The One Butt-Toning Exercise Ciara Swears By
"Sometimes we don’t want to do what we need to do, but what we need to do is often the best thing for us."
It's impossible to think of Ciara without getting inspired to go to the gym. Her songs "1,2 Step," "Work," "Body Party," and "Level Up" make the ultimate workout playlist, her dance moves are killer, and to state the obvious: her abs.
To sum it up, the multi-hyphenate star embodies fitness. That's why Propel Water chose Ciara to perform and co-lead a workout with her personal trainer Decker Davis at the Propel Co:Labs Fitness Festival in Santa Monica, Calif. over the weekend.
Before Ciara got the crowd 1, 2 stepping, InStyle jumped on the phone with the star to get the details on her current workout routine, the best way to build up your glutes, why she doesn't follow health trends, and more.
This event is a fun way to exercise, but it can be hard to get yourself to the gym every day. How do you get motivation to workout?
There are definitely times where I’m like, OK, here we go. Sometimes we don’t want to do what we need to do, but what we need to do is often the best thing for us. Pushing through is what makes you feel the most proud after a good workout, and after I finish working out, it feels like I conquered the world. This feeling helps me get going for the day.
Previously your focus was getting back into shape post-pregnancy. What does your current fitness routine look like?
My daily hour-long circuit workout with my trainer Decker Davis is a combination of cardio and plyometric [jump training] work with a lot of weights as well. It’s a full-on circuit that targets every area from muscle-building to getting my heart rate going to maintain my cardiovascular strength for when I’m performing. I'm always looking to build my glutes, and a good way to do that is doing burst movements like squat jumps with weights and then without the weights. This fires up your muscles more quickly.
I usually have one rest day a week. Sometimes, I do cardio on that day, but other times I just relax. It's good to give your muscles a break.
What's your go-to form of cardio?
I like to bike ride. I hop on my Peloton Bike for a 30 to 45 minute session with my girl Ally Love. She's one of my favorite instructors on their streaming classes. Riding my bike was huge for me when I was losing my baby weight. Combined with working with my trainer, I was doing three workouts a day which is pretty aggressive.
What do you do to relax? Do you have a post-workout recovery routine?
Rest is your best recovery tool. I also like doing bodywork. Getting massages and stretching out is important.
What's your opinion on health and wellness trends? Do you follow any?
I’m a little old school and stick with traditional training. What I love about my trainer is that he finds unique ways to make the workout interesting. For me, it’s about changing the routine because I don’t like doing the same thing over and over again.
As far as following trends, I live by the motto: if ain’t broke, don’t fix it. It’s too much to keep up with anyway, especially with being a mom and working so much. But, to each their own! It’s always fun to try different things and experiment if you have time.
Speaking of experimenting, you switch up your hairstyles so often. How do you choose your looks?
Hair is such an important accessory, like shoes. If you’re shoes aren’t right, your outfit’s not right. So, if your hair isn’t right, your look isn’t right. The beauty of using extensions and hair pieces are that they give me a chance to play without compromising my own hair in the process. Especially being a performer, the less heat on my hair the better. These days I’ve been pushing myself to experiment more, and it’s been really fun trying all of these different hairstyles and creating new looks for myself.
What do you do to keep your hair healthy?
Being an African American woman, the less heat the better for my hair texture. I think that this applies to every woman’s hair, too — whatever race or ethnicity. Wearing extensions and hair pieces is one way of protecting my natural hair. I also make sure to wash my hair routinely, and conditioning it is super important. I worked really hard on growing my hair out, and I’m really proud of how long I’ve been able to get it, so I’m working really hard at protecting it.
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