Ectomorph Training

So after a request from a reader, I will be writing a three part series of blogs going into greater detail of the different body types and how to train them. Each body type relies on different training regimens to reach maximum potential. If you’re reading this and you’re an ectomorph, this one goes out to you!


An ectomorph who wants to gain muscle and strength has a significant battle against them. Though the individual may work out a consistent amount, they may find it highly difficult to put on any type of bulk of muscle mass. However, if they do accomplish to put on muscle, the muscle they put on is lean and clean.

So, in consideration to ectomorphs and their training, the three basic topics to always concentrate on are:

  • Diet
  • Lifting
  • Training


Yes, a lot! For any person training themselves for muscle growth and increased performance, the intake of calories and protein has to be increased. However, ectomorphs need to eat a lot more food than the regular gym goers.  Specifically, someone who has the ectomorph body type should be eating anywhere between 5-6 meals per day (if not more) when on a training regimen.

Clean Eating

Another issue with ectomorphs is that they stress to clean eat just like the rest of the body types. Don’t stress over it! As an ectomorph, your body is going to use more calories and more nutrition that you intake over the amount of another body type. This means you shouldn’t primarily focus on eating cleaner and less calories. Eat a snickers bar, maybe even some fried chicken every now and then. You’ll be okay, I promise.


Ectomorphs respond the best to supplements over other body types. I don’t mean that other body types don’t response well to supplements; I mean that ectomorphs can use supplementation more effectively than other body types. If you’re struggling to put on weight, and your protein intake is low, I would advise getting on some whey protein or mass gainer. This will give your body more resources to fuel growth and endurance.


The lifting for an ectomorph needs to be heavy! Okay, not just the ectomorph, every body type should be lifting heavy, but the ectomorph especially! The body builds and gains muscle by causing high muscle tension on muscle groups and fibers. How is this accomplished? Through heavy weights and multi-muscle group concentrated lifting. The key is to concentrate on your heavy compound and multiple compound movements. The muscle movements utilize multiple muscle groups and joints with different lines of movements.

Great Workouts Using this Method

  • Barbell Squat
  • Power Clean/Press
  • Deadlifts

Although I will say don’t do these on the same day. Some of these workouts use the same muscle groups, which could actually hinder the growth process.


Training as an ectomorph has to be consistent and heavy. Concentrate on compound lifts that utilize multiple muscle groups while doing a singular line of movement. Lifting heavy weights in this fashion will ensure a wider spectrum of training, while growing in both strength and endurance. Make sure to have primary concentration on one muscle group per day, to provide the best possible chance of growth. It’s not a problem to workout multiple muscle groups in a compound movement, just don’t overdo it, that will strain the growth progress.


Training as an ectomorph, whether it be to grow in size, strength, or endurance, is an uphill battle. However, it is possible! Think of it this way, you get to eat more and grow lean muscle over fatty muscle. Focus on lifting heavy, utilizing compound exercises, and eating A LOT, and you’ll be golden!

Ectomorph Training
Ectomorph Training

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