I've lurked many sites for years now and this forum seems to be the most active and impressive that I've seen. Lots of great info so I figured it was time to register.
I'm an ectomorph and your typical hardgainer, though ironically what I've always considered a detriment to putting on lean mass, it works to my favor aesthetically since I weight train mostly for my self-esteem and self-defense. I'm 29 years old and about 5'8 165 lbs. I've been lifting for 7 years although there were a few long "breaks" in between. Good thing muscle memory comes easy for me...in 8 weeks I can regain 80% of my lost muscle. I don't have practically any visible fat on me. As recently as 22 years old I weighed only 125 lbs and so I've gained 40 lbs in 7 years, all muscle. I'm part asian so I inherited a slim frame and very high metabolism. If I absolutely stop lifting, over a year I can regress down to about 135 lbs which is what I think my "base" weight is. Ugh, makes me ill thinking about it! I always hated being skinny!
My favorite bodybuilder of all time who I think had the perfect body was Frank Zane. His symmetry and aesthetics were simply awesome. Combined with an ecto-mesomorph frame, he's a realistic model to look up to for me.
I was in the military for several years, but I'm now working in the IT industry. I have a bachelors in information systems. My weight-training goal is to get up to 175 lbs which I believe is my perfect weight that would look absolutely ripped and huge on a frame like mine. This would be accomplished now simply by my legs catching up with my upper body -- shame on me for neglecting them until last year! I always hated training legs, but now with the quad separation and continual new gains I'm making, I love training legs! I just wish I had a bigger bone structure because squats repeatedly put out my back to the point I can't even pick up a bag of groceries! I have to do hack squats and heavy leg presses to try and compensate.
Lastly, I train 6 days a week average 2.5 hour sessions and supplement with creatine and various protein supplements daily over the last several years. I just started to take glutamine powder in between my 6 meals a day to see if I can speed up recovery to squeeze more sessions in per week.
Anyways, I love lifting weights and seeing my body improve. I love "the pump" I feel and the satisfaction for 2 to 3 hour workouts in the gym. I look forward to lifting for the rest of my life. Thanks for the nice forums!