bodybuilding for ectomorphs

Top 10 Bodybuilding Tips for HardGainers

For someone struggling with weight loss, ectomorph body type is a dream. Blessed with a small bone size, long limbs, ectomorphs scarcely put on weight, as they have a super-efficient metabolism that burns extra calories without a fuss. However, there is a twist in the story, when they pursue bodybuilding dreams. Building muscle for the hard gainers is difficult, as their super-efficient metabolism works against them, but with a plan, in place, they can overcome the challenges.

  1. How hard gainers can build muscle
  2. Hard gainer workout routine
  3. Hard gainer muscle building eating plan

As compared to mesomorphs and endomorphs, hard gainers have to struggle at each step of bodybuilding. Should they give up the pursuit of muscles? Of course not, MuscleBlaze has a plan in place for hard gainer muscle building, which will help the thin and lanky guys make friends with their active metabolism to build muscles.


Muscle building for hard gainers, like any other body type, will revolve around the three parameters of eating, sleeping and exercising right. You will require the strength to push the limits and train harder, along with eating clean. In order to gain muscles, ectomorphs or hard gainers should remain in a calorie surplus situation, avoid cardio and emphasize on protein and fat intake. A high-quality mass gainer enables them to easily get enough calories along with quality nutrients.


In order to qualify as a hard gainer, you must have trained regularly for 6 months without any noticeable change. Life is difficult for such people because they continue to train month after month, without any result.

The 5 basic steps of a hard gainer workout routine include:

1.         Progressive overload to build muscles

When ectomorphs include progressive overload to train their muscles, they challenge muscle fibres to grow gradually so that they adapt to the exposed stress, recover from the effect and grow stronger. When the muscles grow bigger and firmer, they are challenged with increased weights during the resistance training. The keyword here is gradual. The whole process works to adapt the body to the challenges rather than pushing it through the heaviest set in one go because then the body will be unable to adapt.

2.        Train with heavier weights

Training for a hard gainer involves choosing heavier weights vis-à-vis lighter weights. You should keep your reps in the range of 5-10. To build muscles, you’ve to tackle heavier weights eventually, but it has to be done gradually. Ectomorphs need to go slow because if they are pushed with heavy weights right from the start, their body will not adapt to the stress accordingly.  Hence they need to start with lower weights but more volume. This will enable their body to grow in the muscle size. As their body adapts, they can move to heavier weights.

For them, the rep range remains 5-10, but not the stocky sets of 5-5-5 or 10-10-10 rather, pyramid style, 8-5-3 so that they do not overwork their muscles. 

3.      Do compound lifts

What’s the best workout for a hard gainer?  In the ectomorph bodybuilding routine, compound lifts are more important than isolation exercises, like dumbbell curls. Do compound lifts, as these exercises use of more than one major muscle group at a time, whereas isolation exercises engage only one muscle group. Since compound exercise recruits a larger muscle group primarily and smaller muscle groups secondarily during lifts, it boosts the production of testosterone hormone. The best exercises for you are squats, deadlifts, pull-ups, dips, rows, bench press.

4.       No cardio for hard gainers

Cardio is to enhance fat burn, but the ectomorphs need not worry about it because it’s least of their concern. Therefore, hard gainers can safely avoid cardio.

5.       Rest longer

Ectomorphs need to rest longer during their training sets. They need to aim at 2-5 minutes of rest to allow their nervous system to recover from the stress of training. Moreover, resting longer with lower reps maximizes the supply of testosterone, the muscle-building hormone in the bloodstream for bigger muscles.


The fundamental principle of hard gainer nutrition is to know how to eat for maximum muscle growth. Gaining weight requires a plan and the eagerness to stick to it with dedication. Start with writing down your meal plan that you will never deviate from. Ideally, you should eat every 2 to 3 hours. Your first meal should be immediately after waking up and your last meal will include protein-rich foods at bedtime.  5 easy hard gainer muscle building tips involve:

6.       Get in a calorie surplus

While the workout is just one aspect of building muscles, nutrition is another more significant aspect. A diet error takes you two steps backwards in muscle building. Nutrition for ectomorphs requires to stay in a calorie surplus situation.  Ideally, 500 calories and above is a good target. In a week it will result in a pound (0.453g) of weight gain, but the problem with most ectomorphs is that their superfast metabolism will burn this surplus quickly.

7.          Eat enough proteins for muscle building

The science is simple. Your muscle tissues are composed of protein and you need to get in a positive nitrogen balance to fuel your muscle growth. In a hard gainer nutritional plan, half of the plate should be made of proteins. You can figure out your protein need by converting your weight in pounds (453g = 1 pound). You need to eat proteins, double your body weight in pounds in a day.  (For a 100 pound, or 45 kg man, the protein consumption should be 200g in a day)

8.         Get ample carbs to build muscles faster

Daily you should consume 60 to 80g of complex carbohydrates at every meal. You should understand that adding fast food, processed food as sources of carbohydrates would not be the correct idea.  You can get a healthy option by choosing low-glycemic, high-fibre carbohydrates instead of moving towards junk food.  Good sources of muscle building carbohydrates are beans, oatmeal, potatoes, pasta, barley, whole-grains. Carbohydrates not only provide you energy but also pump your muscles, somewhat similar to creatine.

9.         Get good fats

It’s critical to maintain your testosterone levels. Aim to get a good helping of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, as they are critical for maintaining a healthy testosterone level.

10.           Drink your calories

Mass Gainer is a must-have supplement for a hard gainer, as it enables you to get premium nutrition without much fuss. All you need to do is to mix powder and water together, to get in a calorie-surplus situation. Most importantly, it provides you measured calories, so you know exactly, how much extra you are having in a day. Get quality nutrition with MuscleBlaze Mass Gainer XXL and meet your calorie needs.

Start slow and give your body time to adjust to extra calories. You do not want to jolt your body by doubling your calorie intake. Most probably, your body will refuse to absorb the additional foods and you too will get tired during the process. Go slow and steady, because bodybuilding requires patience and perseverance.