If a backwards peek in the mirror at your (ahem) assets has you feeling less-than-ready for swimsuit season, never fear! There are simple ways to tone and shape your glutes in a matter of weeks.
Notice I said simple – not easy! As with all workouts, if you’re not sweaty and uncomfortable by the time you’re done, you’re not doing it right. Remember to get excellent nutrition before and after you exercise, and take time to rest 30-60 seconds between sets and 1-2 days between workouts so your body can recover.
For an effective workout routine, the strength-training exercises below should be paired with burst training (i.e. high-intensity interval training) – read more here. Most importantly, always check in with your healthcare provider before starting any exercise to be sure it’s the right fit for your body and needs.
If you need more than the directions below, try Fast Fitness. You’ll get a complete workout program, including 25 videos, workout schedules, and helpful guides. I’ll guide you through everything you need to get fit and toned all over – no gym required! (It’s the same workout I use every day, so I can promise it’s effective…)
Read on for 5 of my favorite tush-training exercises:
The Dreaded Wall-Sit
If your legs start to shake at the mere mention of this move, then you’re not new to the pain (and gain) of this amazing exercise! Start by standing with your back against a wall. Slide your back down the wall until your hips bend to 90 degrees. Keep your shoulders and back of your head against the wall; your feet should be flat on the ground.
Start out at around 20 seconds, then aim to add 2 seconds every training day.
Squats for a Sweet Behind
No glute exercise list would be complete without squats because they work every muscle in your legs, while also strengthening your core. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your back straight; then lower your buttocks towards the ground. The lower you squat, the better, because a low squat puts the emphasis on your glutes and hamstrings. The wider your stance, the more focus you put on your glutes. When squatting, be sure to maintain proper form: keep your legs shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed slightly out.
Do 2-3 sets of 8-12 squats each time, increasing the number and depth of your squats as your training progresses. When it gets easier, add weights for more resistance.
Build a Bridge to a Better Booty
The Butt Bridge is an old glute-training standby for good reason. Simply lie on your back on an exercise mat with your knees bent and your hands at your sides, palms down. Next, lift your glutes up towards the sky, squeezing as you go, until your legs and core form a right-angled triangle with the mat and hold.
Repeat this sequence in 2-3 sets of 8-12 lifts each time, increasing the number and length of lifts as your training progresses. You can also elevate your feet on an exercise ball for added difficulty.
Wonderful Weighted Walking Lunges
This exercise elevates your heart rate, and you will definitely be feeling it the next day! Start with your arms at your sides and a dumbbell in each hand. (Remember, no girly 2-pound weights – don’t let them trick you with the pink dumbbells!) Step forward and lunge, alternating legs with each step. Try to lunge as low as possible, but make sure your front knee never extends past your toes
Do 2-3 sets of 8-12 lunges each time, increasing the dumbbell weight and depth of your lunges as your training progresses.
Step Up to a Better Backside
Forget fancy weight machines – a stairwell is your secret to fabulous legs and glutes! Start with one foot on a bench or step, holding your arms by your sides. Push off your top foot and step up onto the bench (or step) with both feet. Step down onto one foot, keeping the other foot on the bench and repeat.
Do 2-3 sets of 8-12 steps with each leg. When it gets easier, add weights for more resistance.
In the past, thin was in. Thanks to the Kardashians, now it's popular to embrace your curves. But no matter what fashion says, being strong and healthy will always be sexy. Happy flexing!
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