WHAT IS BOOTY BY BRET?

Booty by Bret is an affordable, flexible, and highly effective glute-building program for women created by the world's foremost expert in glute training, Bret Contreras, PhD, CSCS, and personal trainer for 20 years.

The workouts in this program are the exact workouts used in the Glute Lab by members of Bret’s Glute Squad and are highly efficient to maximize aesthetics, body composition, strength, and athletic goals.

As a member of this program with Booty by Bret, you will receive access to 3 new full body workouts and 2 new optional glute workouts every 4 weeks.  Each new full body workout includes approximately 7 exercises per session and each new glute workout includes approximately 4 exercises per session. Each workout is accompanied by a highly detailed instructional video, and a printable workout PDF.

You can cancel any time or save with an annual subscription.

HOW DOES THIS PROGRAM WORK?

Here are a few notes to help you get started right away:

Your Program

All workouts can be found in the top menu bar under the Your Program or Glute Workouts tab. There you will find your Full Body Workouts and Optional Glute Workouts. New workouts are added to the site every 4-weeks. You can also view all of your workouts for the month in the Dashboard.

New Starter Workouts

If you are beginning the program this week, you may choose to start with the Main Workouts or the Basic Workouts.

Optional Glute Workouts

Booty by Bret offers additional and optional Glute Workouts for members who prefer to train more than three days per week. If desired, please choose 1-2 workouts from the Optional Glute Workout selection to complete your workout week.

Please note: The Main Workouts in booty by Bret are highly efficient and additional workouts are not necessary.

Exercise Library

Please be sure to review Bret's notes and instructional videos every month before starting your new set of workouts.

Detailed demonstrations of the exercises featured in the Workouts can be found in the Exercise Library.

IS booty by bret SUITABLE FOR BEGINNERS?

The Booty by Bret program is appropriate for all fitness levels.  Everyone has to start somewhere, and no one enters the gym knowing it all. Beginners are highly encouraged to spend time learning more about the exercises featured in this program and to adhere to appropriate modifications as needed. As a member of Booty by Bret, you will no doubt increase your strength training knowledge, improve your form, and build confidence in the gym!

Do not worry if you do not know how to perform all of the exercises needed for the Booty By Bret program. Bret provides detailed instructions and video for you to be able to learn and perfect all of the individual exercises needed to follow the program effectively.

WHAT EQUIPMENT DO I NEED?

Most commercial gyms are equipped with everything you need to follow the Booty by Bret workouts.

This program can be done from home with some modifications or substitutions if you do not have everything needed for the workout! These workouts typically utilize barbells, dumbbells, resistance bands, and benches.

The Booty by Bret program encourages a focus on progressive overload, which means a gradual increase over time in the weights used for the workout, the amount of repetitions performed, and/or the quality of the repetitions. Ideally, a member working out from home would have a way to eventually increase the weights used in the exercises. Craigslist and second hand sporting goods stores are excellent places to find workout equipment and many members who work out from home build their home gyms a little bit at a time.

These workouts are too easy. Am I too advanced for them?

Let's say one of my workouts calls for just 12 total sets. Say I have you doing 3 sets of hip thrusts, 3 sets of push-ups, 3 sets of goblet squats, and 3 sets of chin ups. Seems pretty easy, right?

Now, say I have my 125 lb friend Hattie do this workout. She hits the following numbers (in lbs):

Hip thrust 275 x 15, 295 x 10, 315 x 5 Push-up 30, 25, 20 Goblet squat 80 x 20, 90 x 15, 100 x 10 Chin up 15, 12, 10

Would you tell her that her workout was too easy?

Most people don't push know how to push themselves hard in the gym and never come close to reaching their full potential. My programs are based on setting PRs. At first, you may find these workouts to be easy. But after a few months of gaining strength, you won't be thinking this anymore. This program teaches you how to train with proper intensity. If you find these workouts to be easy, chances are you're doing a lot of "junk volume" and not pushing your sets with sufficient effort. You've "trained" your body to train this way, but you will quickly adapt and become very good at wiping yourself out with lower volume workouts.

Reaching advanced levels of strength makes the simplest of programs hard.

I'm used to doing much more volume. How will I make progress on this program?

Many lifters, especially female lifters, do too much volume. Research has confirmed that there's a "sweet spot" of volume, with too little or too much being suboptimal for muscular adaptations. It's a common misconception that the more they exercise, the better results they'll see, when this is not the case. In 25 years of lifting and 20 years of personal training, I've learned that the sweet spot for most lifters is around 12-20 sets per day of lifting, but obviously, many factors interact to determine this amount of volume, including exercise selection, load, effort, frequency, fitness level, age, and especially genetics. At any rate, I have been very successful as a personal trainer by avoiding the crazy high volume regimens and instead focusing on moderate volume protocols with the goal of gaining strength and setting PRs over time. Many of my clients saw immediate, rapid progress when they started training with me and cut back on the amount of exercises and sets they were doing.

How should I warm-up?

Warm-ups are highly individual in that many lifters require just 5 minutes of general warm-up to be ready to start the session, while some others can require 45 minutes. Many of my clients do around 10 reps of lunges, goblet squats, back extensions or DB stiff-legged deadlifts, high knees or rectus femoris stretches, leg swings or lateral band walks, and possibly some foam rolling or SMR, which takes around 5 minutes. Some of my male powerlifting friends who are all banged up take much longer to feel ready.

If it's early in the day and/or cold, you require a bit more warming up than if it's later in the day and/or warm. And some days you'll need more or less time depending on how you feel in terms of soreness, stiffness/tightness, etc. Make sure you do some form of general warm-up before jumping into your specific warm-up sets.

How many warm-up sets should I do?

It depends. The number of warm-up sets will depend on how you feel on that particular day, on the exercise you're performing, on the order of the exercise within the session, on your strength and fitness level, on the set and rep scheme you're performing, and on your individual physiology.

If I'm warming up for squats as the first exercise of the day, I take quite a while to get into it. I may hit two sets of 10 bodyweight squats and then do 135 for 3 reps, then 225 for 2 reps, then 275 for 1 rep, then 315 for 1 rep, then 365 for 1 rep, then I'm ready to go.

For deadlifts, I might perform 3 sets of 10 bodyweight squats prior to pulling, then go straight to 315 for 1-3 reps, then 405 for 1 rep, then 495 for 1 rep, then I'm ready to go.

For hip thrusts, I will perform a couple of sets of 10 bodyweight squats and then jump into 315 for 3 reps, then 495 for 1 rep, then I'm ready to go.

Let's say I'm performing squats, deadlifts, and hip thrusts all in the same workout. I will do the squat warm-up I mentioned above and do my squat sets. But then I'm primed and warm, so I'll only do 1 warm-up set for deadlifts with 405 for 1 rep. After my deadlifts, I can go right into my hip thrust sets without doing any specific warm-up sets.

I never need any warm-up sets when I'm performing rows. For chin ups, I will do a couple of sets of lat pulldowns and then hang from the pull-up bar prior to performing my sets. For bench press, I take more time warming up. I do the bar or 5 reps, then 135 for 5 reps, then 225 for 2-3 reps, then 275 for 1 rep, then I'm ready to go. For "smaller" lifts performed later in the session, I won't do any warm-up sets and will jump right into my work sets.

Hopefully this gives you some insight as to how individualized warming up can be. Tweak this to suit your body and pay attention when you train so you can make proper adjustments over time.

What about a cool down?

If you like performing a "cool down" activity like stretching or walking, then go ahead and do it. But it's not necessary. Your body cools down just fine when you stop training.

How do I properly deload on your programs?

My system is strategic and methodical. It took many years of honing to figure out, and I'm happy to have greatly improved upon it over my 20 year personal training career. Your first week of each program is a deload week. This doesn't mean you take the week off; it means that you don't push it that hard and focus on practicing the lifts and figuring out what loads you'll be using for the following week. In general, your deload weeks will be around 50-60% as hard as the last week in the program. So week one, think 50-60%, week two, think 70-80%, week three, think 80-90% and week four, think 90-100%.

How is this done, specifically? Well, you don't have to overthink it. On week one, just don't push your sets that hard, meaning don't go as close to failure on your sets. This doesn't mean that on week one you can't do anything hard, but use common sense. Deadlifts drain you more than any lift, so definitely don't do anything hard on deadlifts on week one. Squats and hip thrusts and bench and chins aren't quite as hard, so you can push these a bit harder, but still nothing to failure. Single joint lifts like lateral raises, curls, and lateral band walks don't take much out of you, so you can go hard on these exercises.

Then on week two, you can do a more typical workout, but without going to failure on anything. On week three, go to failure and push it hard, but leave some room in the tank. On week four, crush it and go for PRs - try to set some records.

Please do not write deloads off as "wimpy." Too many lifters fail to be strategic in their training, fail to utilize self-control, and they never end up seeing results. Deloads accomplish several key things - they allow hormones and neurotransmitters to normalize, they allow nagging little injuries to repair, and they provide a psychological reprieve, all while you practice your technique get the muscles prepare the body for future gains.

I want more volume for a certain body part. Can I add in some additional stuff?

Sure, just don't overdo it. In all of my programs, I give my clients 10 minutes of "free-time" at the end of each workout to add in some things they feel they need more of. Let's say you feel you could use some more delt work in your program. At the end of one of the training sessions during the week, you could bust out a couple of sets of lateral raises, front raises, and rear delt raises. Just don't exceed the 10-minute window as that limit will prevent you from doing too much and hampering recovery.

Can I throw in extra workouts into your program?

In general, no. Definitely don't do any additional big lifts like squats, deadlifts, bench press, chins ups, military press, and even heavier hip thrusts. But if you want to throw in some extra glute or maybe even some extra delt work, you could pull this off as long as you don't do anything crazy. For example, you could do certainly add in session once or twice per week consisting of a few sets of bridges or frog pumps, delt raises, lateral band walks, and rear delt raises. That wouldn't detract from the following day's training session. Always consider your next training sessions and make sure you're recovered for them. You won't make progress if you don't gain strength, and you won't gain strength if you aren't recovered from your workouts.

I don't feel a certain exercise working. Should I substitute it or keep at it?

Well, some exercises you may not "feel" in any one area. For example, I don't really know where I "feel" deadlifts the most; they're just hard all over. Moreover, I feel squats mostly in my quads, and when I hip thrust heavy, I feel my quads and hammies almost as much as my glutes. Yet I still perform all of these because I know that getting stronger at the big lifts makes me more muscular.

That said, never stick with an exercise just because you think you have to. If something doesn't feel right, then nix it. Maybe you can come back to it later, or maybe you never do. No exercise is mandatory to perform for results. There are plenty of great exercises to go around. When you ditch an exercise, do something in its place that works similar muscles and/or involves a similar pattern.

HOW MANY DAYS PER WEEK SHOULD I WORKOUT?

Great question!  Booty by Bret is designed to be highly efficient and deliver the results you are looking with minimal time spent in the gym.

The base plan for the workouts is 3-days per week and each workout will take about 1-1.5 hours to complete, depending on individual habits.

Bret advocates a "less is more" approach and his personal clients see the best improvements following this method.  However, some people do prefer to exercise more frequently and for this reason this program offers additional optional glute workouts.

Rest and recovery is a crucial part of any well-designed program. You may be surprised to learn that additional cardio is not needed with this program.  Eat wisely to fuel your workouts and follow Bret's advice along with the Booty by Bret workouts and you will be on the road to achieving the increased strength and improved body composition results you desire.  No pricey in-person training sessions in the Glute Lab are necessary!

How much should I progress each week?

This is impossible to say. It depends on gender, age, current strength and fitness levels, genetics, and the exercise in question. But what I can tell you is that you won't be able to increase 10 lbs per week. You won't be able to increase most lifts 5 lbs per month for that matter. Think about it. This would equate to 60 lbs per year. This can happen with big lifts like squats and deadlifts and hip thrusts for your first year or two of training, but it won't continue indefinitely. If so, you'd be superman within a decade. You also won't get 1 more rep each week with the same weight. You won't be able to get 1 more rep per month on most lifts.

Consider chin ups. Achieving 10 chin ups is very hard and is a feat that many people never achieve - even by lifers who have been training for years. The rate of improvement is lackluster with chins, but with hip thrusts, it's not so bad. You could easily start out with 135 lbs for 10 reps and end up hitting 30 reps within a few months of training, but eventually you'll hit a plateau.

Just try to bump things up gradually over time. Five more lbs here, 1 more rep there. If you're doing 3 sets of an exercise, consider your 3-set-total or your 3-set-volume-load. Let's say you're doing squats and you perform 135 lbs for 3 sets of 5 reps on week 2 of your program. Maybe on week 3, you hit 135 x 6, then 5, then 5 reps. You should be proud of this, as you'll have set a PR. Then on week 4, maybe you end up hitting 135 for 3 sets of 6. If so, this is a big improvement. It's these little progressions that accumulate over time and lead to big changes in strength and physique.

You don't write down percentages of 1RM to be using. How do I know how much to lift?

If you're a strength training researcher or savvy personal trainer, you'll notice that people vary considerably in the number of reps they can get with a certain percentage of 1RM. For example, I just had 12 women do max reps on hip thrusts with 50% of 1RM. The range was 16-29, meaning that one subject got 16 reps and another got 29 reps with the same relative load. With 80% of 1RM on certain lifts, some subjects can get 5 reps while others can get 10 reps. If I prescribed 3 sets of 6 reps with 80% of 1RM, the first subject wouldn't come close while the other would find it to be too easy. For this reason, I avoid prescribing percentages. What you need to do is simply establish a baseline and then bump things up little by little.

Say you underestimate your loading, you'll end up doing more reps on your last set (assuming you do an AMRAP set). The following week, you'll know to bump up the load. Say you overestimate your loading, you'll end up falling short of the total reps. You'll end up cutting back a bit on the load.

The important thing is that you're gaining strength and setting PRs. You won't always nail the prescribed set and rep schemes. Think of them as recommendations, but you won't always end up doing exactly what I suggested.

What if I can do more reps on my last set? Should I stick to the program, or rep out to failure?

I alluded to this in the last question. This is called an AMRAP (as many reps as possible) set, and it's a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it will ensure that you went to failure and went all out, thereby theoretically recruiting all the available motor units in the muscle. However, training to failure has been shown to be lackluster in the literature, meaning that you do not have to carry your sets out until you fail in order to see great results. What's worse, if you train a lift or muscle frequently, an AMRAP set could fatigue you to the point where you're not recovered by the time you perform the exercise again. In this case, it'd prevent you from having a stellar workout and a PR would be unachievable.

IS it okay if I superset the workout?

Sometimes it's okay to superset. This means that you can do an exercise and then immediately move into the next exercise and then rest. Sometimes it will speed up the workout without interfering with performance. Just make sure that if you do superset, you pick noncompeting exercises. For example, squats and bench press are okay to superset, or hip thrusts and rows. But you wouldn't want to do this for deadlifts and chins, since both use the lats a lot. Or for military press and dips, since both utilize the triceps.

SHOULD I PERFORM THESE EXERCISES AS A CIRCUIT?

No, unless otherwise stated in your workout materials. Please complete all sets of any given exercise before moving on to the next movement.

What tempo should I utilize?

Tempo refers to the cadence you use when lifting. Sometimes you'll see things like 4/1/2/0 which means that you'd lower the weight for a count of 4, pause for a second, lift the weight for a count of 2, then repeat with no pause in between reps. Don't think about tempo when you lift, it just throws you off. The only time I want you to pay attention to tempo is when you're performing pause reps or accentuated eccentrics. In that case, I'll spell it out for you and tell you what to do. All other times, just lift. Don't be super slow with your reps; you want an explosive concentric/rising contraction and a controlled eccentric/lowering contraction. You always want to control the weight and lift in a smooth manner. Some exercises have more range of motion and will therefore take longer to carry out than others.

HOW MUCH CARDIO SHOULD I BE DOING WITH THIS PROGRAM?

If you like doing cardio, you can and should add some in, but know that it can interfere with your training sessions. This is actually debated in the research (whether or not endurance training interferes with strength training), but just use common sense. You’ll never be your best at running marathons and your strongest at the same time. Obviously, there’s a point where the body cannot become the best it can be at one thing if you’re giving it mixed signals by telling it to be good at two opposing things. So don’t go crazy on the cardio. Do “relaxing” cardio sessions where you’re not striving for records and pushing it too hard. Jogging interferes with muscular adaptations more so than cycling and walking. If you don’t like cardio and are active in your daily life, don’t feel compelled to do much of it at all. Your heart will be healthy from all the walking and non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT – such as cleaning the house, running errands) and lifting.

I would prefer for you to limit your cardio to three 30 min sessions per week, but sometimes you may want to go for that big hike or compete in something. If and when that happens, adjust your training program. Don’t go for a deadlift PR the day after performing a 12-mile obstacle race – it won’t happen!

You may be wondering at this point, but how can I lose body fat without doing tons of cardio? By eating properly and gaining strength. Cardio is overrated for weight loss.

You don't program much ab work. Can I add some in?

This is true. The abs are incorporated many of the exercises we'll commonly be doing, so they'll be strong. Seeing your abdominal definition has much more to do with getting lean than developing big abdominal muscles. However, you will develop stronger and more muscular abs if you train them directly, so if that is a goal of yours, definitely add them into your "free 10-minutes" at the end of some of your training sessions. I recommend performing 2 sets of 2 different ab exercises 2 times per week. It doesn't take a lot of volume since they're getting hit during the regular workouts.

I WAS PLANNING ON COMBINING THIS PROGRAM WITH ANOTHER ONE. IS THAT OK?

Booty by Bret is meant to be implemented as a standalone program. Given how difficult the workouts are, Bret does not recommend that you perform other weight lifting workouts at the same time. Ample recovery time is an important component of seeing progress in the gym.

HOW MUCH SHOULD I BE RESTING IN BETWEEN SETS?

Rest 3 minutes with “big” lifts such as squats, deadlifts, bench press, chins ups, and hip thrusts. When going for a big PR, you may even want to rest more than 3 minutes. When performing “medium” lifts like rows, push-ups, and back extensions, rest 2 minutes in between sets. “Small” lifts like curls and tricep extensions and lateral raises and lateral band walks may only require 1 minute of rest. But don’t feel the need to use a stopwatch and be super strict with rest times; research has shown that going by feel leads to the best results. If you listen to your body, you’ll know when you’re recovered and ready for the next set.

I didn't set any PRs this month and am very frustrated. Does this mean it's not working?

No, it does not. It's a normal phenomenon with adaptation. The body works in waves. Progress is never, ever linear. Not for strength, not for weight loss, not for fat loss, and not for muscle growth. Get comfortable with stagnation periods and know that it's just part of the iron game.

I NEED AN EXERCISE SUBSTITUTION. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

No exercise is mandatory to perform for results. There are plenty of great exercises to go around. When you ditch an exercise, do something in its place that works similar muscles and/or involves a similar pattern. You can email admin@bretcontreras.com if you are in need of assistance with this.

What kind of diet should I follow?

There are many good ways to eat in order to achieve your goals. In general, you want to hit your caloric goals first and foremost. You want to consume adequate protein (this can range from .8 grams/lb of lean bodymass to 1 gram/lb of bodyweight). Some people don't get enough protein but some people consume too much to the point where it makes it hard for them to hit their caloric goals. Carbs and fat are pretty interchangeable. Yes, you need to hit a minimum amount of fat each day (for example, 40 grams minimum), but you could go much higher than this if you lower your carb intake. Pay attention to how you feel to determine whether higher carbs or higher fats feel better to you. You want to consume whole, minimally processed foods most of the time (like 80% of the time), but you also want to leave some room for foods you crave (20% of the time). Don't feel guilty consuming "junk food" in moderation. It helps with adherence. That said, if you don't crave anything, then no need to indulge.

Flexible dieting/IIFYM (if it fits your macros) has been immensely helpful for many people by creating a long-term, sustainable eating strategy. However, prescribing macros doesn't work well for everyone, as many people can't stick to them consistently. These folks are better suited working on developing habits and an improved mindset. In addition, weighing and tracking and counting can become addictive and become problematic; it can negatively impact your quality of life. The ultimate goal is to be able to eat intuitively while making progress and inching your way toward your ultimate goals.

I feel stiff and really sore. Should I take the day off, modify the workout, or just push through it?

Always err on the side of caution. When in doubt, take the day off. Hindsight is always 20/20. Almost every time I've hurt myself in training, my body was trying to tell me something but I was too stubborn to listen to it. Don't be like this. Pay close attention. Many times, you can warm-up and end up feeling much better and ready to rock and roll, but don't be foolish. Your body should feel good most of the time, not beat to smithereens. Always know that you can and should modify training sessions depending on how you feel. Never push through "bad" pain. You intuitively know when something is somewhat normal and when something is off. Sometimes I warm up and still feel like crap, and I end up just doing some light sets for glutes or delts or whatever and then calling it a day.

The goal is to keep the goal the goal. If you hurt yourself, your new goal will be to rehabilitate and get back to baseline.

I'll be traveling during some of the month. What should I do?

First, enjoy your trip. Don't stress out about your workouts. You can maintain strength very easily, and you can maintain muscle even easier. Try to stay active and walk a lot. This will prevent you from gaining weight, as most people eat more when away (the assumption here is that you're not trying to gain weight, of course). If you can get to a gym, great. Do as much of the prescribed workout as possible, and make substitutions when needed.

If you can't access a gym, do bodyweight workouts consisting of bodyweight squats, push-ups, Bulgarian split squats, lunges, frog pumps, single leg hip thrusts, frog reverse hypers, side lying hip raises, and extended range side lying hip abduction. If you have someone that can hold onto your ankles, do Nordic ham curls and back extensions. You can also do partner rows if that person is strong enough to hold you up. If you have mini-bands, do various lateral band glute exercises.

Ideally, you'll be able to make it into the gym at least one day per week. This will allow you to maintain your strength and coordination on the lifts. You can do quick 20-min bodyweight workouts 3-5 days per week to keep your muscles primed. If you want to just enjoy your trip and avoid exercise altogether, try to have this week come right after a very hard week of training; this is known as functional overreaching. In this case, you're purposely/strategically overdoing it, knowing that you'll have some time off for the body to repair and supercompensate.

BILLING, CANCELLATIONS, AND OTHER INQUIRIES

Billing will occur every 30-days after the first month's charge.  If you would like to cancel at any time, please do so before your next billing cycle and access to the program and future billing will cease immediately. ACCESS TO WEBSITE WILL END EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY AFTER CANCELLATION. PLEASE DOWNLOAD ANY WORKOUT LOG OR PLAN PDF'S YOU WISH TO KEEP BEFORE CANCELING YOUR MEMBERSHIP TO THIS PROGRAM.

Please note that refunds will not be issued for any reason unless otherwise stated.

If you would like cancel your membership plan at any time, you can most easily manage your account by logging in and going to My Account. If you have any issues with the cancellation process, please email: admin@bretcontreras.com and Booty by Bret administrator will be happy to assist you.