Have you ever spent way too much time poking and prodding your butt, hips and thighs in the mirror? Have you often avoided bathing suits and shorts (and therefore summer!) because you were embarrassed by your cellulite?
You aren’t alone.
Cellulite affects millions around the world. It doesn’t just affect overweight people either. Men, women, old, young, overweight and thin – we all deal with this condition. Many people scour the internet for quick fixes to this annoying problem.
Long-term fixes take long-term work. The good news is that you can help reduce and possibly eliminate cellulite with some simple workout moves I’ll tell you about below. These moves won’t make your cellulite disappear overnight, but they will help tone your muscles and tighten your skin in the long run.
What is Cellulite?
Cellulite is the result of subcutaneous fat protruding through your connective tissue. Subcutaneous fat is the fat that is right under your skin, the part you can pinch. With connective tissue that resembles a honeycomb, it’s easy for this protrusion to appear lumpy or dimpled on the surface.
Cellulite can be caused by a number of things including excess fat, sedentary lifestyle, smoking, dehydration, slow metabolism and even hormonal changes or disruptions.
Fortunately, cellulite isn’t a cause for serious concern. While it can be unsightly, there are no risks associated with cellulite aside from the drop in self-confidence most of us feel when we notice it.
Of course, some of the things that cause cellulite (like smoking, excess fat and a sedentary lifestyle) can have their own wealth of issues. That’s why taking care of yourself by eating well and staying active can really help your overall health, as well as your cellulite issues.
No matter what is causing your cellulite, there are ways to lessen its appearance and even eliminate it completely. Today I want to focus on incorporating exercise in order to reduce cellulite. Read on to see my favorite anti-cellulite moves below.
How to Treat Cellulite
When my friends call me crying about their cellulite I am happy to tell them that it can be often can be treated through proper diet and exercise. According to Ariane Hundt, founder of Brooklyn Bridge Bootcamp, “Getting rid of cellulite requires proper exercise, nutrition, proper circulation and the control of fat-storage hormones (that are) more prevalent in the lower body.”
This means that working out the lower half of your body is going to really help diminish your leg cellulite once and for all. So what are the best lower body exercises for getting rid of cellulite? Keep reading to find out!
The Best Anti-Cellulite Workout
In general, the best workout programs include a mixture cardio and strength training routines. When it comes to creating an anti-cellulite workout, there are certain routines and exercises that may trump the rest.
Mainly you’ll want to target problem areas like the thighs, butt and hips. These are the most common places for cellulite to develop. You’ll also want to focus on burning fat and building muscle in these areas in order to make your skin taut and healthy.
According to Dr. Westcott, “the average woman loses 5 lbs of muscle and replaces it with about 15 lbs of fat every decade of her adult life.” I”m sure you can already tell that fat is much softer than muscle. Muscles take up less space than fat, letting your skin stay in it’s naturally tight state and not stretching it beyond capacity.
That being said, I found several amazing moves on Prevention’s website that I want to share with you. These moves will burn fat, develop muscle and scare cellulite away faster than it can appear.
1. Clockwork Lunges
These are a super fun exercise that I often do in my kitchen while I’m waiting for water to boil or waiting for something to cook.
- Begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart, resting your hands on your hips for good support.
- Take a large step forward with your right leg and then bend down until your leg is at a 90 degree angle and your left knee is almost hitting the ground. Then push with your leg back up to a standing position.
- Next you’ll take a step to your right with your right foot.
- Bend the right knee to lower down and keep your left leg straight, then return to a starting position.
- Now take a step backwards with your right leg, lowering down until your left leg is in a 90 degree angle again.
- Now begin the same process with your left leg, working yourself around like a clock. This will get your butt and thighs burning in no time!
2. Squat with Calf Raise
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
- Bend your knees to squat down as you push your butt back.
- Lower yourself until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this position for a few seconds and then stand up.
- As you arrive at standing position, raise up to the balls of your feet, shifting your weight onto your calf muscles.
- Then lower down into the starting position.
You should do 3 rounds of 15 reps for best results.
This move is great because it helps you recruit more muscles in your legs than just a plain old squat. More muscle recruitment equals more fat burned and more muscles created, the perfect attack on cellulite!
3. Curtsy Lunge and Kick
Curtsy lunges are my favorite kind of lunge because they work different muscles than a basic lunge. As with most lower body exercises, you’ll start with your feet hip-width apart and your hands on your hips.
- Step back into a curtsy move by stepping your right foot behind your left leg, while your left leg goes down into a squatting position.
- Hold this position for 3 seconds and then as step your right back up, kick it out to the side before repeating the move again.
- Do 15 reps on each leg, repeated three times.
4. Glute Squeeze
You’ll quickly understand why this one is called a glute squeeze.
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent. Your feet should be hip-width apart.
- Then while holding your abs tight, push your heels into the floor and squeeze your glutes as you lift your hips up to form a bridge.
- Next, lower your butt back down for 2 seconds and then immediately press your hips back up, squeezing your glutes again.
To maximize this move, don’t let your butt hit the floor when you go down. Or, if that is too tough, feel free to tap your hips down to the floor to get a break when you need it. This move will have you squeezing the cellulite right off your butt!
5. Swiss Ball Hip Lift and Hamstring Curl
This move targets your butt, thighs, hamstrings and core, making it an amazing anti-cellulite exercise. You’ll need a “swiss ball” or stability ball for this move. You can get them for pretty cheap on Amazon if you don’t have one already.
- To do the move, lie on your back with your heels on top of the stability ball.
- Next, lift your hips up so that your whole body is in a straight line.
- Then you’ll bend your knees only, keeping your hips in the air, in order to pull the stability ball toward you with your feet.
- Then straighten your legs to push the ball away again.
Do 3 sets of 15 reps and your whole lower body will thank you (or hate you!).
This is a move I hadn’t heard of before but I really like its simplicity.
- As always, stand with your feet hip-width apart.
- Bend your waist in order to touch your toes. If you can’t keep your legs straight in order to touch your toes, it’s okay to bend the knees a little if needed.
- Now you’ll actually bend your knees so much that your butt should almost touch the floor (you can lift your heels if needed).
- Keeping your hands on your toes, lift your butt back up so that you are in your toe-touch stance again.
- Now bend your knees and move that butt toward the floor again. Then stand up.
Repeat this 15 times for 3 rounds.
7. Bun Burner
This one is aptly named. Your buns will surely be burning when you’re through.
- For this one you have to get down on all fours. Make sure your hands are in line with your shoulders and your knees are in line with your hips. Always keep your core tight when doing any exercise move.
- Now keeping your hips square to the ground, extend your right leg behind you with your toes pointed.
- Then pull the same knee into your chest as your contract your core muscles.
- Now extend back out again.
- Repeat this move 12 times on each side for three rounds.
For an extra burn, when you are finished with the above instructions, then stay in the same position only this time when you send your leg back you’ll pulse it 3 to 5 times before pulling it back in. Burn baby, burn!
8. Plie Sweep
This move takes me back to my ballet days. If you aren’t exactly sure what a plie is, check out this YouTube video. It shows this move perfectly.
- To tackle this exercise, you’ll want to stand with your feet wide apart this time, with your toes pointing outwards, towards the sides of the room.
- Lower down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. When doing this move, it’s always important to keep your core tight and your tailbone tucked in. You should feel a stretch within your inner thighs.
- Hold the low position for a few sections and then raise back up.
- As you get up, sweep one leg across your body like you are kicking a ball sideways.
- Then return to the starting position, repeating the plie but sweeping with the opposite leg.
- Repeat 12 times on each leg.
9. Plie Squat with Heel Raise
While we are on the topic of plies, let’s toss another similar exercise into the mix.
- This time you’ll begin the same way with your feet wide apart, toes pointing out.
- Squat down until your thighs are almost parallel to the floor, hold for a few seconds and then push yourself back up to standing.
- Repeat this 15 times.
- Now, you’ll repeat this same move only this time you’ll do it on the tips of your toes, engaging your calves and core as your squat. Or you can alternate between legs for the heel lifts as well.
10. Squat Kickback
This is another seemingly simple move that can really provide a burn.
- Stand up with your feet together.
- You’ll bend down into a squatting position making sure your knees don’t go past your toes (stick your butt out like you are sitting into a chair).
- Hold this position for 2-3 seconds and as you stand, kick your right leg back while squeezing your glutes.
- Hold your right leg back and out for 1-2 seconds, then lower it down.
- Then squat again and switch your kickback leg.
- Repeat this 12 times on each leg for some ultimate cellulite reduction.
Are you Ready to Banish Cellulite Forever?
Now that you’re armed with plenty of exercises to get rid of cellulite, are you truly up for the challenge? Taking control of your body is going to help you get rid of your cellulite in no time. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
Exercise will help you burn fat, tighten your skin and increase your muscle size. The bonus is that the lower body contains some of your largest muscles which means they have the most calorie-burning power. Getting your butt, hips, and thighs involved in all your workouts will give you the most bang for your buck.
I’m so excited for you to try this workout yourself. Comment below when you complete it and let me know if your lower body is burning!