t fair so get over it

But I’m not going to tell you to get over it.

Instead, I’m going to tell you a story. Only a short story I promise.

Once upon a time there was a pear-shaped girl

body shapes

There was once a pear-shaped girl who was not aware that she was pear-shaped.

How she could have missed that fact is not something to consider here.

But, because she didn’t know she was a pear, she didn’t understand that her body tended to carry fat on the hips, thighs and arms.

Not having that understanding was hampering her efforts in the gym


Because she blindly followed the exercise habits of her rectangle friend. The friend with the athletic body and ability to burn fat at will.

Our pear-shaped friend (let’s say for the sake of argument we’re talking about me) really believed she just had to put in more effort and she’d become the rectangle she craved to be.

I didn’t have a prayer. Once a pear, always a pear.

Instead, I learned to embrace my shape and make the most of it.

And, with the help of a lot of research plus a healthy dose of trial and error, that learning to love my shape, including some changes to the way I exercise, gave me a a healthier, stronger body.

My body-shape is still pear. But it’s now a trim pear, and I love the exercise I do.

That makes for a very contented pear.

Words of wisdom I wish I’d been told earlier

For all body types, diet determines your body’s size, while exercise determines your muscle-to-fat ratio. Eating well and training wisely helps you body to become tighter and more toned in good ways.

Everyday Health gave me those words of wisdom. Check out the article here.

find your body type and match it to exercise that works for you

exercise over 50

For me, the perfect exercise routine incorporates different elements.

I love yoga for flexibility, strength, balance, and to ease my lower back pain.

Yoga has been a revelation. Practising yoga didn’t just help my flexibility. It helped me to tone up and build long, lean muscles.

Having a pear body-shape is one thing. And it seems that, in terms of body type, I’m an endomorph with a bit of ectomorph thrown in for good measure.

Body Type

There are 3 main body types; ectomorph, endomorph and mesomorph.

Body types are the same for both men and women.


The typical ectomorph is lean and long. They have difficulty building muscle and will always remain lean regardless of how many weights they lift in the gym.

If you’re an ectomorph you could well be a rectangle.


The endomorph body type has a high percentage of body fat and is often pear-shaped (see above) or apple. Endomorphs store fat quickly but have difficulty shifting it.


Your typical mesomorph is easy to spot in the gym or exercise class. All eyes are on them, with their high metabolism and the ability to build muscle efficiently. Damn those mesomorphs.

They’re probably inverted triangles in body shape terms.

Use this information to your advantage

There’s little point in lifting heavy weights if,

A – you don’t enjoy it, or;

B – your chances of building muscle like those you admire on your training buddy are nil.

Stop demanding your body becomes something it isn’t and will never be.

Start appreciating your body shape and body type so you can workout smarter.

Note: the link above describes male body type characteristics. Don’t worry, though. There’s very little out there for the female body type, but they are the same in many aspects.

Most information out there confuses body shape with body type.

We don’t confuse the two.

On that basis, use the body type link to help you.

body types male, body types female

For your guide to finding your body shape click here

Of course, you may be a mixture of two body types where one takes precedence, but there are elements of another. Take the results of the blending of your body shape with the characteristics of the three main body types and use them to help you reach your fitness target.

Not being an expert on diet and exercise to match to my body type, I took time out to do some research.

Now I’m sharing the fruits of my research and personal experience with you.

The Ectomorph And Exercise

Ectomorphs have high metabolism with low muscle mass. As a result, ectomorphs don’t build muscle easily and they have low fat stores.

Keep to low levels of cardio exercise, for instance use cardio as your warm up and do no more than 30 minutes of cardio per session. Compound exercise is great for ectomorphs.

Compound exercises are exercises that work for multiple muscle groups at the same time. For example, a squat is a compound exercise that works the quadriceps, glutes, and calves.

You can also do compound exercises that combine two activities into one move to target even more muscles, for example, a lunge with a bicep curl.

Yoga is a good exercise for ectomorphs as it combines strength with flexibility and helps to build long lean muscles.

The Mesomorph And Exercise

body types and exercise

Meanwhile over in mesomorph territory are the people who build muscle easily whilst rarely storing fat. Unless of course they are inactive mesomorphs.

For the mesomorph any kind of exercise is going to be beneficial. If you’re one of these lucky people you get to choose the exercises that make you happy and forget about those that don’t.

For example, cardio and strength routines will work well. In terms of strength exercises, a mixture of compound exercises and isolation work will deliver benefits using moderate to heavy weights. Cardio

The Endomorph and Exercise

Endomorphs store weight around the middle. Often Apple-shaped, the endomorph should target belly fat as it presents particular health concerns.

For this reason, cardio should form the backbone of the endomorphs exercise plan. Alternate cardio with resistance based exercise and don’t forget your upper body strength.

The endomorph needs to think about their diet as well. Low-fat is not necessarily the solution, so do your research and be clear on what a healthy diet is and how it supports your exercise routine.

But don’t just take my word for it

Browsing through YouTube I found someone whose lockdown workouts I really liked.

Joanna Soh is my new workout crush.

There were some great low-impact workouts suitable for me to do in my study upstairs, without causing falling plaster in the room below.

Always a bonus.

Not only does Joanna Soh give you great workouts she matches them to body types

If you want to see a great video on exercise and diet to suit your body type – derived from your body shape – then try this link. It’s a good video packed with information.

Nutrition and healthy eating.

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