Cake Cake Cake Cake!

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    No, Not birthday cake but cakes! If you’re inspired by the Rihanna/Chris Brown “Birthday Cake” song and want to show your cakes but they look more like a bowl of oatmeal, try these great tips on firming up your cakes!

    Are you happy with your butt? Most of us aren’t. We think they’re too small, too big, too saggy, too flabby…this list goes on. The right cardio exercise and weight training activities (like squats and deadlifts) can make a difference in your backside, depending on your body type and genetics. Find out the best cardio and strength training exercises for strengthening and toning your glutes, hips and thighs.

    Squats

    One of the best exercises you can do for your hips, butt and thighs and they’re also a functional exercise, helping us build strength for a variety of daily activities.

    Stand with feet hip-width apart and, for added intensity, hold weights at shoulder level or at your sides.
    Bend the knees, and lower into a squat, keeping the knees behind the toes. Imagine that you’re sticking your butt out behind you, but keep the torso upright and contracted.
    Press into the heels to stand up.

    Step-Ups

    Step ups are another great exercise for the glutes. For step ups, place one foot on a step or platform and push through the heel to lift the body up. This is an excellent exercise for the glutes, providing you use a step that’s high enough, although you may need to work up to a higher step if you’re a beginner. You eventually want a height were your knee is at about a 90-degree angle.

    The other key is to concentrate all your weight on the stepping leg. In other words, lower down gently, barely touching the toes of the other leg to the ground. You’ll really feel this when you take it slow and concentrate on the working leg.

    Hiking

    Now the exercises listed above aren’t the only strength moves for the glutes, but we often forget that there are cardio activities that will also engage the backside.

    Hiking is one of those activities and it also burns tons of calories because you’re typically going up steep mountains and maybe even getting into thin air, which requires lots of energy. Also, walking up an incline automatically gets your glutes more involved and, if you’re wearing a backpack, you’re really getting a workout. Plus, you get to see nature at its best. A 140-lb person burns about 390 calories in about an hour.

    If you live in a flat area, try raising the incline on your treadmill to mimic hiking up a hill.

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