Leg Day Fun

Raise your hand if you enjoy hitting legs at the gym?  I know I do.  I typically work out the lower half of my body 2-3 times a week.  Not only does this help to keep me strong and healthy, but it also helps to build out my glutes, hamstrings, and quads – all of which are vital muscle groups for us females (men, too!). Having a strong lower half allows us to stay active and physically fit in other areas of our lives as well – running, cycling, playing with our kids, you name it.  Next time you’re unsure of which body part to focus on while at the gym, why not give the following leg exercises a try?  The number of sets and reps is up to you and your comfort/exercise level. If these are new to you, please make sure to have a spotter if necessary.

Above: Wide Stance Squats with Weight.  Depending on your skill set, use an appropriate weight.  Fit are further than hip width apart, slowly lower your bottom and then squeeze on the way up.  Targets: inner thighs, glutes, quads.

Above: Single Leg Deadlift.  Depending on your skill set, use an appropriate weight. Stand on one leg, on the same side that you hold the kettlebell. Keeping that knee slightly bent, bend at the hip, extending your free leg behind you for balance. Continue lowering the kettlebell until you are parallel to the ground, then return to the upright position.  Targets: glutes, hamstrings, adductors.

Above: Box Jumps.  Depending on your skill set, use an appropriate height of jump box.  Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, at a short distance from the box. When ready to jump, drop into a quarter squat, then extend your hips, swing your arms, and push your feet through the floor to propel yourself onto the box.  Targets: upper and lower body.

Above: Pause squats.  Depending on your skill set, use an appropriate weight.  Stand with feet shoulder width apart.  Engage the core and muscles in the glutes and legs.  Slowly lower your body, keeping your chest up as you descend.  When in a full squat, hold the position for 2-3 seconds (or whatever amount is comfortable for you).  After the pause, push through the soles of your feet and extend to a standing position (do not lock out your knees).  Targets: quads, core, glutes, hammies, lower back, hips.

Above: Single Leg Lunges with TRX band.  Depending on your skill set, do not use TRX band if you have trouble with stability.  With the back foot in the TRX facing down, bend the front leg, putting weight on the TRX. Bend till 90 degrees then raise back up.  Targets: glutes, quads, core.

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