Super Amanda wrote this wonderfully informative article on How To Get an Hourglass Figure, for all body types. It's hailed as "The most googled article on the Hourglass Figure three years running."
Dita von Teese, being a hot hourglass
with the aid of a corset
So what IS an hourglass figure? It's defined as having your waist measurements being around 10" less than your hips and tits. This was an ideal ratio in the old days, and is still touted as the ideal among celebrities...though Amanda raises a great point about celebs who don't have hourglass figures still fudging their measurements to make it seem like they do.* In reality I find a lot of the fashion magazines glomming on to the rectangle shape for women, which may be other people's interests, but not mine.
Why? I'm a mean person, but a woman with no boobs, no hips, and no waist? From the back, she looks like a boy, and drag queens always have better legs.** But I'm biased, of course.
I've been lucky enough to be blessed with an hourglass. When I'm not eating everything in sight and actually going to the gym on a semi-regular basis, like a healthy person should, my measurements float the 34-25-35. Lord knows I love my padded bras, which usually round out the top half. Right now I'm taking up a bit more time (ha haaa) and floating the 35-27-37, because I had pasta for lunch
I've been meaning to get back into the workouts for a long time now, and with my recent addiction to trapeze (yes, I may be insane), I'm finding it more and more needed.
This article has wonderful tips and Do's and Don'ts for those interested in working out to either achieve an hourglass shape, or enhance the one they have. Especially the part on pilates and yoga thickening out the waist. I always thought this, and heard it from half of the trainers I worked with when I worked in a gym (after losing around 40lbs via 'diet and exercise'). Working the obliques typically thickens out the waist, but all the pilates trainers say that it doesn't! Super Amanda sums it up nicely, "If you are seeking a more hourglass figure through Pilates...look and see if your teacher has a noticeable hip to waist and/or an hourglass figure themselves and then judge the veracity of their opinions before investing money..."
Check out the article and make some changes to your routine!
As always, I feel the need to state something PC like 'love the body you have', which I feel is so cliche that the eye skips over it. My stance is that if you feel you could improve yourself, your fitness, your looks, your life, DO IT and shut up. I hate it when people disregard 'body issues' with a 'but you're PERFECT the way you are!' or any number of 'skinny bitch' comments. If you've got no boobs, your options are: get a padded bra, dress to flatter what you have, accept it, or buy them. Pick one and do it. If you're carrying a few more cookies than you'd like, you can: stop eating cookies, start watching what goes into your mouth, get a healthy amount of exercise. If you have no tush to speak of: Padded undies! If you exercise regularly, watch what you're eating, and aren't losing weight? See a trainer or nutritionist, you may be doing something wrong.***
If you think it's perfectly fine to be whatever level of boobed, butted, or curved you are? Rock it. If you're healthy, you're good. The previous paragraph clearly does not apply to those deliciously curvy ladies who are cool with it.
It's not rocket science.
That mini-rant being said...I'm definitely cutting down on the oblique core work. Not killing my crunches because the toning is necessary, or the captain's chair because I need the lower core for trapeze, but I'm going to focus more on upper and lower body right now. I dance enough for the core to be regularly engaged aside from my gym time, and I really need to be able to actually do pull-ups again.
Oh yeah, and more cardio to burn off all those cookies.
~ Red Herring
* Mmmm, fudge.
** I find this both unfair and amazingly awesome.
*** Seriously. If you're burning more calories than you consume on a daily basis you will lose weight. You could be misjudging input/output or have other health issues that are in the way. Women 18-24 of an average weight and activity level burn approximately 1500-1800 calories daily, just existing. You may be above or below this very general measurement. You will need to drop your caloric intake from the recommended 1800-2000 to 1500-1800 and work in 30+ minutes of cardio daily. These are approximate numbers.