Growing the glute #101. We all want a better butt – well of course you do! Well, if you’re not blessed with a glorious glute then you might want to add a little ‘mass to that ass’.
That’s the mission I started a few years ago but only recently found a quick and effective way to grow your butt in less than a month. It may be quick but it will certainly be effective (and painful) sorry, no shortcuts.
In my perpetual life of googling everything that ever crosses my mind I really spent a lot of time this month working on improving myself. Learning Spanish has really given me a focus but also trying to achieve my personal ‘body goals’. Understanding how the body really works and how muscles work in the body has taken over the past few weeks.
Growing the Glute
Getting a bigger butt is actually a lot more complex than I had thought. Squats and lunges never seemed to get me very far and I could never work out why. There’s actually a pretty accurate science behind it but first, we need to break down the ‘glute’ into categories.
What are the muscles in the butt?
The Maximus – The muscle that covers the whole buttocks.
The Medius – The central muscle to the hip (attaches to the hip bone)
The Minimus – The top of of the buttocks (the bit that really shows your butt shape)
Butt.. Pun intended, knowing the muscles in your butt and incorporating exercises won’t really do much for growing the glute. You have to know how to grow your muscles collectively.
Why squats are no good at changing the shape of your butt
Squats activate (growing the glutes) quads, core and hamstrings. They also target the Maximus: a muscle which is thinner but covers more surface on the glute, making it harder to specifically focus growth on – Essential for growing the glute. Using all of the muscles it takes to perform a squat is great in improving your body. But all of those muscles will grow along side the glute which creates larger legs and the look of less improvement overall.
What I’m trying to say is Isolation is key.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOVGz7ZqowU%5B/embedyt%5D
Isolation exercises for each muscle
Isolation exercises use a specific part of the body at a time, encouraging the growth of just your butt muscles. Much like an upper body workout, it changes routines for each muscle in that part of the body.
A few exercises to note:
- Leg raises
- Donkey Kicks
- Glute Bridges
- Bulgarian split squats
Leg lifts for the minimus, hip thrusts for the Maximus and side leg raises for your medius muscles. Etc.. There are plenty of different isolation exercises you can do for growing the glute.
Most isolation workouts are done without equipment as they’re just warm-ups. They are great on their own as they’ll also work on other muscles so try to balance your workouts so that you improve your medius, Maximus and minimus over your quads and hamstrings. Try using resistant bands during warm-ups for an extra push. I also use small dumbells and kettlebells (I have created a home-gym equipment plan for just this occasion!).
Isolation exercises should be included in every workout for a quicker result typically at the start of a workout and used as an activator.
Aka ‘warm-ups’. Activators are isolation workouts (as above) that should be completed before any workout to increase muscle gain. It warms up the muscles and sends signals to the glute to expand and stretch (taking more of a beating during the full workout routine).
The key thing to note with activating exercises is that they are a warm-up so your full concentration should be on clenching the muscle through the movement. Clenching the muscle instead of working through it without intention is essentially warming the muscle up until it feels like the muscle is becoming sore. Using tools like Resistance Bands and Ankle/Wrist Weights can really help activate your glutes before your full-workout.
So whilst activators can be used on their own to increase muscle definition they’re also a ‘must have’ for the growth of the glute and engagement of all of the glute muscles during exercise.
See the list of isolators and mix them up to create an activating routine – or you can use my plan below
The official “Growing the glute” workout
Isolation (activator) routine
Pick two hip activators and two glute activators, complete all reps.
- Matt- Side Leg raises R & L (40)
- Matt- Super man’s (lift opposing arm to legs whilst on all fours) (40)
- Lunges R & L (20)
- Weighted (10kg) Wide Stance Glute Bridge (10)
Glute minimus and Maximus activators;
- Donkey Kicks with pointed toes R & L(30)
- Donkey Kicks with flat-footed R & L (30)
- Matt – Leg lifts on all fours R & L (30)
Specifically working on Maximus growth but also includes toning and shape via the medius and minimus muscle inclusions.
- Hip thrust – in a wide bridge position (10) Optional weight: 15kg dumbell/15kg kettlebell or barbell
- Sumo Squats – wide stance feet pointing at 45 degrees (40) Optional weight: 10kg dumbells or 20kg barbel
- Lunges (10 each leg) Optional weight: 10kg dumbells or 20kg barbell
- One legged American deadlift – bend over bringing the weight to your knees (10 each leg) Optional weight: 10kg kettlebell/dumbell or 10kg barbell
- Curtsey lunge – Cross leg down and behind your front leg (10 per leg) Optional weight: 10kg dumbells or 20kg barbell
- Standard squat (40) Optional weight: 10kg dumbells or 20kg barbell
REPEAT x 3 for the best results!
Of course adding weight to your workout means burning more fat and creating a better shape on your body but if you don’t have weights why not try completing the workout with an extra rep!
This is my routine for growing the glute. I have been doing this routine (jumbled up and tweaked on certain days) twice a week for 4 weeks and have had huge results!
Making sure I have included hip isolators has been a massive game changer in the look of my butt.
Personally, I’m pretty sure I have weak Maximus muscles as the ‘mass’ has barely changed but the shape and look of my little booty is a lot more defined and toned. I’ve never really had a good looking butt, it’s always been flat so to have improved the shape really made a difference to the way I feel (and look).
Update April 2018. I still workout my butt and legs once a week with 2 isolating workouts during the week just to keep them activated as much as possible. I have noticed that bodyweight glute workouts no longer activate my glute so I have started including resistance bands. Along with increasing my deadlift from 20kg-30kg.
Of course, all bodies adapt to muscle improvement differently so you might have quicker results or slower but the key is you will have results.
Always focus on the glute, in all exercises that you do. If it helps: hold your glute with your hands and feel the muscle tension.Try to include at least 5 minutes of isolators every day and do a full workout twice a week, whenever possible.
The best thing to remember is that the muscles don’t wither quickly, so if you forget a workout. Pick it up as soon as you can.
Have a good diet, reduce sugar and salt as they can make you bloat and reduce the look of your new toned muscles. If you’d like to know what I eat in a day or the protein I use you can read several posts I’ve written. Protein and fat are necessary for energy, if you’d like to learn more about proper nutrition for fitness, read this! And please make sure you’re eating properly!