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Hybrid Athlete’s Tips for Growing Glutes Without Sacrificing Cardio

Hybrid Athlete’s Tips for Growing Glutes Without Sacrificing Cardio
Emily Wilcock
Content Executive5 months ago
View Emily Wilcock's profile

If there's one person you can trust for exercise tips, its all-rounder Lucy Davis. When she isn’t hitting the pavement training for a marathon, you’ll find her in the gym.

With a big focus on HYROX and marathon training over the last couple of months, her usual strength routine has been slightly neglected. Hybrid and cardio exercises have left her noticing a significant decrease in muscle mass across her lower body, and more specifically, her glutes.

Now, Lucy is left focusing on building her glutes while still prioritising hybrid training.

Hip thrusts

  • Set up a barbell with the appropriate weight
  • Take a seat on the floor with your barbell resting above your hip
  • Rest your shoulder blades against a bench and plant your feet firmly on the floor
  • Drive your hips upwards, keeping your chin tucked into your chest
  • Stop when your hamstrings, glutes and back form a straight line
  • Lower the barbell back down to the floor before repeating the movement


  • Load a barbell up with the appropriate weight
  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and grip the barbell with both hands (roughly shoulder width apart)
  • Lift the barbell, driving the weight through your feet and hips until your legs and back are straight, without locking your knees
  • With a slight bend in your knee, hinge at the hip to lower the barbell until it’s at mid-shin height
  • At which point, drive the barbell up again

Step ups

  • Grab a dumbbell and a bench, ideally next to something you can hold on to
  • Place your left foot on the bench and hold a dumbbell in your left hand
  • Put all your weight on your left foot and drive your other foot off the ground until your left leg is straight
  • Slowly return your right leg to the floor and repeat

Dumbbell squat

  • Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart with a dumbbell between your feet
  • With both hands, grab the dumbbell holding it between your legs
  • Driving through your glutes, bring the dumbbell up off the floor until your legs are straight
  • Then slowly lower the dumbbells back down, bending your legs into a squat position


As much as Lucy (along with everyone else) hates Bulgarian split squats, she can’t deny the benefit of them for building her glutes. However, they can be a tricky one to get right.



Bulgarian Split Squats for the Quads  

Lucy has three main tactics when approaching Bulgarian split squats to target the quads.  

  • Keep the movement straight up and down. 
  • Keep your stance narrower and your hips under your shoulders so you can drive straight down and then back up. 
  • Make sure your knee is in line with your toes — this is essential to avoid wobbling.  

Bulgarian Split Squats for the Glutes  

If you want to target your glutes, Lucy says you should approach this exercise a bit differently.  

  • Make sure your stance is wider, keeping your feet further away from the box or step.  
  • Lean over your knee slightly by hinging at the hips.  

Take Home Message 

Operation build back glutes is well on the way. And if anything, it’s only boosting her HYROX ability given Lucy and her sister Meg recently broke a record in HYROX Doubles, finishing with an incredible time of 57:59. Ultimately, the moral of the story is move in a way that suits you. If you love to run, do it. If you want to hit a squat PB, you can do that too.

Disclaimer: This advice is from Lucy Davis, a hybrid athlete – consult a PT if you want full information on how to properly perform a bulgarian split squat.   


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Emily Wilcock
Content Executive
View Emily Wilcock's profile
After completing an internship with Myprotein, Emily returned to university to finish her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management and Marketing. With experience in lifestyle writing, Emily aims to entertain and educate through her work. Her focuses include recipes, real and inspiring stories, and working with writers to help provide easy-to-digest evidence-based research. Her work on recipes has been previously featured in The Supplement magazine, with a particular focus on high-protein, nutritious meals, plus advice on how to properly fuel your body. Outside of work, Emily’s top priority is food. She’s a self-professed star baker and a connoisseur of all things baked. In her spare time, she’s either cooking up a storm, our looking out for the opportunity to try out Manchester’s newest restaurants. But as a huge fan of carbs, if it’s not pasta or pasta-adjacent, she’s not interested. If she’s not in the kitchen, she’s tucked up with a book for an early night, or you’ll find her in the gym working up a sweat. Afterall, all those carbs require quite the appetite.