In my line of work, the most common question I get is, “How do I lose weight?” A close second isn’t so much a question as it is a statement, “I want a nice butt!” (Seriously, like, an everyday question... no joke)
Ahh, the majestic "squat booty.” Widely sought-after and generally considered unattainable without the gift of bootylicious genetics. The CrossFit world loves to tease all the “small” girls out there with the term, “cardio booty” and clever sayings like, “Squat... because no one ever wrote a song about a small butt.”
It’s true; fit is the new skinny. For decades, society has been confusing size with health and convinced countless women that being skinny is not only healthy but more attractive. It’s a dangerous way of thinking because, often, skinny people are dealing with the same health issues as obese people. Without the outward symptom of weight gain, they might go years without discovering internal health problems! Also, skinny people (especially the cardio addicts) tend to have weaker muscles and less bone density, which is also quite dangerous for day to day life.
Where was I going with this?! Oh yeah, nice butts... seamless transition!
The nicer booty question almost always comes up with female clients. But the truth is, both men and women could benefit from improving the strength and composition of the old gluteus maximus. (Oh, and the medius and minimus too!)
Rather than get into the nitty-gritty science behind all of this, I’ve decided to throw together a booty specific training and nutrition protocol and share it with you here. Short, simple, to the point and Sir Mix A Lot approved...
*A quick note about this workout... I’m certain it’s not what you were expecting from this article. I watch countless women in the gym doing brutal bodybuilding-style workouts like 8 sets of 15-20 reps trying to work their glutes. They’re torturing themselves for no reason. If you want the curvy, sexy, look you’re going for, all you need is a quick, effective, workout. Keyword being, effective. I want to be clear, Length of time spent in the gym has no correlation with real results. I'm ready for comments from women saying, “I did long bodybuilding workouts, and I lost 15 pounds in 1 year, and have a nice butt.” That's great, and I applaud the effort! But in 1 year’s time, they achieved results that could have happened inside of 6 weeks. If you want average results— like everyone else— keep eating and training like everyone else. But I digress... on to the workout!
Watch the videos included below and practice them slowly, with no weight, until you feel confident enough to give this protocol a shot. I would recommend this 2-3 times a week, depending on the weight of your kettlebell swings.
Booty Building Workout:
1. Two-legged glute activation raises - 1 set of 20 reps
* Check out the Glute Activation video and complete 5-6 of the single leg lifts each side. THEN do your twenty double legs
2. Flying Dog - 15 each side
* Be slow and methodical with these. Squeeze like mad at the top of the motion
* Did I mention; be slow and methodical with these?! Good.
3. Kettle Bell Swings - 75 reps
* Your goal here is to be able to complete 75 continuous reps as one set. That probably won’t happen in the beginning.
* I recommend at least a 25-pound kettlebell as a starting point. Even
if you have to break it up into 10 sets to eventually hit 75 reps with a bunch of rest in between, I don’t mind. Tiny kettlebells, like 15 pounds let’s say, will not build your booty muscles. Plus, a weight that is too light makes it easier to use improper form. Your arms will take over, and you will not engage your glutes at all. The power comes from your glutes, hips, and abs, your arms shouldn’t be involved at all. You're not lifting with the arms, you’re just controlling the momentum of the swing.
* STUDY THIS VIDEO! The form is CRUCIAL, and countless people do these incorrectly.
That’s it! Shouldn’t take you more than 15 minutes. Maybe in the beginning, if you need a lot of rest to complete your kettlebell swings, but total time will decrease as you become more familiar with the exercises.
Remember, when the goal is muscle growth, nutrition is king. Some simple rules to follow:
1 gram of protein per pound of body weight each day. Keep your carbs under 50 net grams per day!
Do those two things while following this training protocol and you’ll burn fat and build muscle. AKA - Build a better butt!