Ever notice how all of those overpriced workout programs on early-morning infomercials market exclusively to men? Sure, they have a smattering of female testimonials, but unless you want to look like a sinewy, bronzed figure competitor, you’re not buying it. So what do women want? A physique lost somewhere between bodybuilders and emaciated fashion models. Women want curves: long, sexy legs, a lifted butt, a narrow waist and perky boobs. A customized workout routine, and of course a healthy diet, deliver the feminine body you want.
Spot training doesn’t work, right? That depends on who you ask. According to research published in “The International Journal of Obesity” in 2008, researchers observed women over 15 weeks in a high-intensity interval training program. Of course they lost fat overall, but surprisingly, they lost the most fat from their legs and stomach. Make interval training the foundation of your training program with three workouts a week of 30 minutes each. After a three- to five-minute warmup, work as hard as you can for one minute, followed by two minutes of recovery. Repeat for the duration of your workout.
While you’re losing fat off your legs, sculpt them with exercises that isolate the individual muscles, particularly the back of your legs where your thigh meets your butt, indelicately referred to as your “thut.” For your hamstrings, perform stability ball hamstring curls by lying on your back with your legs straight and your heels on a fitness ball, then roll the ball toward you as you bend your knees for 10 repetitions. Isolate your glutes with quadruped leg lifts, which target the gluteus maximus of your working leg and your gluteus medius and minimus of the supporting leg. Perform them on your hands and knees by lifting one leg behind you with your foot facing the ceiling for 30 reps. To finish, do a one-legged squat against a wall and hold for 30 seconds on each side.
Pilates tends to whittle the prettiest waistlines because it encourages you to draw in your abdominal muscles during each move. To practice drawing in, imagine someone is punching you in the gut and you’re trying to pull your belly button toward your spine so they can’t reach you. Unfortunately, you can’t escape the pain of a superset of Pilates ab exercises. Try the one-hundred, single leg stretch, double straight leg stretch and the criss-cross.
Your boobs are mostly fat. But don’t worry, your secret’s safe here. To keep them looking up, tone the muscles underneath that support them, namely your pecs. Your breasts are round -- well, ideally -- so your chest exercises should approach your pecs from multiple angles. In addition to the basic bench press, do pec flyes and chest pullovers. Chose very heavy weights -- and definitely a spotter -- so you can complete only eight to 10 repetitions. This gives you increased muscle size, a little boost for small-breasted women.
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