Work That Bootie – Ulitmate Glute Workout

by Marianne  - August 12, 2010

Hi everyone,

Andrew and I have collaborated again. This time we are focusing on a commonly under-trained area of the body – the GLUTES!! You may be thinking at this point of all the squats, lunges and deadlifts you do, but how much do you actually CHALLENGE your glutes?

The workout below is a selection of exercises that I would regularly include in my weekly “heavy” leg routine down in the gym. It doesn’t need to be in the gym, but I like the variety of using barbells in my workouts too as I can work on increasing the weight significantly. The video shows demonstrations of each exercise. We also included how the exercises can be modified depending on the level you are training at.

I would consider myself between intermediate and advanced, so below is an example of a workout I would do for my glutes and legs:

Demo Video:

Barbell Squats (Full and beyond)

  • Starting with a warm up set with 30kg for 15 – 20 reps
  • Set 1 is 12 to 15 reps with 40kg
  • Set 2 is 8 to 10  reps with 45kg
  • Set 3 is 6 to 8 reps with 50 kg
  • Set 4 is 5 reps with 55kg
  • Last Set is 3 – 5 reps with 60 – 62.5kg

Deadlifts (Full)

  • Set 1 is 15 reps with 60kg
  • Set 2 is 12 reps with 70 kg
  • Set 3 is 8 to 10 reps with 75kg
  • Set 4 is 6 reps with 80kg

Bulgarian Squats (intermediate to advanced)

  • Set 1 is 15 reps with 16kg (with step)
  • Set 2 is 12 reps with 20kg (with step)
  • Set 3 is 8 reps with 24kg (without step)

Weighted Glute Raise (new for me with barbell)

  • Set 1 is 15 reps with 30kg
  • Set 2 is 10 reps with 40kg
  • Set 3 is 6-8 reps with 45kg

Stiff-Leg Deadlift

  • Set 1 is 15 – 20 reps with 25kg
  • Set 2 is 12-15 reps with 30kg
  • Set 3 is 8-10 reps with 35 – 40kg

Standing Calf Raises (single leg)

  • Set 1 is 20 reps with 8kg Dumbbell
  • Set 2 is 15 reps with 10kg Dumbbell
  • Set 3 is 8-10 reps with 12kg Dumbbell (burns like mad lol)

I then usually do about 20-30 minutes cardio (10 minutes High Intensity Interval Training, the rest static).  Remember that all of these exercises can be modified to be performed with kettlebells, as I have done in many workouts. I just can’t get the heavy weight needed for this weekly session for my kettlebells.

So there you have it. I don’t see the point in pretending that all I do are my bodyweight and Kettlebell workouts to stay in shape. For me it’s a lot of extra hard work, additional Kettlebell classes and early morning cardio.  Some will probably say I should clean up my diet even more instead, but I just can’t bring myself to eat any less (I already eat clean 80% of the time). Food is both a pleasure and a privilege to me and, as long as I am not greedy or ungrateful then why shouldn’t I enjoy it.  Sometimes you can be too strict on yourself.  It’s about finding what works best for you 🙂

Feel free to leave me a comment with feedback or ask a question, and I will get back with an answer asap.



PS Inspiration for some of these exercises have come from Bret Contreras also known as The Glute Guy whose training methods, Andrew has become a big fan of.


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  1. Hi Marianne, being “relatively” new to your blog, I am watching a lot of your “older” videos, including this one. I also checked the same post on Andrew’s blog. I have a question: as I don’t go to the gym but I work out at home, how could I manage the weighted glute raises (or glute raises without weights) and the hyper extensions at home? Maybe I am asking for too much, but I would love to see a video in which you show how (and if) these exercises can be done at home as well.


    1. Hi Ecto-Friend,

      The weighted glute raises can be substituted with a single-leg weighted glute raise, as see here in one of my VERY old workouts. I have done body weight variations of this exercise where I lift my toes off the ground focusing the burn more on the glutes rather than the hamstrings.

      I will look into other variations of the weighted glute raise in this video though and will include them in a workout for ya 🙂

      As for the hyper extensions, the best variation in to perform this exercise over a stability ball as seen here as well as being able to do a version from the floor. Again I will look into an alternative 🙂

      Meso-Endo-Marianne LOL 😀

  2. Hey Marianne

    I am trying this tomorrow morning. I haven’t used my barbell since April and I have always wondered what your heavy leg days are all about and I hadn’t figured out what to do yet tomorrow! This will be good. I’ll let you know how it works out. Thanks for the insight into what you do on your other days…

      1. Hello Marianne

        Well I did it! I figured out what I wanted to lift the night before and then got things going in the morning… my brain must not have been awake because I didn’t add the weight of the bar to the total so I thought I was going lighter to start but wasn’t (Duh!). Anyways I could have gone heavier but the squats were making my knees creak so I didn’t! I think that I had better settle for higher reps and lower weight with squats yet. The rest of the workout was great… I wasn’t sure how much to rest between sets so I just rested enough to change the weights.
        The glute raises were a little tricky on my own. Getting into position with the bar was not easy. I am going to have to rig something to put the bar onto that I can get under somehow…. Jason actually came down to say goodbye for work while I was in the middle and was a little concerned!

        I have done heavy leg days before when I did STS (Cathe) in Meso 3 but I wasn’t sure that I actually was making any progress with them. What is the thinking adding it into the week? More muscle more fat burn?
        I left out the Stiff Legged Deadlifts and added the Hyper Extensions to my routine. I followed it up with an interval run too. Thanks for the workout!

        BTW I like the new Logo very nice!
        Have a great workout!

        1. Hi Heather,

          Great job! Yeah the glute raises are hard to do on your own, the bar is tricky to position lol!

          I include some heavy weights into the mix for several reasons: Strength, the definition, it boosts human growth hormone (which inturn boosts fat burning and muscle building), variety, and I like the challenge. I used to be bad at squats with my AS, because my sacral iliac joint was always flared up, so my left side really suffered. I am glad to say I am catching up 🙂 I actually prefer barbell squats to KB front squats – find the front squats annoy my back. Probably could do with adding a few hyper-extensions into the mix to improve this, and to improve my deadlifts.

          Had a great workout today thanks 🙂


  3. Hey Marianne,

    Ooh I have not seen the glute raise before, that’s an interesting one.

    We do lots of body weight leg work within my martial arts training. I think one of the best body weight thigh and bum exercises is walking lunges. We sometimes do circuit upon circuit of the gym of those things, it’s my ass that normally seizes up first followed by me not being able to walk when we finally stop. It’s all good though 🙂


    1. Try adding a barbell to the walking lunges LOL, that’ll shape up those buns. This is also a glute guy routine! Or carry 2 Kettlebells, to take it up a notch 😉

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