Workouts to Transform a Pear Shape Into an Hourglass

Healthy eating, cardio and strength workouts will help you achieve an hourglass shape.
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People with pear-shaped bodies tend to store body fat on their hips, buttocks and thighs. Pear shapes usually have a little fat around the waist, too, but not as much as the rounder apple-shaped body. Fat on your thighs, hips and butt can be difficult to lose, but with exercise and a healthy diet you can slim your lower body, lose weigh all over and achieve an hourglass figure.

Health Risks

Belly fat carries a number of serious health risks, such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Pear-shaped people with fat on the lower body are at less risk of these diseases. In fact, fat on the hips and thighs may help reduce your risk of heart disease. According to researchers at Oxford University, fat on the thighs helps to trap fatty acids that would otherwise be deposited in and around your internal organs. Pear-shaped women may be at greater risk of eating disorders, according to Marie Savad, a trustee and member of the Board of Overseers for Penn Nursing at Penn State University.

Cardio Workout

Cardio exercise combined with a healthy diet can help you lose weight all over your body, including your hips, thighs and butt. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends at least 150 minutes, or 30 minutes five days a week, of cardio activity at a moderate level. Cardio is any exercise that increases your heart rate and makes you sweat. Brisk walking is one of the easiest ways to exercise for weight loss. Other cardio exercises include aerobics, jogging, riding a bicycle and exercising on an elliptical machine. If you are a beginner, try low-impact exercises, such as walking, rowing or stair climbing. Warm up before you begin your cardio routine, and drink water to stay hydrated. Check with your doctor before starting any exercise program, especially if you have been sedentary or exercise infrequently.

Toning Workouts

Toning exercises help to firm up your muscles. You should do muscle toning exercises in addition to cardio for weight loss. You can concentrate your efforts on your hips, buttocks and thighs, but do some upper body toning exercises, too. Do toning and strengthening exercises three times each week on nonconsecutive days. Squats, side plank, step-ups, hip lift on stability and toe-touch crunches will tone and strengthen your abs, hips, thighs and buttocks. Lunges tone your thighs and butt while helping you to burn calories. Start out with 10 to 12 repetitions of each exercise. Increase the repetitions or sets or add weight to keep challenging your body to adapt and grow stronger.

Diet and Nutrition

The best way to lose weight and keep it off is to combine regular physical activity with reduced calories. According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, you need to reduce your caloric intake by 500 to 1,000 calories a day to achieve a healthy weight loss of one or two pounds a week. You still need to eat a healthy diet when you cut back on calories. Healthy carbohydrates, such as whole grains, beans and rice, should be a part of your diet. Include protein from fresh vegetables, lean meats and poultry. Reduce the amount of sugar in your diet by avoiding soda in favor of water, tea and fresh fruits. Avoid processed convenience food and fast food, too.

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