You see them in every the gym, coasting on the treadmill, never breaking a sweat and probably reading a magazine too. But this time, slow and steady doesn’t win the race! In order to counteract thrifty genes, burn a maximal amount of calories and kick your metabolism into higher gear endomorphs should aim to do moderate to high intensity exercise. The fat burning zone isn’t going to achieve those goals.

Kicking your workout up a notch will also help you make exercising a part of your lifestyle as studies suggest that people end up throwing in the towel, in part, due to overly long, time consuming workouts. In other words keep it shortish, intense and sweet.

Achieve as much as you can in as little time as is reasonable. You needn’t devote a whole afternoon to exercise. Intense exercise confers several benefits that lower intensity exercise either cannot or is unable to match to the same degree:

  • Suppressed appetite. Intensive exercise curbs appetite. Lower intensity exercise doesn’t and may even increase the desire for food.
  • Increased muscle mass. Intense exercise sessions are more likely to increase muscle mass than endurance cardio, which tends to reduce muscle mass.
  • Increases metabolic rate. Intense exercise produces a significantly greater “afterburn” than lower-intensity exercise. Metabolism remains elevated until the following day.

An endomorph’s cardio workout strategy consists of:

  1. Long-duration steady-state exercise at moderate intensity
  2. Interval training (IT)

Striking a balance between interval training and steady state workouts is ideal for endomorphs, as they will test your heart, lungs, musculature and energy systems in different ways. This will result in faster weight loss, a lower risk of hitting a weight loss plateau, minimal muscle loss and superior fitness.

Moderate-intensity, steady-state cardio

To exercise at moderate to high level intensity aim for around 70 – 80% of maximum heart rate, exercising for 45 – 60 minutes. It’s an intensity that allows you to talk only in short spurts of three or four words at a time. You should break into a sweat after at least 10 minutes and keep sweating for the entire hour.

If you haven’t exercised for a considerable period, start at about 60% MHR and increase the intensity as your athletic ability improves.

What you consider moderate intensity in your first week, you’ll be laughing off as easy in a few short weeks. As you grow stronger, week by week, your workouts will get easier and will no longer feel as tough.

So to keep on losing weight and increasing fitness levels, keep making your workouts a little harder. This means incrementally increasing the length or your workout, your pace or the resistance/ incline as you get more fit.

Level/ Intensity Heart Rate Calories Burned per min Example Breathing Sweating
Easy/ Low < 65% max HR 3-5 Walking Breathing normal, able to carry on conversation No
Moderate 65-80% max HR 6-10 Jogging Breathing deep, can talk in bursts After approx. 10 minutes
Difficult/ High + 80% max HR 11-15 Sprinting Breathing fast and deep, difficult to talk After approx 3-5 minutes

Interval training

Constant pace cardio workouts increase metabolism for several hours afterwards. However, it’s not as effective as high intensity interval training (HIIT), which increases the resting metabolic rate (RMR) for many more hours following exercise. A boon for endomorphs.

Research shows that strenuous exercise can raise resting metabolic rate for up to 38 hours after your workout, burning a massive 180 extra calories in this post-exercise period. This effect strongest in the first 12 hours after exercising.

HIIT is also brilliant at preserving muscle mass while simultaneously burning fat. Unlike long constant-pace cardio, HIIT involves exercising at maximum intensity for a shorter period of time. It substantially cuts down the amount of time you need to exercise because HIIT sessions are short and intense.

High intensity interval training is taxing and thus not suitable for beginners. Beginners can start with regular interval training (e.g. run/ walk plan) and build up their cardiovascular fitness and strength, before adopting HIIT. As HIIT is very strenuous, check with your doctor before you start, especially if you haven’t exercised for a long time or are have any medical conditions.  

Endomorph Workout Plan – How Hard? was last modified: November 18th, 2017 by the team