Endomorph Diet and Bodybuilding

Endomorphs like myself are naturally large and soft. They may or may not have much muscle initially, but they put on muscle mass fairly easily and quickly. Legs in particular are often naturally massive. Unfortunately endos also put on fat quickly.

I often joke that if I walk past a gym I put on muscle, and if I walk past a restaurant I put on fat – not too far from the truth.

An Endomorph’s Diet is harder to get right than their Workouts!

Two plans ideal for Endomorphs you should check out are:

Although most workouts will work, Endomorphs need to get into the gym as often as they can without overtraining. They generally react well to heavy exercise, but also need to do cardio to keep the fat level in check. It is easy to gain lots of muscle and fat at the same time, and very difficult to lose that fat afterwards so keep that fat in check.

Endomorph Bodybuilder
Building Muscle – Easy, Controlling Fat – Hard

Many prescribe high reps to burn more fat, but what works is going to vary depending on the individual. It’s not one fit for all endos for weight training. Low reps with heavy weights work for me, together with going to the gym just infrequently enough to avoid overtraining.

Cardio like biking and running (not too much running as it is stressful on the body and can help lead to overtraining) is not only good, but usually required.

Cardio at least twice a week, preferably more, to help combat fat!

The problem is most endomorphs do not seem to like cardio, but you can find cardio you enjoy if you work at it.

Despite years of complaining that I hate cardio, I do find I enjoy biking and well as hiking and skiing. Skiing and hiking are time intensive as they require travel for me so I do not do them as much. I also found, much to my chagrin, that I enjoy running, although it’s usually a few months on and then a few months off.

Cardio is AT LEAST as important as your weight training!

You do need to find cardio you enjoy to keep your fat percentage down. Whatever cardio works for you. Do it religiously as it’s at least as important as your resistance workouts.

Enough proper nutrition is far less of an issue with endomorphs than with other body types. Too much food is the issue. “Bulking” is bad because although the muscle piles on the fat also does and then lingers.

Diet – The Key to Endomorph Bodybuilding Success!

There are multiple diets that can work for an endomorph, especially when paired with consistent cardio, and these can include low carb, slow carb, as well as more traditional bodybuilder diets as long as you watch what you eat – quantity is more of a problem than quality, although you want to eat reasonable healthily as well. Once again, you need to find what works for you.

Two resource that can help enormously an endomorph get ripped are:

Bottom line: lots of exercise and don’t eat too much. The muscle comes easy but the battle is controlling the fat, so plenty of exercise of all types and eat well.

12 thoughts on “Endomorph Diet and Bodybuilding”

  1. Like you Ted, I am an endomorph. Before I started lifting I was soft and flabby. I have a lot of muscle now, I built it easily and quickly in part because going to the gym is addictive – it makes me feel great.

    Two things that you wrote turned on the lightbulb in my head: “Cardio is AT LEAST as important as your weight training! and “Diet – The Key to Endomorph Bodybuilding Success!”

    When my bodyfat is low I look very good or at least everyone says so. When I have that extra 20-30 pounds my body loves to pile on, not so good although way better than I used too.

    Since the muscle isn’t the issue, I’ll take your advice and concentrate on cardio and a better diet!

    1. That diet is essential and the hardest part for many of us – not that you can’t have the occasional beer, but try to severely limit midnight pizzas, pig outs at buffets, and other things like that which used to kill me.

      I still have fun eating, a lot of it, trust me!

  2. Just thought I’d add that as an endo, my ecto friends are jealous at my muscle, both the relative ease of putting it on and maintaining it. And I am jealous at how my endos can eat everything on the planet seemingly without adding and fat!

  3. I like the idea that cardio is important but wont weight training help burn fat as well?

    slow carb diet is effective but is it good for long term??

    1. MY ancestors ate primarily a slow carb diet – no potatoes, rice, etc. in my part of the Mediterranean. Occasional whole grain bread, but not daily. Weight training does burn fat certainly, and muscle even at rest burns fat, but we need some arobic activity as well.
      And if you tend towards gaining fat, as my body does, it is even more important!

  4. “Endomorph’s Diet is harder to get right than their Workouts!” really hits home! My workouts are simply great, but even with shitty workouts (like when I was traveling for an entire month a while back) I make and keep gains. It’s the diet that’s hard for me! Second is the aerobic exercise. I was on the 17th floor of a hotel and I started taking the stairs – exhausting but great!

  5. I’m an endomorph and I’m OK, I make gains all night and I eat all day! But I should eat better – thanks for the motivation and recipes Old Chum

  6. I’m 6’4, 255 Lbs.
    Just got back into the gym and I’m an Endomorph.
    My body type and genetics allow me to build muscle fast, though if I don’t balance my diet right, I gain fat (which covers the muscles and makes me look big and soft).
    I don’t want to lose too much weight, maybe 20 Lbs, but I do want to make my muscles bigger and stronger.
    With the amount of free time I have, I’ve been going to the gym for 2-4 hours/ 4-5 times a week; with an hour of cardio and 1-3 hours of weight lifting.

    How long do you think it will take me (a classic endomorph) to look like a superhero?
    I’m talking Hercules.

    Also, what do you recommend as far as my regiment is concerned?
    I eat right, but just enough to maintain my weight.
    I’ve been back in the gym for 2 weeks and this will be a long term thing, I just want an idea of how long it should take for a big, already bulky guy like me to go from kinda soft, to hard as stone.

    Thanks for your input!

    1. Hi Vincenzo,

      There are sooo many variables, but let me say two things:

      1) We all slip at times. I’m just coming off of 6 weeks of mostly travel and I’m not as fit (or ripped) as I should be right now – it is temporary though!

      2) In one months time you should be able to make MASSIVE improvements. You don’t need to be perfect to do this. 3-4 months you will be looking even more awesome!

      And I’m off to bed so I can hit the gym early!

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