Got Buns Hun? Why Mamas Need Booty!



As a soccer player I never worried much about having a booty. Actually, I used to hate it- buying shorts and jeans in high school was a joke and don't even get me started about how I used to feel during bathing suit season. Thank goodness for separates.

Then, Sir Mix-a-lot released a catchy little tune and my biggest (literally) physical attribute became my best physical asset. Sir Mix-A-Lot and J. Lo put booty on the map. And while it was very inappropriate that I was once stopped and asked "how I got so much butt" it made me realize how powerful nice glutes could be for us ladies, aesthetically and as a runner, physically.

After getting inured while pregnant with Ethan I also realized just how important having some {muscular} junk in the trunk is. However, after seeing my butt flatter over the last few months than I ever had before, I have started incorporating glute training into my schedule more regularly. But, I'm not doing it just so I can fill my jeans to the brim again...

Mamas need booty for a whole host of reasons- yes, they look good and yes, they make jeans look better but, they serve a purpose, too.

Before you tell me you don't want a big butt, hear this:

The glutes (made up of three muscles- Gluteus Maximus, Medius and Minimus) sit in the center of posterior chain (muscles on the back side of the body) and are connected to the upper body, lower body and core. They are responsible for standing upright and stabilizing the trunk against forward folding movements (flexion) like bending over to pick up babies. And, they are responsible for a variety of movements in sports such as running, throwing, jumping and twisting. However, when they aren't firing properly other muscles like those in the low back, hamstrings and adductors (inner thigh) will step in and pick up the slack. This, over time can result in injuries to the overcompensating musculature causing low back, hip and knee pain.

While the Gluteus Maximus is the largest muscle in human body, the glutes don't have to have to be Kim Kardashian sized to be effective. They will however grow in size and change shape once you start working them regularly.

But hey, who doesn't want a higher, tighter booty... right?

The glutes also act as a counterbalance to the anterior pull on the sacrum which, during pregnancy, can happen naturally as the belly gets bigger. Tight hip flexors (muscles in the front of the thigh) accompany anterior pelvic tilt. When the hip flexors become tight it inhibits the glutes from working in their full range of motion and stops them from activating optimally.

So, having strong glutes means you are able to lift heavier and safer, run faster, move with more efficiency, and will also allow for less low back, knee and hip pain. Additionally, strong glutes may help prevent from pelvic floor disorders such as urinary stress incontinence.

So how do you get a strong booty?

First, you have to know how to engage them properly. You should feel glute exercises in the bum, not the back or the hamstrings.

---> check-in (to see if you're able to engage the glutes well, start by practicing a bridge pose (the pose in the cover picture). Start lying on your back, knees bent stacked over the heels, feet about hip width apart. On an exhale, squeeze the booty and then lift as you continue the exhale. If, you start to feel the low back or hamstrings then, you aren't engaging the glutes enough. Continue to practice until you feel like your butt cheeks are sore.)

Second, hit the glutes from multiple angles, several times per week. Even if you do some targeted glute training a few times a week you can perform unweighted moves when you have a few free minutes or, while you wash dishes or watch tv (or other activities where the legs are unused). Think of our 80's aerobics moves like fire hydrants, donkey kicks, side lying leg raises.

Exercises you can do frequently at home:

Although you can do these exercises without weights I highly recommend that you eventually build up to using resistance. The muscles have to be challenged to grow. So, to get that booty to keep lifting and getting to where you can bounce a quarter off them, you're going to have to keep adding stimulus. Most women can lift at least 10 pounds heavier than they think and you should aim for the last rep of each set to be challenging.

-> weighted/body weight glute bridge

-> weighted/body weight squat

-> body weight single leg glute bridge

-> single leg romanian deadlifts

-> lateral band walks

-> sumo squat

-> step ups

Aim to start with 3-4 exercises 2-3 times a week, performing somewhere in the range of 10-20 reps for 1-3 sets. The higher the weight, the less reps you'll perform.

Hopefully, I've convinced you how important it is to have a nice strong booty and that you need to be working those glutes at least once a week (if not more).

Please let me know if you have any questions or, if I can help you in any way! You can reach me here.

If you're interested in seeing some of my full body routines, sign up to receive my Free Busy Mama's Fitness Kick-Start Kit which includes a 4-week workout plan, a recovery yoga practice, and a calendar for planning. Grab it HERE!

In health,

Lauren

#prenatal #prenatalfitness #prenatalexercise #postpartumfitness #postpartumexercise #busymamas #BusyMamasHomeWorkout

© 2019 Lauren Anderson Fitness

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