I recently reviewed a book discussing different training styles for different body types. It was a good book. It made sense. If you have long, gazelle-like legs, then you’re probably good at running and you probably have a hard time building muscle. For men, if you are shaped liked an apple and carry a lot of middle-weight, then building muscle may be easier than burning fat for you.
It’s no surprise that there is another book out about how to train for you body type. After all, there are books out that says you should eat according to your blood type.
What are my thoughts?
Who we are and where we come from dictates a lot about our body type. For example, it’s not a coincidence that many accomplished long distance marathon runners come from Africa. They’ve got amazing, fit bodies, that has an optimum VO2 Max (oxygen efficiency, perfect for competition) and long, lean legs. You don’t see a lot of Asians playing competitive basketball, nor do you see a lot of Africans excelling in water sports. Of course, there are always exceptions. Jeremy Lin is one.
As you train your body, it’s important to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to know your limitations. It’s important to be realistic about your training and goals.
– I have a very proportioned physique. I can gain ten pounds without being noticed. (this is NOT a good thing)
– I have a re-occurring injury on my left shoulder blade that probably started when I sprained my right ankle nearly fifteen years ago. Your body will always compensate for your weaknesses and for me, my whole left side is weaker.
– I have a long torso and short legs. I hate this aspect of myself. I wish I had long legs. But desiring to be like a runway model is unrealistic and not in my cards. The good thing? I look like I lose weight immediately after giving birth because I don’t store much fat in my mid-section (because I have a long torso and am proportionate muscle-wise) and if I lean down JUST enough, my legs can look a little longer.
– I have strong calves. I know a lot of Chinese people who have strong legs, especially calves, without trying very hard. In fact, if someone were to offer free plastic surgery and guarantee I will be fine afterwards, I may take them up on cutting half my calf muscle! Seriously. You will never see me on a calf strength machine. It builds naturally and exists very naturally!
– I don’t have an extreme ‘pear shape’ and will never have a butt like Jennifer Lopez or Kim Kardashian. If I do a thousand squats a day, it’s not going to happen.
So it’s funny to me when people want to be something when it’s so obvious that their not built for it.
My point to this entire post is to make you self-reflect on your own strengths and weakneses – to create role models that fit your body type. Role models also can be in the form of someone you relate to (ethnicity, age, status). But for this posts sake, we are just talking about role models with the same body type.
CLICK HERE to test your body type. OR maybe you can already resonate with one of the images below? Whatever you look CLOSELY like – know that you may not look like Giselle because your are a natural pear-shape, but you can look as close as you can to Jennifer Love-Hewitt!
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