The winter months tends to be an excuse for some of us to ditch our workouts, pack on a few pounds, and basically hibernate.
Well the time for hiding is over, and the time for flaunting is here! So if your legs are in need of a little tune up, start incorporating these 4 exercises into your workout routine and get your legs in summer-ready condition before the summer actually hits.
Learn To Love The Lateral Lunge
I have a love-hate relationship with lunges. I love how they make my legs look but I hate actually doing them, especially when I have to do a lot of them.
I’m sure I am not alone in this statement as lunges can really be a difficult exercise to power through, but there is no better exercise for toning your legs and glutes than lunges.
Simply step into a side lunge while making sure to keep both of your feet pointing forward. To ensure you are doing this exercise properly, bend your outside knee while keeping your inside knee straight.
This exercise alone will help you to dynamically exercise, target, and tone your abductors, adductors, glutes, hamstrings, hip flexors, hips, and quads. Push yourself to do 3 sets of 12 lateral lunges on each leg and make sure you feel that burn!
It’s a staple in nearly every workout, so you know they’ve got to be good, right? Actually, squats help to target one of the biggest muscle groups in your body which ultimately helps you burn calories, and fat, more effectively.
To do a proper squat, stand with your feet shoulder width apart and bend at your knees until your thighs are parallel to the ground.
Complete 3 sets of 12 squats and you will be tightening up your hamstrings, legs, quads, and your glutes. And for summer, a toned booty is necessary!
Squats With A Band
No, not a rock band, an elastic fitness band. To preform this variation on the simple squat, tie your elastic band around both your ankles. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and do you squat. Then to mix it up, take one step to the side and bring your feet back together standing shoulder width apart.
Do 3 sets of 12 side squats and you will be toning up your glutes, abductors, hamstrings, and quads. If you really want to feel the burn of this exercise, end each rep with a jump once you bring your feet back to the starting position and land in your squat position to start again. Not only will added jump help to work your muscles even more, but it will also help you burn more calories. It’s a win-win!
Feel Alive With Dead Lifts
Dead lifts are another exercise that is extremely effective in helping you to not only tone up your legs and glutes, but it also helps to work your upper body. Bonus!
Stand with your feet slightly further apart then shoulder width, holding your barbell or your hand weights in front of you.
Make sure to keep your back absolutely flat during this entire exercise, keep your shoulders back, weight in your heels, and be sure to also lower your weights as close to the floor as possible each time you do a rep.
Simply bend at the waist with a very slight bend in your knees, and as you lift the weight and straighten up, make sure you squeeze your glutes as tight as you can to get the full effect of the exercise.
Not only will you be targeting your leg muscles and your glutes but you will also tone your lower back and even your arms, making this exercise one of the most effective for getting in shape.
While these exercises help you to target and tone your legs and backside, if you want to speed up the process of toning one of the hardest areas of your body to tone, consider looking into the Flex Mini . The Flex Mini helps to tighten the backs of your thighs, and gradually gain a more shapely booty. Something I know my fellow ladies love!
Putting It All Together
Finally, while working out is a key factor in getting your legs in top summer shape, you must make sure you pair your workouts with a healthy diet and lifestyle. That means cutting out the refined sugar, starches, bad-for-you carbs, getting a daily dose of heart-pumping cardio, and trying to stay away from alcohol as much as you can.
Ultimately, living a healthy lifestyle is all about balance and not depriving yourself until you hit your breaking point. We all need a scoop of ice cream at one point or another, so make sure you don’t beat yourself up too much if you fall off the wagon one day. Guilt is one of the worst ways to motivate yourself and a little indulging is okay in moderation. Just don’t use it as an excuse to indulge every day.
Vanessa is a lifestyle blogging babe whose work can be found on websites all around cyberland, including reviews on Hydrolyze, as well as various other lifestyle brands. The best part about her job? She gets to help her readers live their best lives each and every day.