Secrets To Glamorous Glutes!

This week is about the secrets to glamorous glutes. Learn the exercises and things to do to get the sexiest glutes around...
Secrets to Glamorous Glutes!

We all want to be attractive and sexy and as a follow up to last week's article LESS FAT MORE SEX (and to fulfill a promise we made in Week Fourteen when we discussed developing great abs), we devote this week's column to tips on creating glamorous glutes.

Few things about one's anatomy turn heads like a great set of glutes.


Click To Enlarge!
Three of the greatest sets of glutes ever seen are those of Constanze Hohzorn, Tina Rigdon, and Tonya LeClarie (Rigdon and LeClarie photos by Rob Sims). Check out more great buns from Planet Muscles' 2001 sexy buns contest at Click Here!

The problem is that this is the area where women accumulate most of their fat. After all, women are baby machines and nature has designed lower body fat cells to serve as a reservoir of energy for pregnancy and lactation. So when women overeat and don't exercise, they are going to gain a lot of the weight in the hips, butt and thighs.

Diane: As a weight loss consultant, one of the universal problems I see with most clients is that the concept of what constitutes overeating is not understood by many. During a recent vacation, Richard and I heard many confessions on the difficulty with losing weight. And yet pantries remain stocked with a large assortment of junk foods. And for those that leave the junk foods at the grocery store, the delta to glamorous glutes results from hearty foods cooked with large amounts of fat and/or fattening additions of cheese and butter added to normally nutritious foods like vegetables.

So for women, remember that nature will work against you in your efforts to lose in the hips, butt and thighs. Add in hormonal fluctuations and a slower metabolism for the over 40 crowd and the battle becomes a bit more difficult. Just remember...a bit more difficult does not mean impossible. Harder, yes. Impossible, no way! Eat small portions of nutrient dense foods spaced throughout the day and glamorous glutes are well within your reach. Even for us Babyboomers!

While men are not fighting nature in the hips, butt and thighs, men won't have glamorous glutes if they have pinchable love handles. Men do get to ingest more calories than women each day, but men still need to remember the concept of portion size.

Richard: I can't count how many fat rear-ends I've seen in my life and it's getting worse. I'm shocked at the fat thighs and butts I see strolling on stage at beauty and bodybuilding contests I've judged! So it's not just your average sedentary, over-40 babyboomer that is overweight. Believe me, young people today are getting fatter every year. I live in Panama City which boasts the "World's Most Beautiful Beaches," and it amazes me how much "cottage cheese" I see on the legs and huge, saggy rear-ends of even the youngest of the bikini clad vixens roaming the beaches here. We have a major glute crisis in America!

Granted, like all other body parts some people are just gifted with great genetics, but whatever you see coming out of the shower as you look back in the mirror can be improved. {Diane: Believe me…..Baldwin checks his physique out in the mirror daily. And that's what keeps him from eating junk food and his butt looking in competitive shape, even at 55 years of age.} So if you want to build your own pair of glamorous glutes within your genetic limits, read on!

The glutes (butt, buns, ass, tush, rear-end, whatever you personally prefer) primarily consists of the gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus. These muscles are difficult to isolate, and we see very few workout routines that list glutes as a special area of training. Although you actually don't need to worry about isolation to get head-turning results, it is possible with some special workouts and special machines to target this area.

Before we get to those concentrated "glamorous glute" producers, let us give you three major secrets to success:

  • You must eat nutritionally sound meals (read our advice about diet for abs on Week Fourteen)
  • Concentrate on flexing those glutes!
  • Do your cardio.

Putting The Secrets To Work:

Do unilateral movements:
Exercises like lunges and glute kickbacks allow focused concentration and isolated contraction of the glutes.

Flex your glutes during the entire range of motion:
Practice squeezing your glutes throughout the range of movement and I guarantee you will shape those sexy buns!

Now we let you in on the greatest glute shapers you can do without weights or machines:

Leg Lift - View The Exercise
Grabbing the top of a chair back to brace yourself, stand up straight, lift one leg behind you while keeping the other leg straight. Bring the raised leg back to the floor and raise it again for 10 repetitions. Then do the same for the other leg. Three to five sets of these leg lifts, if you are concentrating on flexing the glutes so that you feel them do the work, should begin to tighten and firm these muscles.

Glute Kickbacks - View The Exercise
A variation of the leg lift is the glute kickback. While on the floor on all fours, extend one leg and with the foot cocked to a point that places it in line with the head. Then raise it to a 45-degree angle with the foot elevated above the head. Again, the key to maximum results is to concentrate on contracting the glutes throughout the full range of motion.

The Butt Lift or Bridge - View The Exercise
Lying on your back with your knees bent, lift your hips off the floor while keeping your back straight. Remember to keep your glutes tight!

Here are the greatest glute shapers you can do
with weights or machines:

One-Legged Cable Kickback - View The Exercise
If you have access to a low cable machine, the one-legged cable kickback is a great way to carve shape into those sagging buns. Hook a leather cuff to a low cable pulley and then attach the cuff to your ankle. Face the weight stack from a distance of about two feet, grasping the steel frame for support. While keeping your knees and hips bent slightly and your abs tight, contract your glutes to slowly "kick" the working leg back in a semicircular arc as high as it will comfortably go. At full extension, squeeze your glutes for peak contraction. Bring your working leg forward, resisting the pull of the cable until you reach the starting position. After completing the desired number of reps, switch legs and repeat this movement for the other bun.

The Glute Machines
Many gyms now are equipped with special equipment for isolating the glutes, such as the Mega Glute Blaster. As you can see in the accompanying photo, this is a great way to isolate those beautiful muscles. The great thing about these machines is that you are locked into position so that you can concentrate fully on contracting those muscles.

Lunges - View The Exercise
With your feet about shoulder width apart, using a barbell on your shoulders, a couple of dumbbells in your hands or just a broomstick for balance, move your left foot forward. Keep your knee centered over your foot as you lunge forward on that leg, never letting your knee go further than right over your toes. Push back from the heels as you contract your glutes. Come back to the starting position and repeat for the other leg.

The Stiff-Legged Dead Lift - View The Exercise
Many bodybuilders like this exercise because it really concentrates on the tie-in between the glutes and the hamstrings and thereby adds even more to a nice shape to the glutes. It is performed by picking up a dumbbell or barbell and standing in an upright position. Then bend over without curving the back or bending the knees. You should feel a real stretch of the hamstrings as you lower and raise the weight. Remember to squeeze those glutes!

The Routines

Try all the above exercises and pick two or three of them that really seem to work those glutes. Then work them hard 2-3 days per week for 3-4 sets of 10-12. Variety keeps boredom from interfering with intensity, but once you find the 4 or 5 exercises that you like, rotate those as needed. The point is don't waste time doing exercises you don't like.

Cardio

Unless you are gifted with an incredibly fast metabolism {Diane: like Richard}, you will need to engage in cardiovascular activity. Ask any fitness model which cardio activity helps to keep the fat off the hips, thighs and butt area and you will find a universal answer...running. Just remember, that's running, not jogging! If you are a boomer that's never engaged in running, it's not too late to start. Start slow, with short intervals of jogging and fast walking. As you progress, make the intervals longer. Work up to a comfortable jog speed for a few miles. Once the jogging goal is met, add in some short intervals of running, then longer intervals. After some time, you'll find yourself running and enjoying the large amount of calories burned in a relatively short amount of time.

For those with joint problems that make running an impossible task, try setting the incline on a treadmill and walk uphill. For gym quality treadmills, you'll want to work up to a goal of 3.0-3.5 miles per hour, at an incline of 75-100% of maximum. Now, here's a trick I learned from 40 year old, Team Universe winner, Skip LaCour. Squeeze your buns while climbing that hill. Don't hold the rails. Trust me, this is a killer workout.

Spinning classes with a demanding instructor will also provide a great caloric burn in a short amount of time. When out of the saddle, keep your butt low, just above the seat. And once again...squeeze your buns!

Find a Photo that Inspires You

Nothing keeps us more determined to progress than finding inspirational photos. If you are female and want great buns, take a great photo like the one on the right by Neveux of Debbie Kruck and stick it to the mirror in your bathroom so that you see it every morning and evening when you brush your teeth. Burn in your mind a picture of the glutes you want!

Richard: Some of you may be thinking, why haven't you suggested squats and leg presses? Given that the glutes are very involved in those movements, why have we left those out? Because they cause the gluteus medius to become overdeveloped resulting in a square ass rather than a nice round one. That's okay for your guys out there, but my personal preference is for round, female-looking glutes rather than square male-looking glutes. I hate female butts that look like a guy's butt. For instance, check out these photos below of some female bodybuilders butts and contrast them with those glorious glutes above. Need I say more?

Diane: Others may be saying, "What about the guys?" Believe me, some guys' butts are looking pretty grim these days too. For instance, this guy needs to lose a lot of weight AND work his butt hard:

Then there's the "flat-butt" look? A friend of mine forced her boyfriend to start doing squats because he had NO butt to speak of. I suggested he squat since he needed some glutes FAST. It worked, but I just would not suggest deep squats or leg presses with emphasis on the glutes. In fact, I would suggest concentrating on isolating the quadriceps since these are great thigh builders.

Well, there you have it. This should set you on your way to Glamorous Glutes!

Don't forget to send us your before and after pictures so we can share your success with our readers! Click here to e-mail us your legendary babyboomer physique photos. If you would like to sign up for our weekly newsletter, click here.

Next Week: We share more success stories from our readers.

Richard and Diane

Train hard, train smart and make it a legendary week!
Diane Fields, Member. Legendary Fitness, LLC.
Richard Baldwin, Member. Legendary Physique, LLC.


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Copyright 2004. Diane Fields, Member. Legendary Fitness, LLC. All rights reserved.

The advice given in this column should not be viewed as a substitute for professional medical services. Before undertaking any exercise or nutrition program, Legendary Fitness, LLC advises all to undergo a thorough medical examination and get permission from their personal physician.