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Cellulite: Why We Have It – and How to Get Rid of It

One of my facebook friends, Patti, asked me a great question this week. She asked “Is there any REAL help for cellulite dimples? Bought some smaller shorts today :), but now, there’s that cellulite!!!”

I’ve got good news – I DO have an answer! Here it goes!

celluliteMy answer isn’t a cream, nor is it a complicated surgical procedure. My solution is something that has been around for years – diet and exercise. Surprised?

You see, I don’t believe the issue is always the lumpy fat we call cellulite. I think the problem due to the amount of body fat we gain, as well as the muscle we lose. The unfortunate combination can leave skin loose and lumpy. Cellulite can also be a problem after losing weight because the weight loss leaves our skin loose, and many times people lose muscle if they aren’t working out or getting enough protein.

“What causes cellulite?”

celluliteLet’s look at the facts. Women, who do not exercise, lose an average of 5 pounds of muscle per decade before menopause and up to a pound a year thereafter. Since cellulite is more common for women, this causes a couple of problems.

Each pound of lean muscle lost decreases your metabolism, making it easier to gain weight. If you already have a problem with cellulite, the slowing metabolism will only make matters worse. Weight gain causes the cellulite to be more pronounced as the fat cells grow.

If that wasn’t bad enough, the firm muscle that once supported the skin and fat is now shrinking. Lumpy fat cells are growing, and smooth firm muscle is withering away. Have I scared you into working out yet? I’ll try harder! 🙂

Although diet and exercise may not get rid of all the cellulite in the world, it can make a HUGE difference. A low-calorie diet can reduce and manage overall body fat, affecting the size and visibility of cellulite. Exercise can preserve and increase lean muscle mass, which can prevent, and even reverse, a lot of the problems.

“I gain muscle too easily so I don’t like to lift heavy weights because it just makes me bigger than I already am”.

strong legsBuilding lean muscle not only increases your metabolism to help fight weight gain, but it builds firm shapely muscle to support our aging skin. The problem is, many women who already feel like they are already too thick, are scared to lift heavy in fear of appearing bigger. This fear often keeps them away from the very thing they need most – weights.

Resistance exercise is not what makes people look thick, DIET is what makes people look thick. If you want to trim down your thighs or waistline, you have to reduce calories. If you don’t, you will just be a more fit version of the thick you. Unfortunately, many women start lifting weights, which builds much needed muscle, but they keep the same amount of body fat (because they aren’t paying close enough attention to their diet), so they do feel bigger. The key to success is to reduce body fat and build muscle. Then, you will be one happy camper with less noticeable cellulite – and you’l be stronger, fitter and healthier.

Butt implantsHere is a perfect example of how adding muscle mass can drastically improve cellulite. I googled butt augmentation to find a before and after photo of someone who just added “muscle” (pictured left). As you can see, just by increasing the simulation of muscle mass greatly improved the appearance of her body fat. Of course she didn’t have to go under the knife to get that result, but it’s a great illustration of the point I’m trying to get across to you today. (…and if that doesn’t make you want to do squats, I don’t know what will!)

tone legsSome may argue my theory, but I have seen too many transformations as a result of diet and exercise that are undeniable proof that it works. Although diet and exercise may not always get rid of the problem completely, I bet it works ten times better than any cellulite cream on the market!

GET TO WORK!

Here is a great lower body conditioning workout that not only will help burn fat, but will tone muscle. Powerful plyometric exercises are another great way to build muscle mass – plus it burns a LOAD of calories to help with reducing body fat. Give this workout a try and you’ll realize why we call it Dead Legs!

DEAD LEGS:
Mission: 
3 rounds for time

20 Jailhouse Squats (prisoner squats)
20 Mary Catherines (plyo switch lunge)
20 X Squats (Squat wide, jump feet together and then back out wide, making an X)
20 Crisscross Squats (180 Jumps)
20 Bridges (butt lifts – with hands and feet on floor, lifting butt to up toward the ceiling)
1-Minute Wall sits 

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Reebutt Workout: It’s Time to Rock Your Winter Jeans

Can I have my young bottom back please?

If only you could Reebutt. You know, get the butt you had when you were 10. When I see young little girls at the beach, I marvel at how nice their little bottoms are – but think about their lifestyle. They can sit squatted down playing in the sand for hours. No wonder those little things are perky!

Let’s be honest. Most women aren’t hanging out, wearing bikinis and skintight workout shorts like you see in many of the fitness motivational pictures or magazines. Most of us just want to look good in clothes, much less half naked.

Cold weather is coming, or is already here for some of you northerners. For us beach-town folks, we finally get to cover up a little – and it doesn’t matter how much you pay for your jeans if your butt is flat as a pancake or big as a house.

Don’t get me wrong, being in a bathing suit definitely makes me want to work on my derriere, but it doesn’t stop there. Good glutes can also change your appearance in clothes too. Specifically training the legs and glutes can get your booty ready – and I love me some Miss Me Jeans! Unfortunately, even a nice pair of jeans with enough bling on the pockets to blind someone, can’t hide our imperfections, no matter how flashy they are. So, don’t let the extra layer of clothing fool you into thinking it’s okay to get lazy. Keep working!

Benefits of a good glute routine: 

1. Lifts your butt
2. Turns pear shape bottoms to apple bottoms
3. Reduces the appearance of cellulite
4. Smoothes skin (wrinkles) and improves texture
5. Improves strength
6. Gives you a youthful appearance (at least from the rear! ha!)
7. Fills out deflated bottoms that otherwise sag, shake, rattle and roll.

The Reebutt Workout

Yes, his workout is a tribute to Reebok – because they are totally kicking people’s BUTTS these days – and people are loving it!

Try this super simple, but SUPER EFFECTIVE (ouchie) workout. Be ready to feel fire in your pants!!

This workout is HOT! (the burning muscle kind that is).

Follow Along with me!

Written Workout:

Go from one exercise straight to the next without rest for the best results. If it starts to burn (like a UTI, as Steve says), then shake it out and get right back at it. The reason this workout is so effective is because we’ll stay on one leg the whole time, and then swap legs and focus on the other leg.

20 Squats
20 Right Lunges
20 Right Stomps
20 Right Leg Cook Hip Lifts

20 Squats
20 Left Lunges
20 Left Stomps
20 Left Leg Cook Hip Lifts

REPEAT 2 TIMES (4 total)

Don’t be lazy this winter! #GetAfterIt – or I’ll have to get after you!

FitFluential LLC compensated me for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

BUTTS BEWARE: 5 Soggy Bottom Makers

You’ve probably heard the song Man of Constant Sorrow, by the Soggy Bottom Boys. Well, let me introduce you to “Women of Constant Sorrow”, by the Soggy Bottom Girls – one very sad song I hear women sing every day.

I don’t know many people who wouldn’t want to improve their rear end. However, I think some women have the whole “out of sight out of mind” problem. Meaning, since they don’t see it, they kinda forget they should be working on it.

Trust me, I wasn’t so encouraged to do a bunch of lunges and squats until I went bikini shopping a few years back. I was mortified when I saw my butt in a 3-way mirror. At that time, I didn’t have a full length mirror at home and I had become comfortably plump after getting married. When I saw my bumpy saggy fat butt in the mirror, I practically RAN to the gym.

We can easily become obsessed with our stomach fat because we see it every day. Our butt, on the other hand, is not something we see all the time – but just because we don’t see it, doesn’t mean we should ignore it.

Cindy Crawford is a beautiful girl, but by the looks of this recent photo taken in Mexico, she has a serious case of the Saggy Bottom. To make sure you don’t start singing the Soggy Bottom Blues, you may need a butt check. Here are 5 surefire ways to get a bumpy, fatty, flabby, saggy bottom.

5 Sogging Bottom Makers

1. Sit all day. If you sit most of the day, you need to do serious weight training for the lower body to keep your but from totally deflating. Walking or jogging is helpful when it comes to burning calories, but only resistance training will fill out the butt muscles to make the bottom nice and round – and not flat as a pancake.

2. Run a lot. If you love to run, you may actually run your butt off – seriously. Runners burn so many calories, they often burn both fat and muscle. A perky bottom is only perky when it has muscle. If you run a lot, you should dedicate at least one day a week to training legs – especially glute and hamstring exercises.

3. Become a vegetarian. OK, not really, but if you love veggies more than meat, you likely are not eating enough protein to support valuable lean muscle mass. If you are working out, ACSM says you should have .5-.8gm of protein per pound of ideal bodyweight. Don’t talk yourself into thinking you eat a lot of protein until you actually add it up. Many people think they eat more than they do. Total your protein intake for the day and compare it to ACSM’s recommendation. (quick reference – 130lb woman: 65-104gms, 180lb man: 90-144gms)

4. Eat too much. This may seem like a no-brainer, but many people don’t realize how much their bottom would change if they reduced their calories. If you carry your weight on your hips or butt, you will greatly benefit from lowering your caloric intake. Since you gain fat in that area, you will also lose fat in that area when losing weight.

5. Eat too little. Just as some people can collect too much fat on their backside when they eat too much, the opposite can happen when someone eats too little. People who are not eating enough calories, or are not eating often enough, can burn both fat and muscle. As someone loses muscle, they lose the firmness and perkiness that went with it. With muscle loss, also comes a slower metabolism. By eating often, and getting enough protein, you can preserve muscle and a healthy metabolism.

Name that Celebrity Butt? 

  
  

ANSWERS & HOW I’D WHIP THIER BUTTS IN SHAPE:
(In the order of appearance) 

Brittany Spears – Britt needs to clean up her diet to get rid of some of that premature cellulite. I’d also have her doing a butt-load (pun intended) of cardio and a ton of glute and hamstring exercises. She would shape up fast because she’s young. She could totally have a rockin’ body.

Janice Dickinson – Someone’s been neglecting their body. Janice desperately needs to do some weight training to re-inflate her deflated derriere. I bet if she lifted heavy, she could totally change her physique and shave 10 years off that body. We would be doing a ton of squats and walking lunges, as well as a lot of one legged exercises to work her gluteus medius (#20 on the diagram, which is the upper part of the glutes) to round her butt back out where she’s flat on top. I’d also increase her protein intake so she can build the muscle she needs to lift her back up and to smooth out the dimply crepey skin.

Anna Kournikova – Obviously she’s doing everything right. This is what an healthy butt should look like – beautiful, plump and smooth! We could workout together! 🙂 The key for this Biggest Loser Trainer will be for her to adjust her diet if her activity changes. Many time active people keep eating as if they are still as active as they once were. If her activity decreases, she’ll have to be more purposeful with her workouts as well as diet.

Tara Reid – This is what someone looks like when they have been on an extreme diet, or lost weight drastically, without training (or done a lot of drugs! ha!) Honestly, if I didn’t know this person, I’d just say she was, or still is, malnourished. She’d make massive improvements by starting a weight training program and improving the quality of her eating. She, like Janice, could probably lift pretty heavy and see some major improvement – but she won’t get that without adjusting her diet to support her training.

Kim Kardashian – I’d stick with mostly bodyweight exerises, conditioning and cardio with a low-calorie diet to help her lose the extra junk in the trunk, without losing her signature bottom. She’s got great skin, so it would super easy to whip her into amazing shape fast. However, if she lets that fanny get out of hand, it will just get bigger and bigger …and probably wider and wider, …and saggier and saggier. 

Jennifer Love Hewitt – Another beauty who’s backside isn’t a pretty as her face. I’d have Kim and Jen working out together! They both need cardio and conditioning and full body toning, however I’d have Jennifer doing more glute specific exercises to give her a much needed lift. Sorry Jen! 

Runners Beware: 4 Things You Need to Know

When I think of runners I think of fit people. I picture thin peeps jogging it out every day, lookin’ and feeling good – but that is not always the case. Many runners may be doing their body (and physique) more harm than good.  Although I am a runner and love the benefits of it, there can be some negative side effects if that’s all you do.

#1 You Can Get Skinny Fat. We’ve all seen it. A person is slim, but not fit. They jiggle in the middle, their butt sags, their thighs flab, but they wear a size 4. If you aren’t preserving muscle with resistance training and getting enough protein (I take 100-125gms a day) you could lose valuable muscle that gives you the fit and firm shape you want. 

#2 Your Metabolism Can Slow Down. Our metabolism is primarily based on our muscle mass. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn at rest (Basal Metabolic Rate). For instance, most of our female clients burn between 1200-1300 calories at rest (Mine is BMR is 1500). I’m not muscle-bound by all means, but I do have more lean mass so I do burn more calories than I did without muscle. I am a runner, but I also do hit the weights HARD – and as you can see (that’s me on the right), my legs don’t look like a bodybuilder. Note: Resistance training is any exercise that uses resistance (weight) like weights, bands, kettlebells and power yoga or bootcamp (using your own body weight).  Read the rest of this entry

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