WEIGHT TRAINING FOR ECTOMORPHS
By Team iForce Nutrition
Are you the type of guy who has a hard time putting on muscle size and weight? Feel like you aren’t making the gains you should? Then read on, we will explain how Ectomorphs need to be trained to build serious size!
I started weight training at the same height I am now, at a staggering 150 pounds. Now as I type this article I am sitting at 215, with probably less body fat than when I was 150. But it wasn’t always like this. I too had a very hard time putting on size when I first started. My progress was slow and I had to fight for every pound. Since then there has been a revolution in training circles that has made gaining size and strength much easier for Ectomorphs like me and you.
Your body will grow based on 3 equally important factors:
The first and last points are the ones we can address with our training layout. For Ectomorphs, assembling a well thought out training protocol will be the deciding factor in how big you can get. Because, as you can see, it is 2/3 of the battle. All the food and supplements in the world won’t help you if you are over or under stimulating yourself correctly and allowing yourself adequate recovery. By following some basic principles you can insure that you are making the most of your efforts and gaining mass the way you deserve!
The first, and most important factor, is that you need to accept and realize that the current training routine you are doing isn’t providing you with the results you are looking for. For many of us, the routines and exercises we do happen because we think we “have” to. Even if that routine and those exercises haven’t given us the results we want. Therefore, it’s time to break down training to its basic principles. Training should do one thing and one thing only, STIMULATE GROWTH. That doesn’t take as much as you may think. The traditional 3-5 exercises of 3-5 sets of 8-12 reps has gotten you where you are. Is doing that further going to change anything? The answer is no!
Training for Ectomorphs should consist of lower volume, with an emphasis on progressive overload. Training with higher volume, especially for Ectomorphs and Natural athletes, can be a limiting factor in growth and recovery. Your body can only adapt to so much stress. Placing a voluminous load on yourself could mean you are not properly recovering or growing. Keep volume in the 6-9 set range for larger body parts and 3-6 set range for smaller body parts. Focus on using heavy compound exercises that allow you to train with heavier weights. After all, what do you think is going to put size on; a 300 pound bench press, or 5 sets of 20lb dumbbell kickbacks….
Recovery is also a very important and just as or more important than training intensity. As we have seen through countless examples and research, your body is growing when you are NOT training. The days you spend recovering, the nights you spend sleeping, THAT is when you are growing. Training too often (5-7 days a week) will never allow you to properly rest and recover for your training. Because of this, limit your training to 3-4 days a week and devote 3-4 days to recovery. If you are in a cutting phase I would still recommend only light cardio on these days. Use them to rest and recuperate; watch movies, go lay out on the beach, relax and enjoy yourself!
I highly recommend that you make changes to your current routine with the suggestions above. The key to giving your body the chance to grow revolves around properly stimulating muscle growth with Heavy Compound Movements (Dead lifts, Squat, Bench Press), while at the same time limiting volume to keep the workload down. Couple this training approach with less frequent training and more days designated for recovery and you will be on your way to new gains in size and strength!
Here is a sample routine that is very popular:
Monday: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps
Barbell Bench Press: 5 Sets, 10/8/6/4/2
Military Press: 3 Sets 10/8/6
Side Raise: 3 Sets 10/10/10
Tricep Extensions: 5 Sets 16/14/12/10/8
Tuesday: OFF (RECOVERY DAY)
Wednesday: Back and Biceps
Deadlift: 5 Sets 10/8/6/4/2
Wide grip Pulldown: 3 Sets 12/10/8
Barbell Curls: 5 Sets 12/10/8/6/6
Thursday: OFF (RECOVERY DAY)
Friday: Quads, Hamstrings, Calves
Barbell Squat: 5 Sets 10/8/6/4/2
Lunges: 3 Sets 16/12/8
Glute Hamstring Raise: 5 Sets 10/8/6/6/6
Calf Raises: 5 Sets 20/16/12/16/20
Saturday: OFF (RECOVERY DAY)
Sunday: OFF (RECOVERY DAY)
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