Ask the Trainer – Endomorph Question
Q: …I’ve just discovered that my body type is an endomorph type. So like all of us Endomorphs I’m trying to lose that stubborn belly fat! I’m doing p90x phase 2 level 2 and wondering if I should change anything on my plan. I read I need to do at least 30 min a day of cardio and eat equal amounts of protein and carbs every meal. Please help me see the light!…
A: Although I’m generally familiar with the three body types (ectomorph, mesomorph, endomorph) I’ve never paid much attention to them when creating a diet or exercise program fro myself or my clients. I recognize that we all have different metabolisms and different genetics, but the same core elements work for just about everyone.
I will typically customize an individual’s program based on their goals, personal preferences, current fitness level, injury history, age, gender, etc. rather than focusing on the body type models. Nothing wrong with using the them, it’s just not how I’ve leaned to approach it…
Being in phase 2 of P90X means that you’re somewhere between day 30 and day 60 of the program. So, the first thing I would say is that a lot of people find that they don’t really start to see significant results until phase 3. It depends on things like your metabolism (which as an endomorph probably tends to be a little slower than others), how new you are to exercise, and how much weight you have to lose. I don’t know if you’ve done P90X before, but you might just see some of the best results happening in the last 30 days.
Another thing I would look at is your diet. The number one factor when it comes to belly fat is what you eat. I’ll assume that you did the calculations correctly and the level 2 nutrition plan is the right amount of calories for you. If you follow the plan the way they structure it then you don’t need to worry about your macro nutrient breakdown. So, then the question is, how clean is your diet? Are you eating processed foods? Foods with added sugar? Foods with artificial sweeteners? Drinking alcohol? If so, how much? You need to eliminate or reduce these things in your diet as much as possible.
And finally, with regard to doing 30 minutes of cardio a day…I definitely don’t see that as a requirement for fat loss, especially when you’re already doing a program like P90X. However, if you feel like you need more exercise, then try the doubles program. That will add in some extra cardio sessions throughout the week which will boost your calorie and fat burn. Just make sure to pay attention to how you feel and give yourself a break if you notice signs of over training.
Losing belly fat takes time and consistency. It also means eating as clean as you can, as much of the time as you can as well as continuing to work on building muscle. The one last thing I’ll mention is that it’s not always possible to lose fat in a specific area. Spot reducing is a myth, unless you go to a plastic surgeon. So, it’s possible that your genetics will dictate that your body won’t let go of fat in some areas past a certain point or that you have to get super lean in order to achieve your goal. That’s an option, but most people find that level of leanness too hard to maintain.
Thanks so much for your question Rick! I hope this helps.