As someone who has been in the fitness space for over 10 years, and has since become a personal trainer and a gym owner, the one thing I get asked consistently is “How can I grow my glutes?” or “How can I tone my butt more?”. Although it could be a simple breakdown of exercises to add into your routine, I prefer a deeper approach that encompasses many factors to ensure you are successful. I am a hormone and Pre/Post Natal specialist, so I have worked with women in all walks of life, and one thing I have found to be true is stress level, nutrition, hormones, daily movement, sleep, and many other factors can also play a large role in your body’s ability to respond to an exercise program. Here are some things to consider adding into your routine if you are wanting to make big strides in your glute growth this year, and get the booty of your dreams.

Let's get one of the big myths out of the way before we dive into a practical guide to getting that booty in shape. A common concern I hear from women who come to me is that they want to have a more rounded, full butt, but they are afraid of lifting heavy due to the fear of being “bulky”. When in reality, all they are really wanting is to keep their feminine physique. The women that you see that have this “bulky” look work very hard to have that amount of muscle density and definition, and tend to not train for aesthetics, but rather athletic purpose. Your average healthy adult who follows a strength training program would never accomplish this without making drastic life changes and using a very specific training style.

Strength training is one of the most effective ways to not only build muscle, but change your overall body composition to look exactly how you want it to, with enough discipline. Strength training is also extremely effective in burning calories, because unlike cardio, your body continues to burn calories even after your workout, to rebuild the muscle fibers you broke down in your workout. What does this mean exactly? When you walk on a treadmill for 30 minutes and burn 400 calories, after you get off that treadmill your body is no longer burning calories from that run you did, only the baseline calories your body burns to function. When you have a leg day and you burn 300 calories during the workout, even after you carry on with the rest of your day, your body is still burning calories from that workout to recover, equaling in a higher overall caloric expenditure from this one leg day. So have no fear, those heavy weights will only affect the assets we want.

Something a lot of people do not consider when setting goals for their physique, is life outside of the workouts and nutrition. What I am referring to is your stress level, sleep patterns, and how these two things can work in tandem to either get the body of your dreams, or make it feel like you are swimming through mud, upstream, in a category 5 hurricane. Stress level is a tricky thing for adults to manage, but when it begins to affect your hormones, such as your cortisol, testosterone, and estrogen it can become completely unmanageable without changes in lifestyle and behavior. As your stress increases, your sleep will begin to suffer from those long nights of laying in bed with a racing mind and a to-do list a mile long. If you are struggling with losing weight, falling asleep, moodiness or reactiveness, remembering all your tasks (even simple ones), fertility, digestive issues, acne, irregular cycles, and low libido, there is a pretty good chance your hormones are a little wacky.

You might be wondering “how does this have anything to do with “growing my glutes?” and I am here to tell you it has a LOT to do with it. Your hormones can affect how you feel, which we all know is a big part in getting to the gym consistently, but they can also affect how and where your body carries and stores fat. Typically women with high levels of testosterone carry a majority of their weight in their abdomen, have issues with acne, low libido, and can become very tempermental. On the other spectrum, women with higher levels of estrogen carry more weight in their legs and hips, have low libido, irregular periods, and are highly emotional. Higher cortisol can result in face puffiness, sensitivity to caffeine, bloated gut, digestive issues, acne, irritability, and irregular periods. When these hormones are balanced, our body can use its energy to effectively respond to our consistent programming and nutrition, rather than be in a constant state of trying to reach “normal” levels, and your physique will begin to level out and respond exactly how you want it to. While I could bore you with all the science behind this, I would rather give you my top 5 go to suggestions for clients struggling to manage their stress level and regulate their hormones, so you can get a jump on yours.

My Top 5 Ways to Easily Support Your Stress Level

1. No screen time for the first & last 15 minutes of your day

2. No coffee on an empty stomach- at least drink a glass of water first

3. Sunshine for minimum of 10 minutes a day (weather permitting)

4. Prioritizing your meals and eating on time, ensuring your diet includes healthy

fats, carbs, and protein.

5. Prioritizing your meals and eating on time, ensuring your diet includes healthy

fats, carbs, and protein.

Now that we have our stress levels sorted out, let’s talk about growth. In order for you to grow larger glute muscles, your calorie expenditure will need to be adjusted, as will your nutrition. If you aren't looking to lose weight, but just want to get some bigger glutes, you will want to ease up on any cardio classes and opt for more strength training to encourage muscle growth. This change alone can make an impact in your progress, but nothing works faster and more effectively than eating for your goals. If you want to grow or build muscle, you must eat enough calories to feed your body the energy it needs to make that growth happen.

The age of eating kale chips and zucchini noodles has come and gone, and we are learning to love our healthy carbs again. On a molecular level, your body requires carbohydrates and protein to build muscle. Learning how to fuel your body properly can be done in many ways, whether it be with counting your macros, intuitive eating or somewhere in between. A good rule of thumb is to eat .8-1 gram per pound of bodyweight in protein and carbs, and after 4-6 weeks of consistently doing this, decide if you want to increase those numbers to see more growth, faster.

If you are wanting to lose weight while also growing your glutes, an intense cardio class isn’t going to hurt your growth, because your body has extra calories it can burn without affecting muscle mass, but I believe daily walks are a great way to burn extra calories, without the impact of an intense cardio class, and bonus points for the sunshine! You still want to incorporate heavy strength training into your program so that we not only are burning calories during your lifts, but also building that muscle with consistent targeted programming. Your nutritional approach would be similar, except you would use your pound per bodyweight, minus the amount of weight you'd like to lose so that you're in a caloric deficit. Although I am giving some practical tips on how to tailor your nutrition towards your goals, it is always important to consult with a professional and do your own research to ensure you are fueling your body properly.

When I am starting with a new client that is most interested in glute growth, I always include these 3 movements within the glute workouts:

1. Hip Thrusts

2. Romanian Deadlifts

3. Reverse Lunges

There are no “magic pill” exercises, but I find that using these 3 movements, when done with proper form, appropriate weight, and consistency, show great results for a majority of clients. I have included a sample workout down below for you to try out next time you want to get in the gym and grow that booty!

Warmup: 1x

- 5 minute high incline treadmill walk

Glute Activation/Hip Openers: 2x

- Loop band lateral walks; 30 total

- 90/90s; 10 each way

A: 3x

- Hip Thrusts; 12

- Banded Bodyweight Hip Thrust; 20

B: 3x

- Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift; 12

- Single Leg Bodyweight Hip Thrusts; 15 each leg

C: 3x

- Reverse BB Lunges; 10 each leg

- Kettlebell Swings; 20

D: 2x

- Hip Abductor Machine; 10 heavy, drop weight immediately do 15

If you are interested in knowing more about how you can train with me, check out my website and send in a submission form. If you would like to see my clients hard at work, head over to my instagram @theglamglutes to see the latest spotlights. If you would like to know more about our 24-hour gym, Sculpt B’ham, you can check us out at I would love to be your new personal hype woman and build your best booty in 2024!