Exercise Variety is your Friend

By February 4, 2015Exercise

Three moves to build a better butt and add more exercise variety


You know the feeling. You do the same thing over and over. And Over.

You burn out.

Your enthusiasm wanes.

You plateau. And you know THAT doesn’t need to occur.

So how are you supposed to make progress in something?


Louie Simmons is a big fan of it. Coincidentally, he produces some of the strongest motherfuckers around. At least, in powerlifting.

So we will talk about exercise variety in a pattern you don’t commonly see at most gyms (but will likely benefit you greatly).

Hip Extension

Briefly, for the average gym goer, only a few exercises work your hip musculature. Most of the time, people are lying down to bench press or seated for other things. So here are a few ways to add some exercise variety to your hip extension pattern. As a plus, your ass will look great.

One Legged Deadlift

A woman demonstrating the one legged deadlift to add more exercise variety

The one legged deadlift is a favorite of mine for many reasons.

One reason that might benefit you is that if you can’t deadlift for whatever reason–lack of gym that day, or what have you–you can do this anywhere.

You can scale it down, or scale it up. Scale it down by trying the following:

  • Bending your knee at the start
  • Using a dumbbell in ONE hand
  • Using just your bodyweight.

On the other hand, you can scale it up in the following ways:

  • Add a barbell
  • Use less knee bend
  • Perform from a deficit. (Please don’t try this unless you are advanced or under the care of a watchful eye).

All in all, a good thing to do every now and again.

Step Ups

A woman doing Step Ups for exercise variety

This one is like a distant cousin to the lunge. It also comes with great versatility which is good news for you.

First, here is what not do for a step up:

  • Don’t get a box that’s too high. You want to extend the leg you are stepping with before you step the other foot down to complete it.
  • Don’t get a box that’s too short. Otherwise, you might be wasting your time. You don’t want to waste your time.
  • Don’t use too much weight.

Here is how you can practice scaling it:

  • Use one dumbbell to scale it down
  • Use two to scale it up
  • Use a barbell
  • Use a taller box to step on
  • Add some hip flexion at the top (like the woman pictured)
  • Start with a lunge and step onto the box with the trailing leg
  • Be careful with the last one

 Hip Thrusts

Hip thrusts for greater exercise variety

Popularized by Bret Contreras, hip thrusts are fantastic. Not only do they train the hip extension pattern, but they fit in with the theme of all the previous exercises. They are easy to scale down or up and they do wonders for you. Hopefully you clicked that link, but I will sum up a few pointers for your immediate use. Scale it down as follows:

  • No elevation, like the woman pictured.
  • No weight loaded.
  • One legged versions.

And when you’re ready, scale it up as follows:

  • Elevate your feet
  • Elevate your shoulders
  • Elevate both
  • Add weight via a dumbbell, kettlebell or barbell. Use padding if you use a barbell.


There you have it. Three sweet ass moves for you to use to add a little exercise variety to your life. And build a nice butt in the process. Be safe, and let me know how it goes for you in the comments section.

About Peter Baker

In addition to being a fan of music and heavy metal, I am an avid player of table top RPGs, and I am a personal trainer in Tampa, FL as well as a graduate of the prestigious University of South Florida. Formerly, I was a prefect for House Slytherin.

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