Sprinting is high-intensity exercise that requires intervals of rest between sprints. It burns a lot of calories in a relatively short time and improves your cardiovascular system while toning your core, butt and legs. Sprinting can get you on your way to losing fat from your waist and shaping your butt, but knowing the possibilities and limitations of sprinting will allow you to supplement it with other forms of exercise to achieve your desired results.
Targeting Fat Loss
There is nothing you can do that will spot-reduce fat on your body. A "Yale Scientific Magazine" points to a 2007 study done at the University of Connecticut where MRI's measured the fat of 104 participants before and a regimen of exercising one arm. It was found that fat loss was not more in the arm. Fat loss occurs whenever the amount of calories you've burned in a day exceed the amount of calories consumed. Where fat loss will occur first depends on genetics, gender and age. That is not to say that sprinting will not reduce waist fat, but it may not be lost before other parts of your body lose fat first.
A Bigger Butt
Sprinting will tone your butt and give it a 'lift' which could make it appear larger, but cardio generally does promote muscles growth. Running uphill will isolate muscles of the butt more, but weight-resistance using six to 10 reps and three sets of each exercise is better suited for muscle growth. Squats, lunges and step-ups will isolate the glutes effectively. Avoid crash dieting and too much cardio if your goal is a bigger butt. The body uses muscle for fuel if there aren't enough calories available.
If slimming your waist is your goal, high-intensity exercises like sprinting will burn calories faster than slower paced workouts and without using up all your time. Exercise researcher David Nieman and collegues from Appalachian State University in Kannapolis, N.C. found that men who biked intensely on a stationary machine for 45 minutes burned 190 more calories after their workout than participants who biked slower. Nieman suggests your workout be challenging enough "so you're sweating, your body temperature is up and your heart beats fast."
Sprinting is for experienced joggers or gym-enthusiasts. It requires a warm-up of at least 10 minutes. Light jogging and dynamic stretching, such as squats and lunges, that targets the glutes and legs will prepare you. Do sprints in intervals and complete the workout by "feel" rather than time. Sprint until exhaustion and recover until your breathing is almost normal. Experienced sprinters should be able to sprint 20-30 seconds until tiring. Take days off between sprint workouts -- sprinting can wear on the joints and muscles, these need time to heal to avoid injury.
Matthew Demers is a certified personal trainer based in Windsor, Canada. He is also the co-founder of YourSpace Fitness.