What Exercises Can I Do and Still Keep My Curves?

When people think of curves, they generally refer to an hourglass figure with a chest, hips and butt. These body parts are often composed mostly of fat. When women begin a new exercise routine, they may lose some of those curves due to fat loss.

The elliptical is a great cardio machine to help keep your curves. Credit: xavierarnau/E+/GettyImages

Proper cardiovascular training, as well as a good strength-training routine can enhance the muscles in your curviest body parts, allowing you to keep the figure you embrace and still remain healthy.

Tips

Limit cardio exercise and focus on strength training in your workouts for curves.

Cardio Workouts for Curves

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise per week to maintain healthy weight. To keep the curves in your lower body toned, consider exercises that are weight bearing.

Walk on a treadmill at a five to 15 percent incline. Use a stair stepper or elliptical. Avoid doing too much high-intensity cardiovascular activity. Women often fall into the routine of doing massive amounts of cardio and no strength training, which results in muscle loss. Muscle is essential in maintaining curves and keeping your body firm.

Read more: Gym Routine for Weight Loss & Toning Up

Build Your Glutes

Unlike the chest, the butt is comprised of mostly muscle, so with adequate resistance training, you can actually make your bottom rounder and curvier. Do rear leg lifts on a cable machine or with an ankle weight.

Include exercises to get curves without equipment. Try floor glute bridges, where you lie on your back with your knees bent, lift your butt into the air for a second, and then lower it.

Compound, multi-joint exercises like squats, lunges and deadlifts are the most effective exercises. Do three sets of eight to 12 repetitions of each exercise for optimal toning and growth.

Tone Your Abs

Perform planks in your exercises for curves and a flat stomach. For abdominal focus, do crunches on a stability ball, lying leg lifts, and leg lifts on the Roman Chair, a machine where support yourself with your elbows and forearms and lift your legs up to your chest.

To tone the obliques, do twisting exercises like bicycle crunches and seated abdominal twists with a light medicine ball. To minimize muscle growth of the obliques and concurrent thickening of the waist, avoid doing weighted side bends.

Read more: Exercise Regimen to Lose Weight and Tone Muscles

Shape Your Shoulders

Women who are naturally tall or thin may be build more like a pencil and not have a lot of curves. One way to give the illusion of an hourglass figure is to build your shoulder muscles slightly, which makes the waist look smaller in comparison. Do seated dumbbell shoulder presses and lateral raises to work the top of the shoulders in your workout for curves.

To round the front side of the shoulders, do frontal raises and incline dumbbell shoulder press. For the rear shoulders do decline reverse flys and use the Pec-Dec machine. Keep the weight heavy enough to fatigue your muscles by eight to 12 repetitions.

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