Your Body Type

A majority of the people that buy P90X have the same goal…to get absolutely RIPPED in just 90 days.  The results that people have experienced through P90X are amazing to say the least.  It is by far the most successful home workout program ever.  There can be some frustration though when it comes to seeing the results you want.

Lets start off with an example here:  2 guys.  Both are doing the P90X classic routine, both guys are laser beam focused on their nutrition, and both are BRINGIN IT everday at 110%.  By the end of the 90 days, these guys should look fairly similar right?  Well, that all depends on the individual.  One of the biggest factors in getting the results you want is something that most often is not considered when tailoring your workouts, nutrition, and supplements to maximize your results….Your body type.

A lot of people forget that genetics has a lot to do with how you build muscle, lose fat and gain fat.  All these factors and more are determined by your genetics.  This doesnt mean that any one of these factors cannot be altered though.  When you understand your body type, you can customize your workouts and nutrition to get the most peak results possible!

So it’s important to be able to identify and understand your body type. Different body types require different training methods and nutrition plans in order to achieve the athletic, RIPPED body we all want. So what I have done below is list the 3 body types; ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph and their characteristics, including a few solutions to obtain an “after photo”/mesomorphic physique.  And no these aren’t some babylon 5/startrek creatures…


An ectomorph is usually the skinny guy that can eat whatever he wants and keep his pencil figure.  They usually have a light build with small joints and lean muscle.  These are the lenky guys with long thin limbs who might snap if the wind blows too hard…j/k ecto’s.

  • Small “delicate” frame and bone structure
  • “Hardgainer” (Hard to gain weight)
  • Flat chest
  • Small shoulders
  • Thin
  • Lean muscle mass
  • Fast metabolism
  • Stoop-shouldered
  • Muscle growth takes longer

For ectomorphs, it is very hard to gain weight. They have a fast metabolism which burns calories very quickly. Ectomorphs need a lot of calories in order to gain mass.  Supplements are definitely recommended. It would be next to impossible for an ecto to eat the necessary caloric intake needed to gain mass.  Ectomorphs should eat before bed to prevent muscle catabolism during the night (body using muscle for energy). Generally, ectomorphs can lose fat without much effort, which makes it easy to cut to a very lean build.


A mesomorph has a larger bone structure, more muscle mass and a naturally athletic physique.  They find it quite easy to gain and lose weight. They are naturally strong which is the perfect platform for building muscle.

  • Athletic
  • Hard body with well defined muscles
  • Rectangular shaped body
  • Thick skin
  • Strong
  • Gains muscle easily
  • Gains muscle faster
  • Gains fat more easily than ectomorphs

The mesomorph body type responds best to weight training. Gains are usually seen very quickly, especially if you are just beginning a workout program. The downside to mesomorphs is they gain fat more easily than ectomorphs. This means they must watch their calorie intake. Usually a combination of weight training and cardio works best for mesomorphs.  That is why P90X is so perfect.


The endomorph body type is solid and generally soft. Endomorphs gain fat very easily. Endo’s are usually of a shorter build with thick arms and legs. They are usually very strong though, especially the upper legs.

  • Soft, round body
  • Gains muscle and fat very easily
  • Is generally short and “stocky”
  • Underdeveloped muscles
  • Finds it hard to lose fat
  • Over-developed digestive system
  • Slow metabolism

For the endomorph, you will want to get well acquainted with cardiovascular exercise and if you are physically able, high intensity interval training.  This will help reduce your body fat percentage.  Weight training is equally important as more muscle burns more fat.  The ectomorphs diet should be at a calorie deficit, meaning that you expends more calories than you are taking in.  This doesnt mean that you starve yourself.  Small, frequent meals will make sure that the metabolism stays turned on.  its like stoking a fire.  Sweets and refined carbs (no more white bread!  I know, you’re weeping!) should be cut completely from your diet.

Body Type Combinations

Now some people might not fit into one of these categories perfectly.  You could be a combination of Ecto/Meso or Endo/Meso.  So dont beat up on yourself if you cant pinpoint exactly what your body type is.  See which characteristics you posses from each body type and modify your diet and exercise to get that mesomorphic build that most of us want.

So What is Your Body Type?

By now you should be able to determine your body type and decide what diet and exercise are right for you.  P90X has taken a lot of the guess work out of this by provided different workout schedules (classic/lean/doubles) and a phased nutrition plan (fat shredder/energy/maintenance).  Be sure and go through your nutrition guide carefully to determine what diet plan will work best with your body type.

For me, I was right between a Endomorph and Mesomorph.  I weighed 228 pounds and had 27% body fat.  I had a slow metabolism at the time, but usually I could loose weight fairly quickly if I wanted.  For me,  I stuck with the P90X classic routine that had a good mix of resistance training and cardio.  This quickly got rid of fat since my heart rate was elevated during the cardio workouts and I was gaining muscle through the resistance training which was speeding up my metabolism.  During the fat shredder phase of my diet I took in around 1900 calories which was a calorie deficit for me.  Based on the calorie intake equation in the fitness guide, I should have been eating 3336 calories per day!!!  No way could I do that and lose weight.  That is because this number is based on someone not trying to lose weight.  So at 1900 calories, I wasnt starving, and I still had plenty of energy to complete the workouts with intensity.  That is what is important.  If you want to see exactly what my diet consisted of, see “My 1900 Calorie Diet“.

I hope this gives you a better idea of how you can maximize your results by understanding your body type and modifying your workouts and diet to achieve the RIPPED physique you want!



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