Wanna know how celebs like Reese Witherspoon and Eva Mendes earn their PG (Perfect Glutes) rating? Time and money help, but the real payoff comes from working out with trainers who know all the body-shaping tricks. Here, top pros help you sculpt an A-list body.
1. Go for the Glutes
Celebrity Trainer: David Kirsch, author of The Ultimate New York Body Plan (McGraw-Hill, 2005) and trainer to Heidi Klum and Naomi Campbell
To sculpt your own box-office butt, try this move that's touted as the ultimate celebrity secret to a better backside: stability ball prone scissors.
- Lie facedown with your hips resting on a stability ball, hands and feet on the floor for balance.
- Walk your feet out behind you so your legs form a wide V.
- Slowly lift both of your feet about 12 inches off the floor and squeeze them together.
- Lower your toes back down to the floor, spreading them into a V shape at the bottom of the move, and repeat for a total of 15 to 20 reps.
2. Beat the Clock
Celebrity Trainer: Joe Dowdell, president of Peak Performance Strength & Conditioning Center in New York City, and trainer to Anne Hathaway and Claire Danes
Spend less time (about 20 to 30 seconds) resting between sets at the beginning of your workout when your muscles aren't exhausted, and more time (40 to 60 seconds) as they become fatigued. This method, known as density training, can cut the time you spend working out by as much as 15 to 20 percent. It also forces your muscles to work harder while improving your endurance at the same time.
3. Play Favorites
Celebrity Trainer: Harley Pasternak, author of Five Factor Fitness (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2004) and trainer to Alicia Keys, Eva Mendes, and Halle Berry
Work with only one arm or one leg at a time when strength training with dumbbells. This way, while you're resting one side of your body you'll keep the other side going strong. Your heart will also have to keep pumping hard through your entire workout, which means that you'll actually burn more calories overall.
4. Think in Focus
Celebrity Trainer: Michael George, author of Body Express Makeover (Fireside Simon & Schuster, 2005) and trainer to Julianne Moore, Meg Ryan, and Reese Witherspoon
Most people do two to three sets of two to three exercises for each muscle group. You'll get better results if you pick four different exercises that work the same muscle — do three sets of them back-to-back with no rest in between. Think squats, lunges, side kicks, and roundhouse kicks for glutes. Focusing on one muscle for three sets of four exercises allows you to work each muscle 25 to 50 percent more thoroughly.
Bonus: You'll finish your workout in half the time.
5. Take a Breath
Celebrity Trainer: Mark Blanchard, creator of The Sedona Experience DVD and trainer to Jennifer Lopez and Jennifer Aniston
Even if you're not in yoga class, being mindful of your breath can pay off. Inhaling and exhaling evenly and completely makes any workout more effective by bringing extra oxygen to your muscles. Aim for about 12 inhalations and exhalations per minute.
6. Count Down
Celebrity Trainer: Ashley Borden, Nike spokeswoman who has trained Mandy Moore, Christina Aguilera, Lauren Graham, and Tori Spelling
Instead of starting every set by counting from 1 to 10, decide how many repetitions you're going to do and count backward (10, 9, 8...). This will add staying power to your workout because it gives you more of a finish line to cross, making it harder for you to quit too soon.
7. Shrug It Off
Celebrity Trainer: Harley Pasternak
Increase the benefits of your shoulder presses by adding a shrug (as if you were trying to touch your shoulders to your ears) at the top of the movement (just be careful not to lock your elbows). This trick will boost your sculpting results because you'll be moving through a fuller range of motion than if you were just pressing the weights up and down.
8. Sculpt a Sexy Back
Celebrity Trainer: John MacLaren, founder of Elite Fitness Training Systems in L.A. and trainer to Melinda Clarke of The OC
When you're doing lat pull-downs, focus on pulling your shoulders down and together as if you were trying to get your shoulder blades to touch behind your back. This motion keeps you from using your biceps instead of your upper-back muscles — a mistake that causes your arms and shoulders to tire out before your back has a chance to get a good workout.
9. Boost Your Burn
Celebrity Trainer: Gregory Joujon-Roche, trainer to Rachel Weisz and Demi Moore
- After warming up on the treadmill by walking for 3 minutes, increase the incline to level 8, hold on to the handles, and pretend that you're trudging through the mud.
- Bend your knees and dig into the treadmill with your heels for one to two minutes, then lower the incline back to 1 for one to two minutes to recover.
- Repeat this cycle 10 times.
- You'll increase your calorie burn as you sculpt a sexy butt.
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10. Get Six-Pack Abs
- Lie faceup holding a stability ball with your arms extended over your head.
- Raise arms and legs to meet over your abs and place the ball between your ankles.
- Repeat movement, taking the ball into your hands.
- Do 3 sets of 10, 3 times a week.
11. Get Slim All Over
A combo of cardio and strength training quickens weight loss. Do 30 minutes of cardio three times a week and light weights twice a week.
12. Target Glutes with Sumo Sidekicks
- With feet wider than shoulder-width apart, bend knees past 90 degrees.
- Stand and kick right leg to side at hip height.
- Repeat on left.
- Do 20 reps 3 times a week.