It is possible to firm and tone your butt through exercise. The key is to create a balanced workout of strength training to build lean muscle and cardio to reduce any excess fat. Your butt is made up of the gluteal muscles, and a customized workout that targets these muscles will result in a tighter and more toned appearance.
It is possible to tone the gluteal muscles through exercise, but if the muscles are under layers of fat, you will not see the muscle you have worked so hard for. Do an hour of exercise five days a week to start losing inches. The elliptical, stair climber and stationary bike are all good full-body cardio options. The elliptical mimics running without the same impact on your knees, as it has rotating foot pads. The stair climber targets the glutes with an intense workout, but places more impact on the knees. If you have substantial weight to lose, start out with the stationary bike, which supports your weight so you can focus on your legs. Concentrate the force of your workout in your heels as you bike to work your glutes.
Strength Training at the Gym
At the gym create a lower body routine on weight machines with the leg press, leg curl, leg extension, and adductor and abductor machines. Do two sets of 12 repetitions on each machine. These machines work the area from your knees to your glutes to give a tighter appearance. Reducing the size of and toning your thighs will give your butt a lifted appearance naturally. On the leg press, place your feet low on the foot plate to focus the work in your glutes. Choose a weight on these machines that starts low and eases upward; you are at the correct weight when the last repetition is highly challenging but not impossible.
Working Out From Home
It is hard to always make time for the gym, so have a backup plan for a home workout. For cardio consider jumping rope or running outside. Pair this with glute-targeted body-weight exercises such walking lunges, kickbacks and squats. Do each of the body-weight exercises slowly with control to target your glutes; hold them in and contracted.
Safety and Tips
As with any new exercise routine, consult your doctor first, and learn to listen to your body's stress signals. If you are new to exercise, give yourself a break every other day from your strength training as you gain stamina. You will build your endurance by performing cardio at least five but ideally six days a week for quickest results. While exercise will do much for your glutes, healthy eating habits fuel a workout. This also allows you to expend more calories than you are taking in, which is necessary to lose excess weight.
Grace Bordelon is a public relations professional, teacher and writer. She owns her own boutique public relations firm that specializes in the advertising, gaming and software industries. She also teaches at a major design school for fine artists, commercial artists and graphic designers. Bordelon holds a B.A. in international economics and an M.A. in English from Bard College.