Who is a mesomorph?
Mesomorph is one of the three types of human body. The main characteristic of mesomorphs is a muscular figure from nature. Worldwide, only 10-15% of people are mesomorphs, but most professional athletes and fitness models have this somatotype.
Mesomorphs usually have an elevated level of testosterone and a fast metabolism against a background of good appetite - this makes it easy to gain muscle mass. However, their main problem is that they treat their sports body as "due", and with age often lose shape.
Mesomorph or meso-ectomorph?
In its pure form, body types are extremely rare - real people are often a mixture of different somatotypes. Not too sporty mesomorphs can mistakenly rank themselves as ectomorphs, and overfeeded with sweets and gaining excess weight in childhood - to endomophrams.
To manifest its mesomorphic component, it will take months( or even years) of regular exercise and a proper diet. If you have doubts about your somatotype, take a good look at your parents. The type of body is most often inherited( 1).
Metabolism of mesomorphs
The main differences in the metabolism of mesomorphs are a decreased cortisol production( 2) and a high P-ratio ( ability to metabolize protein from food).Musomorphs of the mesomorph get more nutrition and recover faster after weight training, so they can train much more often.
Due to high levels of growth hormone and testosterone, mesomorphs are hard at gaining fat mass, and up to a certain age they can afford to eat high-calorie food without restrictions. This is the root of most of the problems of this somatotype - they tend to underestimate the importance of diet.
Importance of the sports diet
If a typical endomorph begins to swim with fat at the slightest excess of caloric intake, and the ectomorph for weight gain must be intensively fed every few hours - then the mesomorph does not need such extremes. Their metabolism by nature is "tuned" to send energy to the muscles.
However, uncontrolled use of carbohydrates with a high glycemic index disrupts the body's response to insulin and worsens the hormonal balance. At the same time, a high level of testosterone only hurts, causing an accelerated deposition of fat on the stomach and increasing the risk of heart disease.
Recommendations for feeding
Mesomorphs should pay special attention to the amount of saturated animal fats in the diet and not exceed the limit of 10-15 g of such fats for every 1000 kcal. Otherwise, they risk increasing the level of "bad" cholesterol. The total share of fats should not exceed 30-35% of all calories.
The level of carbohydrate intake is acceptable at the upper limit, but it is not recommended to exceed the ratio of proteins to carbohydrates as 0.35-0.45 - that is, the proteins need approximately 2.5-3 times less than than carbohydrates. Otherwise, an excess of protein will lead to a decrease in testosterone.
Training program for mesomorph
Because of the metabolic features, any training will be effective for the mesomorph. Representatives of this somatotype usually do not have problems with the collection of muscle mass, nor with the elaboration of the relief or the creation of an ideal press. The main rule of their training is constant variability.
Men-mesomorphs, due to high testosterone, have an increased tendency to the spirit of competition - that's why group training in the spirit of CrossFit will seem to them more interesting than the usual basic program for muscle growth, performed in the gym in splendid isolation.
Training strategy for the mesomorph
It is important to remember that the mesomorph is more a sprinter than a marathon runner. This type of physique is best suited to high-intensity short workouts with glycogen as the main fuel, rather than the long-term medium and low-speed loads that cause the body to spend fat reserves.
Another feature of the training strategy for the mesomorph is the rapid adaptation of the muscles to the loads, reaching the plateau and stopping in progress. That is why they are recommended to regularly change not only exercises, but the training program itself, or even the kind of sports activity.
Mesomorph is a classic sports body type with the best genetic preconditions for muscle growth and fat burning. The most effective training for mesomorphs are "explosive" high-intensity short loads, as well as competitive sports.
- Multilevel modelling of somatotype components: the Portuguese sibling study on growth, fitness, lifestyle and health, source
- Somatotype and stress hormone levels in young soccer players, source