The hourglass shape made famous by beauty icons like Marilyn Monroe and Kim Kardashian is best known for slender shoulders and a small waist with full hips, thighs, and butt.
Over the years, this curvy silhouette has been known for its perfect measurements and has been advertised on billboards, magazines, and influencer posts. However, the truth is that many celebrities seen in these photographs didn’t achieve those perfect measurements without the extra cost. Many spend frivolously on cosmetic procedures, work with the best personal trainers, buy expensive shapewear, and hire a professional photo editor to create the illusion of an hourglass figure.
But there are healthier ways to naturally shape your body without having to spend so much. Here are some of my favorite exercises to build a smaller waist, slimmer shoulders, and a bigger butt.
The Waist Shredder
Hula-hooping with a weighted hula-hoop is one of my favorite exercises for a smaller waist and more noticeable hips. Studies have shown that a weighted hula-hoop helps burn abdominal fat and inches while increasing trunk muscle mass. If you’re looking to lose inches around your waist and accentuate your hip and butt, hooping may be the right type of exercise for you.
A weighted hula-hoop helps burn abdominal fat and inches while increasing trunk muscle mass.
Flaunt Your New Booty
Strengthening the butt muscles can give your backside "more projection" without surgical intervention. A natural “butt lift” is possible by incorporating exercises such as weighted squats, hydrants with leg extension, donkey kicks, standing leg lifts, and booty sidekicks using medium resistance bands.
Strengthening the butt muscles can give your backside "more projection" without surgical intervention.
Keep in mind that it’s important to work out the gluteus consistently in a 360 approach. Not just for the sake of a better-looking, bigger, and rounder booty, but for the sake of increased blood flow in that area. Note that a lack of blood flow kills skin collagen, which means more cellulite. These exercises will build a stronger and better-looking butt to support your overall body functional movements and will get you one step closer to an hourglass figure.
Upper Body Workouts for Slimmer Shoulders
One of the best exercises for slimmer shoulders is a mixture of upper body calisthenics and light resistance band training. The word calisthenics comes from the Greek words kallos (beauty) and sthenos (strength). When performed in a continuous, rigorous fashion, calisthenics build up strength and aerobic capacity. Calisthenics are movements that utilize only your body weight without the use of any equipment. These exercises are performed with differing levels of intensity and rhythm.
I would advise that if you’re performing calisthenic workouts for slimmer shoulders and arms, be mindful to perform a majority of exercises using a more narrow-angle and keeping the movements slow and controlled. Wider grips tend to make your shoulders look wider.
Calisthenics are movements that utilize only your body weight without the use of any equipment.
Push-ups are an example of a calisthenic exercise. It works on different muscles depending on where you place your hands. If your arms are shoulder-width apart, you will be working on your back and shoulders. Narrower push-ups, with your hands placed closer together, targets your triceps more. These exercises allow for the development of strength, endurance, flexibility, and coordination, as well as slender looking shoulders.
Light Weights and Resistance Band Training
The ultimate secret to a leaner and more chiseled upper body is using light weights and resistance bands. These exercises should be performed in higher reps while working through all ranges of motion. Using a light hand weight or light resistance band during your strength training workouts increases your muscular endurance, whereas the heavier alternative builds muscular strength, which increases the size of your muscles. The key is finding the balance that fits your body type.
The ultimate secret to a leaner and more chiseled upper body is using light weights and resistance bands.
Keep in mind that you want to perform exercises with a 360 approach to target all areas for a longer and leaner upper body. Exercise programs such as functional training, yoga, barre, ballet, and pilates incorporate these types of long, lean, and free-flowing movements.
Proper Nutrition Is the Anchor
Diet with a combination of exercises goes hand in hand. If an hourglass figure is what you're looking to attain, keep in mind that eating the good stuff is a must.
The key to a healthy diet is to focus on eating whole foods in the right portion sizes from many food groups. Examples of whole foods include whole grains, nuts, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. Cut out the processed foods and include tons of healthy fats like Omega 3 that are found in walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and hemp seeds.
If you want a slimmer waist and a rounder booty, eat more Omega 3 fats!
According to Will Lassek, M.D., and Steven Gaulin, Ph.D., in the book titled Why Women Need Fat, the fat stored in a women’s hips and thighs is rich in a valuable substance concentrated in this part of the body. This fat is high in DHA, which is a component of the Omega 3 fatty acids in our diets. This signifies that our diets and the type of essential fatty acids we eat are also significant factors that determine our body shape. So, ladies, if you want a slimmer waist and a rounder booty, eat more Omega 3 fats!
A perfect hourglass figure may be hard to realistically achieve, and it’s a body shape that few people have naturally. However, it’s attainable through consistent hard work and a specific exercise routine. Even though there are ways to trim inches from your waist and tone your muscles in the desired places, it’s important to be realistic and to remember your measurements don’t define you. Instead of striving for a desired figure, try aiming for optimum overall health through active exercise, a nutritious diet, and embracing your body.