Our bodies can be placed under 3 basic categories (and further sub-categories) based on the size and shape of it. Knowing ones’ body composition is also a great way to understand lean body mass and body fat. And if your body lies within the range of healthy body-composition, then you’re sorted.
A good body composition is directly related to what you demand from your body—say, if you’re an athlete, then on the percentage scale of body-fat, you’d want to be on the lower side. Though of course your somatotype has to be considered, and it’s not always that being on the lower end is an ideal situation.
Women’s bodies contain more fat than men’s for biological reasons like developing reproductive tissues and better ingestion of vitamins, etc. Thus the range for optimal body-fat, in case of women is 14%-30% and for men, 6%-25%. So if your body-fat is near the lower side while your level of fitness is that of an athlete or general fitness then losing fat won’t benefit your performance. Perhaps you’ll get sick in the process.
Hence, the first step is to identify the body-type you belong to:
You have long limbs and are not really muscular. You’re sort of “skinny fat,” i.e., you don’t weight a lot and/or are small sized though your body fat is on the higher end.
Ectomorphs can usually eat a lot and yet not gain much weight because they have a high metabolism rate. They are light muscled, small framed, and have less obvious body fat. The genetic construction basically disallows any muscles mass to build up on them. During training, concentrate on resistance and power training in order to strengthen your muscles.
You can maximize your body composition (gain in lean-mass loss of body-fat) by consuming best quality fats, carbohydrates, and proteins in a moderate amount of 25-30 grams with each meal (4 meals in a day, in case of a mini-meal before the training). Days when you don’t exercise skip morning and pre-training meals. Let breakfast be gratifying enough to last you till lunch. In case you’ve had an afternoon snack, you can have a lighter dinner than the one mentioned here.
It’s easy for Mesomorphs to both gain and lose weight with ease and they can gain muscle mass quite fast, and mostly have a straight posture. They have short limbs and an extended torso. Women who have this body type are athletic and strong and hence can get into sports that demand speed and power. This is because their muscles are built with fast-twitch fibers and the genetic makeup favors strength and power. Thus, for training, high intensity interval training (HITT), plyometrics, and a modest amount of endurance training should be practiced. To increase your strength, you can also add yoga or Pilates to your routine.
To increase body composition, consume carbohydrates in moderation along with high quality fats. Try timing your branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) and protein intake. Days when you don’t workout, have coffee or green tea during afternoon and don’t have pre-training meal. Have your evening and pre-dinner snacks as usual.
More round and soft in body shape, you gather fat easily.
Endomorphs have a full figure, are curvaceous, and possess high percentage of body-fat. The challenging part in an endomorph’s life is to recognize their body type and thus accept it. You gain weight with more ease and mostly find it difficult to accept the same.
Your metabolism isn’t an easy one though it doesn’t imply that you’ll be obese or overweight. You have to consciously do certain things that your body should do by itself. That is, if you realize that your body demands some movement, you have to exercise daily to make it happen. In case you have a weak metabolism, your diet should include foods that are easily digestible. In case of training, CrossFit and HIIT should be preferred as activities with high intensity, and you can also practice modest endurance training and weight training. For dietary purposes, increase body composition by limiting carbohydrate intake and have high quality fats. Blood sugar and insulin should be controlled. Days when you don’t exercise, within 45 minutes since you woke up, have breakfast for a flat-belly and skip snacks before and after training. Carefully consume afternoon snack in a modest amount.