Did you know that one of the best ways to burn calories is by exercising your legs? Your legs have large muscle groups, which means that you are likely to expend more energy to exercise these muscles. Today we are going to focus on some intensive strength training exercises for your legs. Get ready to burn some calories!
Know Before You Go
Do a 10-minute warm up before your workout. Walk or jog around your block or in place in your living room, or dance around to 3 of your favorite songs. If you have access to a treadmill, walk at a slow speed (I recommend 3.5 mph) and at a high incline (8.5-9.0). Drink water between each circuit to stay hydrated, and stretch for 10 minutes after the workout.
It’s OK if this workout is challenging for you… if you keep this up just 2x per week, in a month or so this will likely be easy peazy.
-free weights (8 lb), balance ball
Circuit 1 – Do 3x Through
A) The “Peeing Dog” – Begin on all fours on your mat. With control, lift your right knee up and out to your right side. Keep your knee bent the entire time. With control, return your knee to your mat. Repeat 15x, and then switch knees and repeat 15x more.
B) The “Toe Tapper” – Begin by facing the bottom step of a flight of stairs. Rest your left foot on the bottom step, while your right foot is on the ground. In an explosive motion, switch feet so that your right foot is resting on the step and your left foot is on the ground. Repeat nonstop for 30 seconds, alternating legs as you go.
C) The “Lunge Plunge” – 15 lunges across the room. Don’t let your knees go past your toes!
Circuit 2 – Do 3x Through
D) The “Power Pusher” – Hold 8 lb weights just above each shoulder. Begin by lowering into a squat. Don’t let your knees go past your toes. Stick your chest out, and keep your back straight. In an explosive motion, rise up to standing and push the weights overhead. Use the momentum from your legs as you stand to push the weights overhead. If your arms get tired quickly, you are not doing this exercise correctly. Repeat 12x.
E) The “Round and Round We Go” – Lay on your side on your mat with your left leg resting atop your right. Lift your left leg to a 45 degree angle to the ceiling. Holding this position, trace 20 small circles with your left leg. Turn over, and switch legs to repeat 20x more.
F) The “Invisible Chair” – Begin with your back against a wall holding 8 lb weights at your sides. Slide your back down the wall until your knees are bent at a 90 degree angle. It should look like you are sitting on an invisible chair. Hold this position for 60 seconds.
Circuit 3 – Do 2x Through
G) The “Speed Skater” – Begin by standing with your feet together on your mat. Put your left hand on your hip. Hold an 8 lb weight in your right hand, out stretching your right arm in front of you. Keeping your left leg straight, kick your left leg out behind you and bend your right knee to squat on one leg. While holding this stance, bend your right elbow to lift the weight towards you. Lower your left leg to the ground to return to standing and straighten your right arm. Repeat 10x, and then repeat 10x more with your left arm and bending your left leg.
H) The “Hip Thruster” -Begin by laying on your back on your mat, with your arms at your sides. Bend your right knee so that you right foot is on the ground. Lift your left leg, fully extended, until it is pointed straight at the ceiling. Pushing off with your right leg, lift your butt and lower back off of the mat. Your left leg will push up closer to the ceiling. Keep your back and butt as straight as possible. Lower your butt to just a few inches above the ground. Repeat nonstop 10x, and then repeat again 10x with the other leg.
I) The “Steamroller” – Begin by standing with a balance ball situated to the left of you. Lower into a squat and place your left leg on the balance ball. With control, use your left leg to pull the balance ball in towards your body and then push it back away from your body. You should be lowered in a squat the whole time. Repeat 12x, and then repeat again with your right leg and the balance ball on your right.
Fitness Tip of the Day
Become a better runner! Click here to find out how.