FACT: You and 80% of women past the age of 18 have cellulite.
FICTION: There are no exercises to improve cellulite so you are stuck the way you are.
So you want to do something about your cellulite. By this point, you know that no matter how much you wish or hard you hope and pray, it isn’t going to go away on its own. So what can you do?
As you no doubt already know, the marketplace is filled with all sorts of creams, lotions, treatments, equipment and various other hocus-pocus methods sold in an attempt to get rid of cellulite, but the fact is, almost none of it works.
When it comes to losing cellulite, like most things on a woman’s body, it doesn’t come off easy. But before further discussion about exercises that fight cellulite, take a minute to familiarize yourself with the enemy.
What is cellulite?
Known in the medical world as dermopanniculosis deformans, gynoid lipodystrophy, adiposis edematosa and status protrusus cutis, cellulite is known to the rest of the world as cottage cheese thighs, mattress butt and hail damage.
Medicine classifies cellulite into three categories:
- Category 1 – No visible clinical symptoms, fat deposits are only revealed under a microscopic;
- Category 2 – Skin begins to look pasty and it has decreased elasticity;
- Category 3 – Visible patches of roughness can be seen with the naked eye.
Although technically men could technically get cellulite, almost 98% of it is found in women due to the particular type of fat and tissue found in a woman’s body.
What Causes Cellulite?
Despite all the stupendous advancements made in modern medicine, the exact causes of cellulite are still not well understood. Conventional wisdom holds that these are some of the potential causes:
- Genetics – This is an easy one. It’s either in your DNA or it isn’t. Things like race, gender, metabolic rate, fat distribution and circulation all affect cellulite deposits.
- Lifestyle choices – Smoking and lack of exercise are definite potential causes.
- Hormones – New research indicates that noradrenaline, thyroid hormones, estrogen, prolactin and insulin are part of the cellulite process.
- Diet – This is a no brainer. If you don’t get enough fiber and you eat too much fat, carbohydrates or salty foods, you are likely to have more cellulite.
- Poor Blood Circulation – If you have poor blood circulation to your connective tissue, it causes swelling. The swelling then stretches the tissue apart allowing fat to bulge through.
- Clothing – If you wear underwear with elastic bands across the buttocks, these types of panties can limit blood flow and may help cellulite form.
If cellulite is in the cards for you, there isn’t much you can do about it; cellulite is going to form somewhere. However, control over how much of the cellulite forms is something women can definitely influence. This all starts with exercise.
Can simple exercises get rid of cellulite?
Sorry, no. There are no super secret exercises to get rid of cellulite. There is no magic yoga pose or stretch to perform that suddenly makes cellulite melt away. However…
Can simple exercises reduce cellulite?
Absolutely. Below, you can find a small list of short, easy to perform, do anywhere exercises to fight cellulite, or at the very least, give you a fighting chance.
As most cellulite collects on women’s hips, thighs, and stomachs, these cellulite exercises help tone and strengthen these trouble spots. The exercises are very simple and can be done while you are watching your favorite TV show, listening to your roommate whine about her clingy boyfriend or waiting for dinner to cook.
Combining a healthy diet with some light cardio work and these exercises, fighting cellulite won’t seem like such a losing battle.
The 20 Minutes, 3 Days a Week Exercises For Cellulite
1st Step: Cardio – Warm up for 2 minutes doing some low intensity walking, cycling or climbing stairs. Don’t go crazy, just work hard enough to get things moving. After 2 minutes, increase the intensity for another 8 minutes. You should be pushing yourself so that you are breathing hard, but still able to speak. After the full 8 minutes, slow down for 2 more minutes.
2nd Step: Strength – Do a single set (10 to 15 reps) of each of the cellulite removal exercises listed below. You won’t need to use weights as you are just getting started, but later on as you get stronger, you will want to add a weight heavy enough to fatigue your muscles. Your muscles are sufficiently fatigued when you feel as though you can’t do one more rep. If you feel you can easily do 15 reps, increase the weight a little bit.
3rd Step: Flexibility – After each strength training exercise, you need to stretch. Do each stretch and hold for 20 seconds. This is vital to ensure healthy muscle building.
Exercises To Fight Cellulite:
Step-Up – Start with both feet on an aerobic step or just a regular step and hold a dumbbell in each hand at your side. Keep your left foot on the step while you step off the back step with your right. Touch the floor with your right foot then press up with your left to bring the right foot back to the step. Repeat for each leg.
After this exercise, follow-up with a lying down glute stretch: Lie face-up with your legs fully extended. One at a time, pull each knee toward your chest.
Dumbbell Squat – Stand with your back straight (use a chair to help if you need) and your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your arms at your side and your palms facing in. Making sure to keep your back straight, bend at the knees and at the hips as though you were trying to sit down. Try not to let your knees move out over your toes.
After this exercise, follow-up with a hamstring stretch: Lie on the ground face-up and with your legs extended, use a towel, a dirty t-shirt or a bungee band to stretch each leg out, the pull each leg in toward your chest.
Thigh Squeeze – Lie on your back with your arms at your side. Slightly bend your knees and raise your legs so they roughly form a 90 degree angle with your body. Place an inflated exercise ball between your knees. Squeeze your legs together slowly against the resistance of the ball as hard as you can. Make sure to keep your knees bent slightly. When you cannot press any further, hold for at least 3 seconds. Then relax back to the starting position.
After this exercise, follow-up with a butterfly stretch: Sit with the soles of your feet touching and place your hands on the top of your inner thighs. Keep your knees out to the sides, and lean forward from the hips.
Lunge – Stand with your feet together and hold a dumbbell in each hand with your arms at your side and your palms facing in. Take a big step out or forward with your right foot. Firmly set your right foot, then lower your left leg until your left knee touches the floor. If you are using proper technique and posture, your right knee should be at a perfect 90 degree angle while your back remains straight. Push off on your right foot and stand up back to your starting position. Repeat with your left leg. A right leg then left leg constitutes 1 rep.
After this exercise, follow-up with a standing quad stretch: Stand up straight and gently pull up with your right foot toward your butt, then the other leg.
Scissors Press – Use an exercise band and tie it loosely just above your knees. Lie on your back and extend your legs straight up until they hover above your hips. Slowly open your legs as far as you can while you use the band as resistance. When the tension becomes too much to pull any more, slowly close your legs back to the original position.
After this exercise, follow-up with a figure-four stretch. Lie face-up and cross your right ankle over your left knee. Then pull your left leg toward your chest. Switch legs and repeat.
Nobody asks to have cellulite. But hopefully, with the right diet and these simple cellulite busting exercises, you can at least keep Mr. Cellulite at bay and running for cover. Good luck!