While you may aspire to lose weight, another may aspire to get a thick athletic body type or vice versa. Over time, the people with exceptional athletes’ physiques have made most people desire the same body shape. Because of this, many have gone on a quest and are giving more than 100% of their efforts to attain this goal.
The problem is that your efforts may be futile, especially if you are not focusing on the correct workouts. Again, like any other fitness goal, it may not be worthwhile if you also do not focus on your diet.
In this article, we will shed more light on what is required for an athletic body type for both males and females. Read on as we explore how you can attain an athletic body type by focusing on the right diets and training. We have scientific and expert-approved evidence that backs up all these tips, diets and training programs.
Which Body Type Is Considered The Most Athletic?
Being athletic is one of the fitness goals of many people who start working out. It may also be your goal to be athletic and have an athletic body type. There is a belief that you have to be of a particular body shape to be acknowledged as athletic.
The reality is that we all have different body shapes and could be athletic no matter what body shape we have. However, a specific body shape is termed more athletic than others as it is seen as the ideal athletic physique. Let us evaluate all body shapes and determine which body type this is.
If you have this body shape, it means you are curvier than others and have high body fat. It is quite easy for you to gain either muscle or weight, but very challenging to lose weight (9).
Read More: The Body Type Quiz To Help You Figure Out Your Goals
Having such a body shape means you have less fat and muscles than others. You tend to have longer limbs and a leaner body shape. The disadvantage of having this body type is the struggle to gain either weight or muscle.
You could also have a body shape that combines both the ectomorph and endomorph body types. In this case, it means that you have more body fat on your lower body and a thin upper body. The weight distribution depicted in this body shape gives you more of a pear shape figure.
The above body shape is also a combination of the endomorph and ectomorph body shapes. Unlike an ecto-endomorph, endo-ectomorphs have a high-fat content in their upper body. Their lower body also tends to be slimmer.
If you have this body shape, it means that you are medium build with higher muscular development. You tend to have a muscular chest, limbs and shoulders. You also have less body fat. Likewise, your weight tends to be evenly distributed throughout your body.
These features make this body shape to be known as the most natural athletic physique (3). Similarly, it is also considered athletic as you have a relatively high muscle-fat-ratio. As a result, you are much stronger and athletic. These are some differences that help in distinguishing athletic vs slim body types.
It, therefore, means that an athletic body type is one that is muscular but not particularly curvy. Hence, it is rare to have a curvy athletic body type.
Determining If You Are Athletic
Looking at these various body types, you may have an idea of whether you are athletic or not. However, it may not be so clear if you do not understand your body shape. If this is the case for you it will be challenging to determine if you are indeed athletic or not.
You cannot tell if you are athletic by simply assessing how you look. You ought to measure up and accurately figure out your fitness levels or athletic performance and endurance. You need to measure up how fit or athletic you are before you start working towards your fitness goals.
It will help if you choose a realistic workout plan to help in attaining these goals. If you want to become athletic using aerobic programs, then you need to first determine your aerobic fitness level. Similarly, if you want to start a weightlifting program, first measure up how fit you are for strength training.
You will need some equipment, for example, a stopwatch, weights, bicycle, or skipping rope. This will vary depending on what exercise program you want to start. Nevertheless, most importantly, you will need a fitness instructor to help in identifying your fitness levels.
How To Measure If You Are Athletic Or Fit?
To measure aerobic fitness, your trainer will target your heart rate zone. They will determine how fast your heart pounds while engaging in aerobic activity. They will also take into account factors such as your age and the intensity of your activity.
They will target a heart rate zone of 98 to 166 if you are aged 25 (4). As you go up this age ladder, they will reduce their heart rate zone. For example, if you are 45 years, they will target 88 to 149 beats in a minute.
The sample above is one of the ways you can measure if you are athletic enough to take on aerobic activities. The method may change depending on your interested exercise program.
For example, if you choose muscular strength exercises, your fitness will be determined by how many reps you complete. Again, age will also play an integral role in determining how athletic you are.
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How To Get An Athletic Body Type?
Getting a male or female athletic body type is achievable. However, you must be ready to put in some work and break your back, especially if you have the endomorph body type. Here are tips that can help you get this muscular physique:
Knowing Your Body Type
Before you start working towards an athletic body type, you need to first determine your current body shape. Such knowledge will help you understand what to work on to help in attaining this desired body shape.
Likewise, this will help you figure out what exercises work best for you (2). You may break your back with some exercises and end up getting no results. This happens when you do not understand your body shape as well as what works best for it.
You are advised to seek professional help when it comes to figuring out exercise programs to help you become athletic. This may save you from weeks, hours or months of doing the wrong exercises.
One thing you will notice in the fitness world is that fitness and diet go hand in hand. You will only attain favorable fitness results when you also improve your diet. This means nutrition is key and by necessity need to seek the services of an accredited nutritionist or dietitian.
Usually, these professionals will ask you about your fitness goals. In our case, the goal is getting an athletic body. Your goals help them craft practical meal plans that promote results aligning with your fitness goals.
Below are more comprehensive diet tips for those of you who are looking to get an athletic body type:
Eat Your Carbs
Carbohydrates are among the most vital food groups in an athlete’s diet. They are their primary fuel (1). They are converted into glucose in the body and stored in your muscles as glycogen. Glycogen is the component that is converted into energy whenever you exercise.
As such, carbs should never be missed in your meal plan. Talk to your nutritionist to learn what carbohydrates you need to add to your diets and still consume enough calories.
Consume Enough Proteins
One-third of your mesomorph diet should be made up of proteins. They provide enough fuel for your energy. However, you need to regulate how much protein you consume. Too many of them may strain your kidneys (1).
There are several examples of foods containing the proteins that you can choose to eat. They include eggs, red meat, beans, lentils, chicken, turkey, and so on. Although the list is endless, you still need to go through it with your dietitian.
Endomorphs in particular, have to focus on consuming lean proteins. This will help in keeping them fuller for a longer duration, regulating how much and how often they eat (5).
Read More: Are Proteins Essential for Your Diet and What Foods Provide Them?
Eat Your Fruits And Veggies
You also need to eat fruits and veggies when you are working towards getting an athletic body type. They contain essential vitamins, fiber, antioxidants and minerals that work together to help in several body functions. For example, energy production, digestion and injury prevention.
The sweet fruity tastes may help in satisfying your sweet tooth and minimizing your cravings for candy and sweets. However, remember that they too contain calories. Make sure you do not overeat these to avoid consuming more calories than expected.
You must drink your water regardless of whether you want to get that athletic body shape or not. Despite quenching your thirst, water also helps in preventing heat stroke and heat exhaustion while you are exercising under the sun (7).
You must drink at least two or three cups of water before you exercise. Also, remember to hydrate as you work out and after you complete your exercise regimen.
Exercising is one of the quickest ways in which you can attain a muscular body type. However, just because it is the fastest method does not mean it will yield the fastest results. The speed of your results may be influenced by factors such as your current body weight and your consistency of exercise.
The exercise plan you choose will be influenced by your goals. For example, if your aim is gaining muscle, then you will need to prioritize weight training exercises. Similarly, if your goal is getting that lean and muscular body type, you ought to incorporate both cardio and weights (3).
Some of the best cardio exercises that you can try at home are running, jogging, cycling and swimming. Experts recommend that endomorphs start by performing cardio activities for at least 30 minutes and five days every week (5).
Such exercises will get the heart pumping and may trigger the body to burn some calories. After shedding some pounds, endomorphs may now switch to weight lifting. These workouts will come in handy in strengthening their muscles and yet still burn calories.
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Here are samples of some weightlifting workouts that they can try:
The Chest Press
The above exercise is one of the best upper body weight lifting workouts. You will need a pair of dumbbells to perform this exercise. Here is how you do it (6):
- Lie on the floor and face the ceiling.
- Bend your knees and grab the dumbbells on each of your hands.
- Your upper arms must be perpendicular to your body and lower arms perpendicular to the floor.
- Start to slowly press the weights until the point whereby your elbows are almost straight. Try to avoid locking your elbows into a straight position. You will feel the tension across your upper chest.
- Return your arms to the starting position. Make sure you do not drop your elbows below the bench if you were performing this exercise on a bench.
- Repeat and complete your reps or sets.
Biceps Curl With Dumbbells
The exercise above is also obtained from Mayo Clinic’s website. It is an incredible workout option if you want to build your biceps. To perform it, do the following:
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and knees slightly bent. Hold a dumbbell in each of your hands and let your palms face upward.
- Slowly start to curl these loads up by bending your elbows. Your elbows must be close to your body.
- To lower these loads, slowly straighten the elbows to return your arms to the starting position. The tension of this exercise will be felt in the front part of your upper arm. If you want a challenge, work both arms simultaneously.
Here are some tips that can help you benefit more from your exercise programs:
- Seeking help. A trainer can help you maintain a good level of physical fitness by guiding you along with your regime. They will teach you how to do the correct forms of your workouts.
- Be persistent. You cannot get an athletic body type by hitting the gym or doing cardio once in a blue moon. The more you exercise, the faster you activate your results and are more likely to look and feel good (8).
The Bottom Line
An athletic body type refers to a body shape that is muscular, less curvy and with less body fat. You can attain such a shape by eating the right foods and exercising with the right programs. If you do this, you will automatically look and feel good.
The article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and must not be relied on while making any decisions. Consult a licensed physician before making any changes to your diet, health or exercise program.
- 5 Nutrition Tips for Athletes (2012, webmd.com)
- 10 Tips for an Olympic Body (20008, webmd.com)
- Everything you need to know about the mesomorph body type (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)
- How fit are you? See how you measure up (2020, mayoclinic.org)
- ‘Morph’ Into Your Ideal Body (2005, medicinenet.com)
- Slide show: Weight training exercises (2020, mayoclinic.org)
- Slideshow: Fitness Tips for Beginner Athletes (2020, webmd.com)
- What does being physically fit mean? (2017, medicalnewstoday.com)
- What to know about the endomorph diet (2019, medicalnewstoday.com)