Lately it seems that everyone is working for the coveted round and lifted booty. Every other week there is some type of squat challenge to tighten up your tail. But even if you work your glutes a few times a week, you may not be seeing any progress. Rather than giving up your tight buns for cinnamon buns, try switching up your typical glute routine by adding in this StepMill glute-sculpting workout. This workout is great because you will be performing cardio that also sculpts your glutes, if performed properly. All you need is the StairMaster/StepMill in your gym. This is the machine that looks like an escalator, not the one that has the foot pedals on it.
The workout listed below is an intermediate training program. If you feel that this routine is too challenging, decrease the intensity. If it seems too easy, increase the intensity.
In the warm up and cool down you walk up each step as if you were walking up a flight of stairs.
Double Step -- Skip a stair each step and alternate legs. This will help to tone and lift underneath your glutes and hamstrings. Be sure to push up through your heel to keep focus off the quadriceps.
Kick Back -- Keeping your posture tall, place palms on the side rails for balance and kick back your right leg and hold at the top for one second. Then step up and alternate to kick back with your left leg and step up. If the speed is too quick to perform the kickback with good form, drop the level until you are comfortable. Be sure to keep your leg straight and do not arch your back. You should feel the contraction in your glutes, not in your back. Be sure to not kick your leg back as high as possible -- that is not the goal. Instead, concentrate on full contraction of your glute muscle at the top.
Single Step -- During this portion, you simply climb each step as if you were walking up a flight of stairs. Try to keep your hands by your side for more of a challenge. Your quads should begin to burn near the end of the two minutes.
Diagonal Kick Back -- Rather than kicking you leg straight back, you will move your leg out to more of a diagonal. This will work on your glutes and the abductor muscles. Control and squeeze at the top of this movement. Focus on keeping your upper body tall. The movement needs to be focused on the lower body.
Fitness Tip -- Are you holding on to the side rails? Then stop cheating! Many people tend to hunch over and hold on for dear life on the StairMaster. This somewhat defeats the purpose, because they are helping themselves by taking pressure off of their legs and holding themselves up with their upper body. The rails should be used for balance. If you don't hold onto the rails, you will work on core strength and stability. As you get more comfortable on the StairMaster, bring your hands to your sides or clasp them behind you. Begin practicing this at level two or three and move up a level as you feel more comfortable. When going faster, place your palms on the rails for stability, but do not pull yourself up with your arms. The rails are there to stabilize -- not assist in the workout. Make sure your legs are doing all of the work. Be cautious and begin slowly as this is an advanced move.
You should be dripping sweat at the end of this workout. If not, then challenge yourself even more by increasing the levels or the duration of the workout. If you are trying to make some changes to your body composition be consistent, work hard and have patience. It will all be worth it.
For more by Angeles Burke, click here.
For more on fitness and exercise, click here.