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Monday, December 17, 2007

Build Big, Muscular Arms With Workouts That Fit Your Body Type

Whether its human nature or culturally learned behavior, people seem compelled to compare themselves negatively with others who appear to have achieved "success" before they did. These negative comparisons can occur regarding anything from keeping up with a neighbor who's bought a new car to the annoying success of the boor at the bar who somehow keeps scoring new conquests. When it comes to building your "body beautiful," such envy or jealousy can kill your workout motivation.

In your quest for bulging biceps, don't let negative comparisons to others sabotage your determination to achieve this goal. Instead of using other people's bodybuilding achievements to highlight your perceived failure, you should use their success to inspire your own. If you see a friend or someone in the gym whose arms are better than yours, don't pack up your gym bag and quit training simply because he appears to have succeeded before you did. Instead, observe or ask about his training met! hods and see whether there's anything that he's doing that can improve your results.

Better yet, take a step back and ask yourself this question: "Given my arm building goals, are my workouts appropriate for my body type?" Too often, beginning bodybuilders grab a magazine or go to the gym and start mimicking someone else's workouts without ever considering this all important question. But understanding your body type is central to your workout planning and bodybuilding success.

Your Arm Training Must Fit Your Body Type

The key to maximizing your ability to build big, muscular arms is training in manner that fits your body type. In purest terms, the human body comes in three physiological forms: ectomorphic, endomorphic and mesomorphic. An ectomorph is the typical "hard gainer" who has general difficulty in gaining weight, especially muscle mass. Ectomorphs are usually tall with long, lean limbs, narrow shoulders and a relatively fragile bone structure. Ect! omorphs also tend to have a high metabolism that causes the ca! lorie bu rn that can eat into protein stores needed to build muscle after a workout.

Endomorphs are at the opposite end of the body type spectrum. Endomorphs tend to have rounded or "stocky" bodies with a slower metabolism that makes it easy for them to gain muscle. Unfortunately, this slow metabolism also means that endomorphs can get fat very easily. Endomorphs are particularly well-suited for powerlifting movements, but their tendency to hold on to calories makes high-repetition and cardiovascular training critical to their ability to achieve superior muscular shape and definition.

In between the ectomporhic and endomorphic body types is the mesomorph. Mesomorphs tend to have a naturally strong, balanced and athletic physique with an ability to gain and display muscle much more easily than the other body types. Although mesomorphs have a higher metabolism than endomorphs, they don't have the ectomporhic ability to naturally burn calories and must therefore carefully mo! nitor their food intake to avoid getting fat.

While pure ectomorphs, endomorphs and mesomorphs theoretically exist, the reality is that most people have mixed body types (i.e., "ectomorph-mesomorph" or "mesomorph-endomorph"). When it comes to training in a way that best fits your body type, there are subtle but important differences depending on whether you're primarily an ectomorph, endomorph or mesomorph. If you're mostly ectomorphic, you should emphasize low repetition mass building techniques with extended training cycles that minimize cardiovascular exercise.

On the other hand, if you're primarily endormorphic you should emphasize high repetition training cycles with extended intervals that regularly include high intensity interval training sessions. Finally, if you're mostly mesomorphic your arms should respond well to both low and high repetition training with moderate amounts of high intensity cardiovascular training for enhanced muscularity.

The b! ottom line is that you must work with whatever potential you h! ave to b uild the big, muscular arms that you desire. Understanding and tailoring your workouts to fit your body type are essential to achieving this goal.

Mark G. Winston, "The Master Gunslinger," is author of the ground-breaking training manual, "GO For Your GUNS - 7 Simple Secrets to AWESOME ARMS." He has also created, a bodybuilding and fitness website dedicated entirely to helping you build big, muscular arms. Mark's forthcoming book will be jammed with workouts and training techniques to help you build the big, muscular arms that you deserve! To learn about the GO For Your GUNS bodybuilding system and get free arm training tips that really work, visit

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