Work With Your Body Type: Ruler Shape
The last body type we are going to discuss in this four part series is the ruler shape. Many women that have a ruler shape dislike their bodies because they lack muscle definition, have a small chest and butt, and also tend to show weight gain more than the other body types. However, with some simple changes in diet and exercise, those rulers will be showing off their bodies.
Ruler shapes are similar to hourglass shapes in that their bodies are well proportioned. However, ruler shapes are not tapered in the middle, they tend to have no significant difference between their chests, hips, and waist measurements. Skinny rulers are typically seen as runway and fashion models.
However, this body type tends to gain weight in the stomach and back area of the body. Ruler shapes also have a tougher time hiding weight gain than the other body types because of where the fat is stored. The interesting thing about this body type is that it carries less scale weight than the other body types — this is because they tend to have lower muscle mass overall.
So How Do We Shape A Ruler?
The great thing about ruler shapes is that you can pretty much perform any activity that you would like to. Ruler shapes tend to be flexible and athletic. Because the weight comes off more easily than the other body types, rulers do not need to work out as often as the other bodies types. Cardio sessions should be performed at least four times a week, along with three days of strength training.
If you look at marathon runners you will see many ruler shapes, this body is built for endurance sports. However, when they are looking to lose the weight it is important for ruler shapes do both endurance and interval training. This will help challenge the body in a different way, which will in turn fire up that metabolism.
Here are some examples of interval training:
• Warm-up for 10 minutes on the treadmill at a jog. Sprint for 1 minute, then jog for 1 minute. Next sprint for 2 minutes and come back to the jog for 1 minute. Third, sprint for 3 minutes and jog for 1 minute. Then repeat backwards. Sprint once for 3 minutes, jog for 1 minute. Next the 2 minute sprint followed by a 1 minute jog. Finish with a 1 minute sprint. Then cool down at a moderate pace for 5 minutes.
• On a spin bike warm-up for 10 minutes at a moderate pace. After the 10 minutes pick up your pace for 2 minutes to 80 to 90% exertion. Then sprint, all out, for 30 seconds. Then come back to a recovery pace for 1 minute. Repeat 3 times. After you repeat that three times do some sprint intervals for 5 minutes. Have enough resistance on so that you are in control of the bike. Then sprint all out for 30 seconds, followed by a 30 second recovery. Keep going for 5 minutes. After you are done with sprint intervals come back to a moderate pace with moderate resistance and spin for 10 minutes. Cool down.
If you get bored sprinting on a flat surface, then change your sprints to sprints on a hill to get even more of a calorie burn. This will also help tone your butt. These two interval workouts can be transferred to other types of cardio equipment as well.
What Type Of Strength Training Is Best For Rulers?
Rulers have the luxury of looking good in so many different clothes and outfits. They can walk into any store and try on whatever looks good, and it fits! Other shapes, like hourglass figures, have to find certain jeans or just the right tops to help slim out their curves. However, the one thing ruler shapes lack is muscle.
Areas that rulers need to focus on are their abdominals, glutes, arms, back, and legs. Strength training should be done three times a week with a rest in between. Ruler shapes should aim for 10 repetitions and three sets of each exercise. I recommend super setting an upper body move with a lower body exercise, allowing limited breaks between sets.
Here are some sample exercises:
• Reverse Lunges with Barbell – Start with feet shoulder width apart. Place a barbell behind your neck and have it rest on your shoulders. Choose a weight that challenges you to finish 3 sets of 10 repetitions. When ready, keep abdominal muscles tight and bring your left leg back, dropping that knee close to the ground. Your front knee should be bent to 90 degrees. Then push through your front heel to return your left foot to start. Repeat.
• Hand Tap Push-Up – Get into a push-up position. Hands should be slightly wider than shoulder width apart with a flat back. Bend at the elbows, allowing your body to drop towards the floor and then push up to starting point. When at top, tap your right hand with your left hand and then do another push-up. Keep switching the hand you touch when you come up. Also, maintain a quick pace when doing the push-ups.
• Push Press – Hold a barbell slightly wider then shoulder width apart. Start with bar at shoulder height. Dip body by bending the knees, hips and ankles slightly. Explosively drive upward with the legs, and push the barbell above the head. Return to shoulders and repeat.
• One-Legged Box Squat – Stand with back facing box or bench. Take a couple of small steps forward. Stand on one leg and bend the standing leg at the knee and hips, allowing your butt to reach back towards the box. When it touches ever so slightly, stand back up. Do not let your opposite leg touch the floor through the whole set of 10 repetitions. Repeat on other leg.
• One Arm Seated Row – Sit on bench facing cable machine. Place feet on blocks and grab single hand attachment with your right hand. Slide back so your knees are at a 45-degree angle and your upper body is perpendicular to the bench. With your left arm behind your back, pull the cable towards your body, really squeezing with your right shoulder blade. Your elbow should be by your side. Then release keeping your upper body still. Repeat 10 times and switch.
How About Nutrition?
Rulers are very fortunate because they can lose the weight as easily as they put it on. Because this shape has a hard time gaining lean muscle mass, it is important to eat lean proteins and eliminate starchy flours, fried foods, and sugars.
Foods that are good in omega 3s are very important for rulers because they allow the body to release stored fat to be metabolized. Examples of these foods are wild salmon, flax seed oil, avocados, nuts, olive oils, and halibut. Remember when eating nuts and avocados that portions sizes are important. Too much of anything can hurt that waistline.
Lastly, rulers need to have a small amount of complex carbs at each meal. This will help keep your body full and energized. Fruits and vegetables are a great source, as are quinoa and brown rice. Just remember to drink lots of water throughout the day so you can stay hydrated.
Every body type is different and has to be treated individually. The first step in achieving your goals of having a better body comes from realizing what body shape you are and how to work with it. With a couple changes in diet and the proper workout routine you will be on your way to the body you desire!