This might seem like quite an unusual post, but I was thinking about the transformation in my legs over the past two years and thought that perhaps there were ladies like me out there who really wanted to shift the cellulite or wake up the lazy muscles around their legs and glutes (bottom, behind, rear, tush, whatever you like to call it). I figured I would have loved to have read a straight forward blog post from a normal girl about how she managed to tackle the problem, so I thought I would share a few tips with you that do not seem ridiculously unachievable and actually work. So here we are. Get yourself comfy, this is a long one. (I just want to quickly note, I’m not trying to ‘brag’ in any way about my health or shape. I’m just trying to spread on some insight and tips and I really hope it helps.)
Let me tell you more about me so you can get more of a picture. I was a ballerina for 10 years before University, which is one of the reasons that I was slim growing up and managed to stay slim up until now. It definitely changed the way in which I exercised, ate, held myself etc. However, over the University years, you really give up caring about how much butter you put on your bread, how many cakes you make with your flatmates, how much oil you fry your sweet potatoes in and how much cheese and double cream you add to your potato gratin. I am guilty of all of the above and then some, but because it wasn’t changing my body shape completely, I carried on and continued to eat without a care in the world for weight or health. It was only in my third year that I began to notice that my bum was practically a part of my back and legs and that I had formed dimples, stretch marks, fatty lumps and whatever else comes with cellulite. It really wasn’t pretty and it was when an ex pointed out, ‘Aww look at that dimple in your thigh,’ that I realised I needed to sort myself out.
So this is what I did and currently do. There are three areas I want to mention. They do not all have to be done together, but it will definitely help if they are. Firstly, there is a diet or healthy eating plan I should say, an exercise routine focused on legs and glutes and thirdly skincare and products. Each has massively helped me over the past two years to get my body to how I want it to look and I still have a little way to go.
1. So first of all, food. Pretty obvious to say but there are some little changes you can make that will make a lot of difference. I cut out fizzy drinks around 3 years ago and haven’t looked back. I just drink water usually now, only venturing to the odd lemonade or coke for a hangover or martini mixer. Not putting so much sugar in your body through drinking can help massively. I do realise that the image above I am holding a glass of wine, but this is my poison of choice for the odd weekend. We all deserve a treat.
I also cut out how much oil I cook things in, use less butter for anything I eat and don’t snack on cakes and crackers anymore. I switched to single cream, only drink semi skimmed and bake less. It might sound boring but I still eat my fair share of sugar treats, just in moderation. I also cut down on white bread and switched to soda bread (you’ll be far less bloated), stocked up on green apples which are filled with everything you could possibly want and try to eat salads or soups for dinner to cut down on carb intake. Just whatever you do, don’t starve yourself of treats or yummy things. It’ll only increase your cravings more for the naughty goods and you’ll end up eating more of the fatty things. If you’re able to do this for a few months, if you’re also doing things to start breaking up the fatty cells in your legs, you will not be adding them back into your body, plus you’ll feel so much better in yourself and full of energy.
This is one yummy and healthy snack idea. Ryvita crackers covered in cottage cheese, avocado and some cracked black pepper. Cottage cheese is one of the most healthy cheeses to eat and avocado is full of rich healthy oils, just makes sure you eat them in moderation.
2. Secondly, exercise. This is the part that people hate the most but there are so many things you could do two or three times a week that could really make a difference. Go to the gym, go to gym classes, Zumba, buy a yoga DVD, buy a dance workout DVD, go for a run, make a little workout routine in your bedroom. As I used to be a dancer, I still remember all of the leg stretches I used to do so I’ve worked them into my leg routine. You can pick up ballet workout DVDs also, such as the New York Ballet workout. My gym routine is as follows:
– 20-30 mins cardio, either running, walking up the stair machine, biking, cross trainer.
– 20 mins on the vibrating power plates doing a variety of squats and lunges, holding for 60 seconds each time, 18 times in total.
– 5 mins on the leg press machine, a weight machine for your thighs and glutes.
– 20 mins leg stretches, with dog kicks and leg extensions.
Big Tip: I cannot recommend the app and website The Perfect Bum (.com) enough. It was a big turning point for me. After I heard Doug’s description of how you need to connect your bum muscles to your brain so you can move them, the same concept with every other muscle in your body, then you will be able to actually work those muscles out rather than trying and failing. Otherwise they will sit inside your other bum muscles and never start moving. He teaches you how to find them and use them and it works a treat!
So get yourself motivated. Have a picture of Miranda Kerr on your screen saver or on your walls to remind you of what you’re aiming for. It’s only an hour or so twice a week and you’ll feel amazing for it!
3. So onto the bit that we all love, products and beauty. Lets be honest, there is no miracle product out there that will get rid of cellulite. Cellulite products work because of the heat and movement you are adding to your skin and your belief that it might be working. Adding moisturiser to that area will work just as well, making sure you rub it in quite firmly in round circular motions. My particular favourite is Re-Gen Cream which also really helps to improve stretch marks around these areas as well. You could buy yourself a massaging brush that you massage in circular movements around your thighs and glutes and again this will stimulate the blood flow around the dormant cells. I also use an exfoliating loofa from the Body Shop and make sure that every time I shower, I really scrub and rub at the leg and glute muscles, stimulating more movement. It actually really helps and is so easy to work into your showering routine. A few other products are things like sponges, like the one I have from the Body Shop that works to exfoliate and massage the skin, or a product such as the Body Shop firming lotion. Again this product works more because of your action of rubbing it in, but I do really like the way this feels as though it is tightening the skin on your legs slightly.
So those are my three top tips. Eat healthier, exercise and try changing the way you massage and wash your legs. They are all very obvious but sometimes it takes someone to say it for someone else to take note. I really hope this is of help to some ladies. I just wanted to give you some ideas and motivation for the new year :)
I’d love to know if anyone has any more great tips for me? Good luck ladies!