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How to Get Rid of Saddlebags (5 Best Exercises Included)

Saddlebags are the accumulated fats usually found on the side of the hips, thighs, or buttocks. For those with pear-shaped bodies, it makes your hips look wider than what it is. While most women develop saddlebags over time, it is not pleasant to see especially if you are wearing swimsuits or figure-hugging outfits. Some women are genetically prone to have saddlebags, but you can certainly get rid of them with these practical tips.

How To Get Rid of Saddlebags

Eat the Right Kind and Amount of Healthy Food

It is probably sounding like a broken record how much food plays in a person’s overall health and wellness. As the old saying goes, what you eat is what you become. Saddlebags are fats that are not converted into energy. These fats rest on the body parts that are seldom exposed to a physical workout. Eating processed foods contribute a lot in depositing bad fats. Therefore, anything that is pre-packaged or loaded with preservatives should be thrown out from your refrigerator.

Choose The Right Kind of Carbohydrates

tactics for reducing saddlebags

Carbohydrates supply energy to fuel the body throughout the day. Unrefined carbohydrates, also termed as bad carbohydrates, are not entirely absorbed by the system. Examples of these are starchy and sugary foods like pasta, cakes, cookies, and sodas. They will give you a sudden spike of energy, but the rest are deposited as fat on your body.

Snack on Fruits & Vegetables

Not only they are ideal alternatives to snacks and desserts, but they are also rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that help you get rid of respiratory, immune diseases, and even cancer. Green leafy vegetables like kale, broccoli, squash, and spinach aid for better digestion. It is recommended for people with gas problems, heartburn, indigestion, constipation, and diarrhea.

Consume Healthy Fats

Both unsaturated and saturated fats are essential components of a healthy diet. Aside from being a source of energy, healthy fats help the body absorb more nutrients like vitamins A, D, E, and K. Omega-3, a type of unsaturated fat, prevents clogged arteries that may lead to heart attack, stroke, or thrombosis.

Increase Your Protein Intake

best ways to get rid of saddlebags

Protein builds muscles, so increasing your protein consumption will keep the saddlebags at bay. Protein-rich foods like lean meat and saltwater fishes are easier to burn for muscle building. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that people who go on high protein diet are less likely to feel hunger throughout the day than those with low protein consumption.

Drink More Water (You already knew that!)

Not all kinds of liquid drinks are beneficial to one’s health. Sodas and fruit juices packed with artificial sweeteners are bad carbohydrates. Water, on the one hand, is the perfect no-calorie drink! It facilitates better digestion, transports nutrients to different organs and body parts, and regulates and maintains body temperature. Water helps get rid of internal toxins, clears the skin, and enables the growth of nails and hair.

Perform a Variety Of Exercises

Side lunges to increase thigh size

Although all types of exercise (as long as you do it properly) are beneficial, some do not guarantee to get rid of your saddlebags. Modify resistance training routines to focus on larger muscle groups (quads or thigh muscles are perfect). The reason focussing on thigh exercises such as squats is a great idea, is because larger muscles use more calories even while at rest to maintain the muscle tissue – it’s free calorie burning! At the same time, cardio workout such as running, swimming, and cycling are effective intense exercises that surely will help to burn energy and prevent the formation of saddlebags!

Note: Cycling does not strain much of the upper body muscles, but it does help shape and trim the anterior muscles such as the quadriceps femoris and sartorius, as well as the posterior muscles like the hamstrings and gluteus maximus.

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Build Lean Muscle

best tactics for getting rid of saddlebags

Once you have burned off excess fat, it is time to build some lean muscle mass. Saddlebags appear like saturated skinny fat typically seen among aging adults. Ladies who are not into weight lifting can do combinations of lunges, planks, squats, and burpees. You can also experiment on pilates and yoga on less active days. Building lean muscle mass not only helps you look toned, but the body also burns calories each day to keep the muscle tissue alive – it’s free calorie burning!

Combine Workouts With Leisure

It is natural for the body to reach the so-called “plateau” or the state where it seems like you are not losing any pounds. In such cases, combine workout with leisurely activities like hiking, surfing, rock climbing, hiking, or swimming. Indoor activities like Zumba, hot yoga, and running on a home treadmill can also compensate for the downtime. Do not deprive yourself of sufficient rest and sleep so you won’t suffer from muscle strain and overfatigue.

For more efficient workout to effectively get rid of saddlebags, try the combination of the following:

Best Exercises For Getting Rid Of Saddlebags

Inner Thigh Leg Lift

This exercise trims your thighs and glutes. Lie on your right side with the arms folded underneath the shoulders. Ensure that both legs are extended parallel to each other. Slowly lift one leg 12 to 15 days before switching positions.


This exercise strengthens the core muscles. Lie down with the stomach flat on the floor. Slowly lift your body using both arms as support. The body weight should be resting on the arms at a 45-degree angle. Hold this position for about 30 seconds then rest. Repeat at least three times.


This is a simple exercise that shapes the glutes. Simply lie down on your back ensuring that both knees and feet are flat on the floor. Raise one leg while squeezing your hip to the opposite side. Repeat up to 15 times for each position.

Side Lunges

This workout shapes the hamstrings, quads, glutes, and hip abductors. Begin by standing with your feet hip-distance apart. Stretch your arms forward while ensuring that the spine is straightly aligned. Step on one side, moving from a standing to a squat position. Do this on the opposite side and repeat 10 times for each set.


This exercise works out the inner and outer thighs, hamstrings, quads, and glutes. Begin by standing straight with feet hip-distance from each other. Bend your knees at a 45-degree angle while simultaneously raising the arms forward. Go back to the resting position, then repeat the routine for 15 times.

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About the author


Thank you for reading my article! I am Holly Nunan, a mother of three daughters aged four, six and eight. I'm an Exercise Physiologist with a passion for exercise, fitness, raising healthy children and natural and alternative remedies. I have a simple mission to help each reader that comes to our website to take away one new piece of healthy information that they can immediately apply to their life. If I've helped you find that today, it's mission accomplished!