Everyone has a particular problem area that frustrates. For some people, it may be the hips, for others it's saggy arms. For millions it's the dreaded jelly belly! The truth is that you cannot spot-tone specific areas but there are moves you can do in conjunction with regular cardio exercise that will help make your problem spot disappear! Here are five of the most common complaints and ideas for shaping them up!
The saggy butt is one of the top complaints of both men and women, but it's also one of the easiest muscles to tone and shape! The buttocks are controlled by the gluteal muscles, which are among the largest muscles of the body and provide support for sitting, standing and squatting. Because these muscles are so large and are used every day, they respond very quickly to toning.
Exercises: Squats are the number one move to shape up the butt. Begin by standing with your feet about shoulder-width apart and your hands by your sides. You may want to place a chair behind you for support. Gradually sit back until your buttocks almost touch the chair and then straighten up. Do three sets of 20 squats daily.
"Batwingsâ€ or Saggy Arms
The bane of older women everywhere (and many younger women, too!) is the saggy muscle that runs along the back of the upper arm opposite the bicep muscle. This is known as the tricep and can be challenging to tone, but it can be done.
Exercises: Begin by holding a 3-5-lb. weight in your right hand. Raise the weight straight above your head and then slowly lower the weight back and down until your elbow forms a right angle, then raise it back up. Do three sets of 20 repetitions daily.
Many people tend to store fat along the hips and outer thighs, charmingly known as "saddlebags.â€ Getting rid of saddlebags can be difficult but the best results come from a combination of consistent cardio exercise and isometric movements that help tone the muscle.
Exercises: Begin by standing straight with one hand on a chair for support. Lift your right leg a few inches off the ground and then raise your leg out to the side and lower it. Repeat this movement for three sets of 25 repetitions daily.
Having a saggy stomach is common and it's important to realize that crunches alone will not banish the jiggle. The fat that lies over the muscle is what creates the saggy, loose appearance. Muscle-building moves should be paired with cardiovascular exercise for the best results and be prepared to invest time and effort. Shaping and defining the stomach can take months, but it's worth every minute.
Exercises: Begin by lying facedown on a yoga mat. Place your hands on the mat near your shoulders, take a deep breath, and then push your body up until the hands and feet support it. Hold this position for 20 seconds. Lower yourself down to the floor, rest for a few seconds, and then repeat. Do three sets of 10 repetitions daily. This is known as the "plankâ€ poses in yoga and is wonderful for toning the abdominal muscles.
Chubby Back or "Bra Overhangâ€
Excess fat in the back area can make it look like you're hiding several lumpy bundles back there, but with a little persistence you can tone it up and make your back an object of envy. This should be paired with a consistent cardiovascular exercise for the best results.
Exercise: Hold a 3-5-lb. weight in your right hand. Step forward about twelve inches with your left foot. Use your left hand for support as you lean forward and let your right arm hang straight with the weight. Keep your spine straight. Begin lifting the weight slowly, as though you were starting a lawnmower, until the elbow is at a right angle and then lower. Repeat for three sets of 20 repetitions.
Everyone has problem areas but when you couple the appropriate exercise with a regular aerobic regimen, you are on the way to controlling them. A few months down the road, you won't even remember what you looked like before
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