If you look on Instagram or Facebook, it’s likely you notice that having sexy legs and glutes is the latest trend. As a result, there are thousands of different recommendations for what to do if leg development is your goal.
Fortunately, the principles of sculpting sexy legs are fairly simple. You just need to know which steps to take and how to do it efficiently.
In this article, I’ll discuss 5 key principles that you need to dial in, if you’re interested in building social media worthy legs.
If there is one way to ensure that you fix your flabby legs, it’s training them using resistance. Simply, if you’re not using resistance, it’s unlikely that you’ll tone and shape your legs how you’ve always dreamed.
First and foremost, many people have been given false hope by using terms like “toning” muscles. I get what this means but many take this concept to mean that lifting weights will make you bulky, while using bodyweight will lead to “toning.” This is simply not true and could be hindering your ability to define your legs.
How your legs look, whether that’s lean and muscular or flabby, depends on many different factors, such as how often you use your legs, your nutrition and, of course, how you exercise your legs.
The problem with using little to no resistance is that you’re not really doing anything to drive growth. Consider that you walk each and every day, with no extra resistance. In turn, your legs are in their current state as a result of the stress you’ve been placing on them. If you continue to exercise with no resistance, you can expect that your legs will never change.
Just think for a second, which of the following would be more effective for increasing muscular strength and muscle definition in the legs. If given the choice, would you opt for a weighted squat or a bodyweight squat? Since the resistance and the stress you place on your legs are much higher with the weighted squat, the return will also be much greater.
Essentially, in order to improve your legs and reduce the flab, using resistance will make your workouts much more efficient and overall more effective.
Work Your Legs Directly
Specifically training your legs is the number one way to improve your muscular definition. Sometimes you might hear that doing other exercises indirectly works muscle groups like your abs. For instance, you’ve probably heard that if you squat, you don’t need to do separate ab work.
The problem with this idea is that you might not be stressing your legs enough to produce a change. Just as in the example above, if you’re passively exercising your legs with other exercises, it’s unlikely that you’ll improve.
Spending time specifically working on your leg muscles will ensure that you’re constantly providing them with a reason to change.
This concept is similar to the idea that you need to exercise specifically for your sport. For example, if you’re a runner, you depend on cardiovascular endurance. Swimming and biking for instance also help improve your cardiovascular ability, but you still need to focus on run training.
The scientific principle here is that there are specific benefits of training with running if you’re a runner. While swimming and biking might improve your cardio, they don’t help improve your running.
The same goes for exercising muscle groups. You might passively work your leg muscles with other exercises, but if you want to specifically improve your legs, you should then train them directly.
Monitor Your Nutrition
No training suggestion is ever complete without suggesting a change to nutrition. If you have legs that you’re not proud of, chances are you’re not training them correctly, but it’s also likely that you’re not eating for results, either.
Unfortunately, we live in a time where most people want instant gratification, myself included. In terms of fitness, this leads to many people cutting corners, which typically means avoiding nutritional changes.
Avoiding nutrition changes just makes the whole process harder than it should be. Time and time again, I’ve received messages from members who have started exercising, but are still eating junk food. This always baffles me because, by avoiding nutrition changes, they’re making the process of changing their body much more difficult than it needs to be.
Yes, you can burn calories through exercise, but what happens when you make up for those calories burned by eating junk food? The result is that you work hard in the gym, but never make any changes.
I strongly advise you begin paying closer attention to your nutrition if you want to tighten up your legs. Just making small changes, like eating more nutritious foods, can have a significant impact on how rapidly your legs change.
Take the high road and put in the extra effort. Both you and your legs will thank you for it.
Use The Right Exercises
Even if you’re working your leg muscles directly, you want to ensure that you’re using the best exercises for each of the muscle groups that make up the legs. I recommend you do this to ensure that you’re working all muscle groups of the legs equally and that the exercises you choose are effective.
The quadriceps is the largest muscle group within your legs. For the most part, any pressing type movements will be best, but there are other exercises that are also beneficial for this muscle group.
The best exercises to use for building shapely and sexy legs are:
- Barbell Squat
- Closer Stance Leg Press
- Front Squat
- Hack Squat
- Goblet Squat
- Trap (Hexagon) Bar Deadlifts
- Bulgarian Split Squats
- Leg Extensions
Hamstrings & Glutes
Training your hamstrings and glutes are a bit different. Since this muscle group extends all the way from your lower back to your calves, you want to ensure that you’re stimulating all parts of the hamstrings, including the upper and lower portion.
Further, you’ll want to spend time specifically focusing on the glutes. Lying leg curls for instance are not as adept at growing glutes as would be a hip thrust or glute bridge.
Some of the best options for working hamstrings are as follows:
- Lying Leg Curl
- Seated Leg Curl
- Wider Stance Leg Press
- Romanian Deadlift
- Stiff Leg Deadlift
- Sumo Squat/Deadlift
And for glutes:
- Barbell Hip Thrust
- Romanian Deadlift
- Glute Kickbacks
- Glute Bridge
- Banded Romanian Deadlift
- Leg Curls
Train Your Legs Frequently
Lastly, you want to exercise your legs frequently if they are your main priority. Regularly stimulating your legs means that any changes that do come will likely appear much sooner.
I recommend that you start with training your legs twice per week. For one workout focus primarily on your quadriceps muscles and the next, focus on glutes and hamstrings.
As you become more experienced and able, you can consider increasing how often you train legs based on preference and your ability to recover. Remember that the days of exercising body parts once per week are a thing of the past. More regular stimulation of growth will make the process much easier.
5 Key Rules To Fix Flabby Legs
Building your legs, much like any other body part, is fairly straightforward. Use resistance regularly, train the body part specifically and do so often. Further, ensure that you’re manipulating your nutrition as well. Trying to overcome a poor diet is often easier said than done.
Using these tips will put you in a prime position to build defined, sexy legs in no time.