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Your genetics play a roll in your ability to build muscle.
Supplements, shakes, bars, protein powders, videos and exercise equipment all come in alluring packages and carry the promise to put pounds of rock-hard, bulging muscle on your body. Realistically, it takes hard work, discipline, proper diet and plenty of rest to add muscle to your body. You can thicken up your legs and butt if you consistently participate in strength-training exercises and if you utilize the most effective techniques.
Seated Leg Press
The seated leg press targets your thighs and incorporates your butt muscles. Sit in the seat with the back rest adjusted to whatever angle is most comfortable for you. Place your feet about shoulder width and just above the middle of the foot plate to add emphasis on your butt. Tighten your ab muscles and fully extend your legs to push the foot plate away from you. Slowly lower the plate back down. Do at least three sets of five to eight for heavy sets and 10 to 12 for lighter sets.
Barbell Front Squat
The barbell front squat is an exercise that targets your quadriceps but also hits your glutes. Place the barbell in the squat rack at chest height. Position the barbell across your shoulders and cross your arms underneath it for support. Wrap your hands over the top of the barbell with your upper arms parallel to the floor. Separate your feet to shoulder-width apart, with your toes pointed straight forward. Bend your knees, drop your hips down and back and sit down until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Return to standing and repeat. Do at least three sets of five to eight reps for your heavy sets and 10 to 12 for your lighter sets.
Barbell deadlifts fully incorporate your leg and butt muscles. Place a barbell on the floor and stand behind it with your feet slightly wider than your shoulders. With a straight back, squat down and grip the bar. Tighten your abs, keep your back in a straight line and stand up. Squeeze your butt and do a slight pelvic push into the barbell as you come to your full height. On the down phase, maintain your straight back and return to the squat position as you drop your hips down and back. Do at least three sets of five to eight reps for your heavy sets and 10 to 12 reps for light sets.
Tips for Building Mass
To vary your workout routine for maximum muscle gain, alternate heavy and light training days. On your heavy days, choose a weight that causes you to fail somewhere between five and eight reps. On your light days, choose weights that causes failure somewhere between 10 and 12 reps. Change your exercises every month or two or change the order in which you do your exercises. Another important aspect of muscle building is to allow your body the rest it needs. Overtraining can inhibit muscle growth, so listen to your body. The American Council on Exercise (ACE) says fatigue, chronic muscle aches, irritability and inability to concentrate are all signs you may be training too hard.
Rest and Eat
You also need to feed your body the nutrients it needs to build muscle. Eat small, frequent meals and incorporate some high-quality protein at every meal. Make sure you get your five servings of fresh fruits and vegetables daily and include complex carbohydrates for energy. Although protein is important, too much protein can be stored as body fat. ACE says that you don't need any more than one-and-a-half times the protein recommended by the RDA. For women, the RDA recommends 46 grams and for men it's 56.