Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cellulite Reduction Exercises (Part One)

It seems like I’ve caught myself in the middle of a somewhat accidental series on cellulite reduction…the word just keeps ringing in my head. The more I’m writing about ways to get rid of cellulite, the more I realize how expansive this topic really is. You can check through my archives to find out several different causes of cellulite (even though I don’t feel as though I have adequately covered this enough either), as well as ways to diminish cellulite through proper nutrition. Being the natural-minded, organic-minded, holistic-minded person that I am, I always believe it’s better to go the all natural route to eliminate the ol’ cottage cheese thighs instead of going straight to the chemicals and different things. But don’t get me wrong, I have NOTHING against the different cellulite creams and so forth that are available on the market, and in time I will review some of those different anti cellulite products here on this blog, but I definitely have a substantial amount of reading, studying, and researching to do before I tackle such a vast subject. I always like to put that statement out there so that some people who may think I’m “preaching” only natural cellulite remedies can know that I am an advocate of WHATEVER works, as long as it doesn’t totally destroy you in the process. Many of you that have been with me for a while can attest, I definitely prefer the “no-pain” approach first, as in no surgery, since I am horribly averse to needles, and scalpels, and practically any type of medical equipment designed to invade my space (LOL). I would much rather choose a different (and more natural) approach to diminishing cellulite than going “under the knife”, so to speak. I can only speak from experience, and I have never personally undergone any surgical procedure to remove cellulite, so I can only speak from a limited perspective on that end, but at the same time I don’t want to rule anything out as a possible cellulite cure, because hey, we’re all in this together. The more I’ve been studying and scouring the Web, the more I have realized that there are way more people who are dealing with the cellulite problem than those who are not. Many of our most famous actors and actresses are actually concealing a little cellulite of their own. You don’t see it many times when you look at photos of celebrities, because they know how to hide it very well (Photoshop, anyone?). Yep, that’s right, many of these celebrities’ photos are touched up, airbrushed, and so forth so that their flaws aren’t as visible as those of us who don’t have this kind of help at our disposal. It’s actually a big bunch of pretense, you know? So many people look up to those celebrities and think that they have no flaws, but in reality there are probably (proportionately) just as many celebrities with cellulite as there are us normal folks…in a relative sense—I think you understand what I’m saying.

At any rate, on to the point of this post…I know I end up rambling many times. Writing these posts is like therapy for me sometimes. But the main point of the post was to deal with cellulite reduction, and the importance of exercise as a component in your overall “plan of attack” to reduce cellulite and get that orange peel skin out of your life! As the post title suggests, we’re going to talk about how to exercise for cellulite reduction. A lot of people ask about aerobic exercise and the role it should play in reducing cellulite. They wonder if it’s an effective cure, or if it’s a waste of time. My thought has always been, more exercise is always better than less, more information on how to properly eat is better than less, more cardiovascular workouts are better than less, and more muscle building exercises are better than less. A strong body is a healthy body. Now if you’re a woman, that doesn’t mean that you have to look like the female version of Arnold Schwarzenegger (although that’s your prerogative and if you want to look like that, then hey, knock yourself out). I’m simply saying that doing strength training exercises will always be a good deterrent to cellulite formation, due to the fat-burning power of muscles that are in shape. It has been proven that even while the muscles are at rest, and no exercise is being done, if your muscles are more fit and strong through weight training (light or heavy), they burn fat at a higher rate even while at rest. So it makes sense to focus some of your strength training efforts on your hips, thighs, and buttocks to have those muscles burning fat instead of falling victim to the accumulation of fat within the fat cells, causing the dimpled appearance of cellulite. I almost hesitate to say this, but one of the most effective exercises you can do is just simple squats. I’m not even talking about squats with weights; I’m talking about squats with no resistance except your own body weight. The best way to do squats is to stand with your feet shoulder width apart, your toes pointing very slightly outward. Once you’re in this stance, just simply act like you’re sitting down in a chair and squat until your upper thighs are parallel to the poor. Make sure that your shins stay perpendicular to the floor, so that you don’t put too much pressure on your knees. If you start noticing that your knees are advancing past your toes when you squat, you’re putting too much pressure on those patellar tendons (I think that’s how you spell it). Also, you will need to keep your back straight. Don’t squat too far at an angle to where your butt is protruding way out and your back is no longer perpendicular to the floor. Also, keep your head up, looking straight ahead. I know the temptation will be for you to look down at your legs or whatever, but just keep your head looking straight ahead. If you simply commit to doing 4 sets of 25 of these types of squats (100 total) every other day, you will truly build a foundation of lower-body strength that will enable you to tackle the more complex exercises which can target the more cellulite prone problem areas. One more thing to mention in this regard…make sure to stretch before doing these squats…you’ll thank me later. And also, be sure to consult a physician before starting any type of exercise routine, especially if you’re eager to get going on some specific cellulite reduction exercises; don’t let your eagerness get the best of you to where you skip out on taking the necessary steps to approach your cellulite reduction efforts safely. Well, that’s all for now…I have managed to write another “epic” (LOL), and it’s only Part One, so I’m signing off. Have a great one!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Cellulite Reduction and You

As I continue in my journey of learning the various available methods of cellulite reduction and the role that each one plays, I have found that you cannot become too compartmentalized in your approach to diminishing cellulite. As far as cellulite reduction methods are concerned, trust me, more “ammunition” is better than less. It is better for you to adopt a broad base of methods, treatments, products, etc. to fight cellulite rather than just pigeonholing yourself, so to speak, with only one type of method or procedure. Those of you who have visited my blog before will note that I am the first one to advocate simple diet and exercise as one of the most long-standing and effective anti cellulite recipes out there. Strength training, especially in the lower body area where the “scene of the cellulite crime” is located, is a definite plus to help boost circulation and increase the effectiveness of lymphatic drainage. If you are not familiar with what lymphatic drainage is, I recommend you read my previous post about cellulite reduction to get a better picture of what it’s all about, but in short form, the more effective your body’s lymphatic drainage system is, the easier it will be for toxins to get flushed out of the body, creating a healthier overall look for your skin. Some people are just bottled up with toxins because their diet is so poor and they live sedentary lifestyles. That’s a combination that has been proven to lead to a low quality of physical health and an early death. Nobody wants that! So, in most of the posts on this blog, you’ll see a recurring theme, and it is that of the necessity of diligence, discipline, and commitment to your goal of cellulite reduction. Sorry to say, but there are no free lunches where this thing is concerned…it is going to take some WORK. But the great thing about it is, when you commit to doing the work that it takes to facilitate cellulite reduction, day in and day out, week in and week out, you will actually find fulfillment in the work itself, not just in the end result. All of a sudden you will become motivated by the fact that you’ve been taking action, and it begins to feed on itself, and your efforts begin to snowball, and do you know what happens? You develop momentum, which is an absolute key to reducing cellulite, or any other objective for that matter. So what am I saying in short form? I’m really just saying that the real cellulite remedy is just plain and simple, common sense, real deal WORK. And that’s never easy. But think about it: How many desirable things in life are actually handed to us on a platter? Not many, and most of the time if it comes easy, it also goes easy, and there’s not too much permanence to what we obtain. The reason why is because in our efforts to achieve fast weight loss, or pursue some wonder-working cellulite eraser, we skip the lessons that are to be learned at each step in the process. You never develop the work ethic that’s required, you never develop the internal discipline that’s required, and you never develop the steadfastness that is required to maintain the victory over cellulite that you may achieve, however temporary that victory might be. Most things that come quick are short-lived. But if you were to commit to a butt-kicking exercise program, or some kind of exercise regimen that could accompany the other treatments or products that you might try, such as anti cellulite pants, or a cellulite patch, or any type of cellulite treatment in general, you would be that much more well-rounded in your approach to cellulite reduction.

Now even though I have spent a considerable amount of time talking in a general sense about cellulite reduction, I did want to emphasize very how important your water intake is to reducing the appearance of cellulite. Water, as you know, comprises about 75-80% of the body’s physical makeup (I’m going off the top of my head on this one but I know that this claim can be substantiated somewhere on the Web), and is one of the most important elements of reducing cellulite that you can implement into your diet. If you are thinking that you can get rid of cellulite but yet drink nothing but sodas and caffeine-laced products, you are truly shooting yourself in the foot. Even in my post about endermologie I talked about how water intake played a vital role in creating a more effective overall treatment for cellulite, due to water’s ability to hydrate the skin, and give the skin its much-needed support as far as making it more supple and smoother. Water is also a vital ingredient in eliminating toxins from the human system, which as I have explained previously (so much that I sound like a broken record), you have to do in order to keep your fat cells from retaining those toxins, becoming engorged, and then damaging the connective tissue surrounding them, thus creating the “perfect storm” setup for the cottage cheese thighs to emerge. My suggestion, or advice, or whatever I can call it without getting into legal trouble (see disclaimer below--LOL) is that you should drink an average of eight to ten 8-oz. glasses of water every single day. This sounds like a lot, and it sounds difficult, but it’s easy if you break it down into manageable chunks. Drink one glass when you first wake up, and then one glass about once every hour (on average), and then you will have accomplished your goal without feeling like you’re a fish. You will be surprised at the number of positive benefits you will get out of this, and many of these benefits will be somewhat ancillary (your face will have more of a “glow”, etc.), but they will be well worth your effort. They will also contribute greatly to the reduction of cellulite by virtue of water’s ability to eliminate toxins from your system.

All in all, the major key to cellulite reduction, if I may state it again, is that of diligence and patience in the efforts you are making to get rid of cellulite. Maintain that attitude every day, and cellulite reduction will be one step closer to becoming a reality every day as well.