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    Just joined M&S
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    Default Ectomorph guy struggling with gains

    Hi guys.

    My name is Rob and I'm new here, nice to meet you all!

    So basically I've decided to join the forums as I'm not making the desired progress in my workouts and figured I'd seek some advice. I know I'm definitely doing some things wrong but I need to accurately identify which flaws are what and what to do instead/improve going forward.

    So first off, I'm 31 years old and 6ft tall. I've always been quite slim with a typical ectomorph physique and in the past year or so I decided to join the gym, become more active and start making an effort to build some muscle. My current body fat percentage is 20% and after having joined the gym, I decided to focus on bench presses, dumbbell exercises, chest press, the occasional chest fly, press-ups, shoulder exercises with the dumbbells.

    I also changed my diet - I pretty much stopped eating processed foods altogether, fizzy soda drinks (apart from the occasional Diet Coke) and ate more red meat, vegetables, fruit, greek yoghurt and fish such as salmon. Any alcohol consumption I would keep to light beer or clear liquor such as gin.

    I've also begun consuming protein shakes and creatine too (the latter I've only been consuming in the past 7 months or so).

    However, I've only noticed a very slight change in my physique in the past year and I feel I can personally identify why with two things - even though I've changed my diet and have been consuming healthier, more protein-focused foods, my appetite is absolutely terrible. I find it extremely difficult to eat anything when I'm not hungry and I need to get into the mindset of eating more because I know I need to. There have admittedly been some days where I've not eaten anything aside from dinner. I consume a lot of water throughout the day and this might be filling up my stomach before any potential meals perhaps? Secondly, whenever I've been at the gym, I usually start with 20-30 minutes of cardio on the bike just to keep momentum and shed any alcoholic calories had at the weekends. I've recently realised that this might be offsetting any of the gains I could be making? I obviously need to put on more weight to transform it into muscle I guess.

    My desired physique is the same of that of most men I guess - more obviously/clearly defined pectorals and abdominals with broader shoulders and bigger arms. A part of the struggle is probably because I've always been quite slim perhaps (on top of the errors I'm currently making) and I've always naturally had quite a high metabolism I guess.

    Obviously because of the current pandemic and global lockdown, we can't make it out to gyms - I hardly have any space (no real space for anything like effectively executed russian twists for example) or equipment at home at the moment. No bench to lay down on for bench presses - I've just got a pair of dumbbells at 4.5 kg each which are frustrating to use as I feel I've significantly surpassed that weight.

    I'm currently keeping busy with by doing 100 press ups throughout the day (in four sets of 25) and I'm gonna begin the same amount with sit-ups tomorrow.

    I've attached an image of my physique at present to this post - if anyone can provide any advice or general guidance then it would be very much appreciated!

    Thanks guys, hope you're all well and keeping safe!


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