Over 40 Amateur Of The Week: Ectomorphs Can Grow Too!
My fitness journey started after my amateur basketball career. Basketball was and still is a passion of mine. My dream was to play in the NBA, but my opportunity to make that dream a reality was cute short due to arthritic knees, which lead me down the wrong path.
I started to party all night, sleep all day, and became depressed. I spent several years living this lifestyle. Basketball was my wife and when we divorced nothing else really mattered. One morning, or I should say afternoon after a night of partying, I got out of bed and my body felt like I was an old man. I was 23 years old and felt as if I was 50 years old. That day, I decided to change and get back to being the athlete I was.
I omitted the late-night drinking and early morning eating. I went from fast food to a more well-balanced and healthier diet. I'm an ectomorph, so I've always found it difficult to gain weight. I increased my protein to about two grams per pound and the growth took off. I noticed the change in my physique after about a month and so did my friends and family. The gym became a staple in my life. I discovered that bodybuilding is about improving your body and competing against yourself. My confidence was back.
My workout schedule is Sunday-Saturday. I typically take a day off during the week for rest and recovery. I try to focus on one body part per day to elevate joint soreness and to channel in on isolating one body part. I change my routine every 3-4 weeks or when I notice muscle memory coming into play. My rep range runs from 6-8 reps when going heavy and 10-12 reps for hypertrophy. There are many who argue that there's no need to do high rep sets. The important factor is the effect of glycogen on protein synthesis. It works for me. I utilize a push movement followed by a pull movement. Because of my body type, I don't perform much cardio. When I do, it consists of HIIT, running in place, or jumping jacks for 45-60 seconds between sets. My HIIT training would be sprinting for 100 yards and walking 100 yards for 20-30 minutes.
I concentrate on the macros (protein, carbs, and fats). I eat every three and a half hours or when I feel hungry. I never starve myself.
My fitness journey started after my amateur basketball career at age 23. I was tired and depressed from partying all the time. I woke up one day, decided to change my life, and have been hitting the gym since.
I decided with my cousin to start hitting the iron. We joined a local gym and the quest was on. But it didn't last too long. I called my cousin and asked if he was hitting the gym in the morning and he'd say no so I wouldn't go. This routine went on for awhile. He was my motivation. When he was gone I decided to motivate myself. I read all the fitness magazines I could get my hands on and listened to members at the gym. A lot of trial and error went into my diet and regimen.
I found someone to replace the wife I felt I lost in basketball. My new wife rekindled my fire and love for basketball. Bodybuilding provided the mind, body, and soul connection I needed to be successful in life. Basically, you rely on faith and belief. Bodybuilding helped me have faith that I could accomplish anything,
My grandfather passed away some years later. The family all gathered in his hospital room the day he died. Seeing my grandfather struggle to breathe and fighting to live reinforced my need to live a healthier life. If my grandfather could be strong in his weakest hour, I can be strong every hour of the day.
My future fitness plans are to start my own fitness/sports performance facility and combine my love for fitness and basketball. I'd like to help young people live a healthier life and reach their dreams.
My most important tip is to stay consistent. Be the best you can be; don't try to be like or look like someone else. God created us all unique. Nobody is the same. If you don't risk anything, you risk everything.
My motivation comes from within. I'm motivated to be a better person than I was the day before. Bodybuilding allows me to feel a reward every time I leave the gym. Bodybuilding is a stress reliever and allows me take the high I receive from training and use it in all aspects of my life.
My inspiration comes from the love of my life, Melanie Gates. Her constant belief and support makes me want to be a better man. She believes in me when I don't believe in myself.
The hard work my aunts, grandparents, sister, brother, cousins, and parents showed throughout the years continue to drive me. Bodybuilding.com provides inspiration too. My bodybuilding community is a constant remember of what hard work and dedication can do.
My favorite fitness athletes are Kana Sumabat and Obi Obadike.
Bodybuilding.com has been awesome to help me reach my goals. There isn't a day that doesn't go by where I'm not on the site. The information contained there is so valuable in my quest to be more fit. I love the store, which has the best prices in the industry. The forums, transformation stories, insight into the bodybuilding/fitness industry are all motivational pieces. Lastly, my bodybuilding family and my BodySpace friends support and inspire me to train hard with their encouraging words.
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Congrats to you on your progress, and sure ectomrphs can grow too its just that they have to work harder as all but then again this is what bodybuilding is all about ---hard work and blood sweat and tears.
The comment you made about your arthritic knees and how you worked around that was an inspiration to me because I was just diagnosed wit degenerative disk disease and I have been lifting since I was 15 and now am 44 and thought my lifting days were over but my doctor says to keep doing what im doing to keep my muscles and connective tissues strong. I told my doctor that I do lots of squats and he told me not to stop doing them and keep good form. I was depressed when i found out i had this condition but im working around it and glad im still lifting. congrats again.
Thanks again man. Sumo squats and Sumo dead lifts work great for those with back problems, knee problems. Stay consistent. Instead of giving myself reasons why i can't I give myself reasons why I can.
Tell those mountains of depression they have no right in you! Be gone! You are a victor not a victim my friend
Great job on this man! I am an ectomorph myself...never thought of doing 2 grams of protein for every pound of body weight to help gain mass. I may try it and see what happens for myself.
Thanks historyfreak. I believe it will work just fine for you!
Yeah historyfreak, Im an ecto too and Ive heard this a few times... "2 grams of protein for every pound of body weight". I think they are on to something so lets give it a go and see if it helps us. :)
There are a lot of ectomorphs out there and they have the potential to put on serious mass when being consistent and not giving up. for example Lou Ferrigno was an ectomorph before he started bodybuilding weighing just a little over 100 pounds but just look at him now probably still close to 300 pounds.