My sister’s friend Janice once told me that knowing your body type plays a big factor in choosing a diet program. Everybody is born with a different body type. This is why every man and woman has a different body shape, and develops different levels of body fat and muscle mass. Our body type is completely determined by genetics.

When we start eating for our body type, we’ll be amazed at how quickly our body will adapt to our type’s eating plan. Energy will improve and weight will come off naturally.

These are the three different body types:

  1. ENDOMORPHS: Endomorphs tend to have bigger bones than the other body types. These men and women usually have round faces with larger thighs and hips. Endomorphs have arms and legs that tend to be short and tapering, giving them a stocky appearance. Most endomorphs have comparatively small hands and feet and a high waist. Additionally, endomorphs have higher levels of body fat than the other body types, but they can also build muscle and lean mass easily. Weight loss is most difficult for the endomorph body type.
  2. MESOMORPHS: Mesomorphs are usually described as having an athletic build. They often have an hourglass or ruler shape, and gain muscle mass easily. The majority of mesomorphs have broad shoulders and a narrow waist. They have a fast metabolism and can lose weight more easily than endomorphs.
  3. ECTOMORPHS: Ectomorphs have a thin, linear appearance. Most ectomorphs look like rulers, with narrow waists, hips, and shoulders. Ectomorphs can lose weight easily and tend to have low levels of body fat. However, they also have a harder time gaining lean muscle mass.

Few people actually fall distinctly into one category. Instead, it is much more likely that we will be a combination of the body types. Common combinations include ecto-mesomorph and endo-mesomorph.

In addition to our body type, we will also find that we have a distinct body shape. Our body shape is based upon the size of our physical features and the overall balance of our body. Men and women tend to have different body shapes. Men are often described as having a rectangular shape or a cone shape. Women are typically described as having hourglass, pear, apple, or ruler body shapes.

Before we can perform the right exercises for our body, we need to determine which type of body shape we have.

HOURGLASS: Women with an hourglass shape are often envied by all of their friends. This is because hourglasses have well-proportioned upper and lower bodies, with a distinctively narrow waist. However, if we are an hourglass, we may find that we tend to gain weight all over our body, particularly in our hips and chest area. Hourglasses tend to be endomorphs or mesomorphs.

If we have an hourglass figure, then we should be focusing on both cardio and resistance exercises. Cardio will assist in keeping our weight in check, while resistance exercises will helpt to maintain balance between our upper and lower body.

Vary our repetitions and keep our resistance weights light so as not to build too much muscle mass. Here are some great exercises that we may want to try:

Slow jogging

Stationary biking (with light resistance)

Jumping jacks


Bicep curls, shoulder presses, and squats


PEAR: Pear-shaped women tend to have larger lower bodies and smaller upper bodies. If you are a pear, you will find that your hips are slightly wider than your shoulders and that you tend to gain weight below your waist. Pears usually have small chests and flat stomachs. Most pears are mesomorphs.

Having a pear shaped body, we should focus on exercises that will balance out the top half of our body with the bottom half of our body. We should also try to thin down our lower half. To achieve this, focus on aerobic activities that work out our lower body, and resistance exercises that will build our upper body. Use light weights and perform high repetitions of exercises. Some great activities include:


Cycling (with low resistance)

Elliptical training

Jumping rope

Leg lifts and dips

Push ups, chin ups, and shoulder presses

APPLE: Apples are generally bigger on the top half of bodies than on the bottom half. Common are slim hips and a large chest and stomach. Apples tend to gain weight above the waist or along the backside. The majority of apples are mesomorphs or endomorphs.

Having an apple shape, we should focus on aerobic training in order to slim down and lose body fat. By working on the lower half of our body, we can help balance out our chest and shoulders. Look to perform exercises that are low-resistance and involve low repetitions, such as:

Stair climbing

Walking on an incline


Leg squats, leg presses, and dead lifts

RULER: Women with a ruler shape tend to be waif-like and slim. Rulers have no large differences between the size of hips, waists, and shoulders. Ruler tend to put on weight in the stomach and backside, while maintaining slender arms and legs. Most rulers are ectomorphs.

Having a ruler body type, we can perform pretty much any activity we want to. Perform cardio activities to help us lose weight in problem areas, such as the buttocks and stomach. We can build muscle mass through resistance exercise. To ensure we can build a symmetrical body shape, all of the muscle groups should be emphasized and routinely given a workout. Focus on:



Step classes


Walking or jogging on an incline


Bench presses and shoulder presses