Getting those sexy summer legs is going to take a one-two punch with a good nutrition and care program for your legs coupled with a solid exercise plan. Are you ready to step up to summer legs?
Exercises for Sexy Summer Legs
A large part of getting those wheels in shape for summer is going to be consistently following a good exercise program. While it is important to train your entire body, for the purpose of this article, we will focus on exercises for sexy summer legs.
1. Walking—this is one of the best things you can possibly do to get long, lean, beautifully toned legs. A fast walk can burn close to 300 calories an hour while simultaneously working all the muscles in your legs, calves, glutes, hips, and even your stomach. This form of repetitive gentle exercise can have you looking toned in no time. Try varying your speed and add some hill (or incline if you’re on a treadmill) to increase the difficulty of your workout.
2. Foam Rolling—this is a way to help break up knots and scar tissue and loosen up sore, tense muscles throughout your body. Using a foam roller for your legs is especially helpful because it can improve your range of motion and flexibility by loosening up the fascia around your muscles.
3. Body Squat—this is probably one of the most universally recognized exercises for legs (although it also works most of the muscles in your body simultaneously). Begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Clasp your hands in front of you and bend at the knees while pushing your hips back (as if you were going to sit down on a chair). Stop when your knees are at about a 90-degree angle and return to standing by pushing up through your heels. Repeat 10 times.
4. Straight-Legged Deadlift—this exercise is not just for bodybuilders and powerlifters. If you want sexy summer legs, hamstrings, and a shapely backside, then this exercise is for you. Stand with your feet about hip-width apart. Grab a kettlebell or a dumbbell in each hand, and let your arms hang straight down in front of you. Keeping your legs and back straight, bend at the hips to lower the weights toward the ground. Go as far down as is comfortable and allows for a good stretch through your hamstrings. Return to standing and repeat 10 times.
5. Walking Lunges—yet another great way to stretch and tone your leg muscles is the lunge exercise. Begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart and your hands on your hips. Take a giant step forward with your right foot, bending your right knee until your thigh is parallel to the ground (usually this means your legs are both bent at a 90-degree angle). Push off through your right heel to propel your body forward, which will also require you to lift your left (back) leg and swing it through and forward so it now becomes the front leg, bending at a 90-degree angle. Continue this “walk” for 15 repetitions on each side.
6. Glute Bridges—some fitness facilities will have a machine for this exercise. If not, don’t worry, you can also perform this exercise with no weight and still get results. Begin by lying on your back with your feet hip-width apart, knees bent, and your hands by your sides, palms flat on the ground. Bring the heels of your feet as close as you can to your butt, and slowly and in control, lift your hips off the ground and push them as far upward as you can using your glutes and hamstrings. Keep your core tight, but remember to breathe. Hold this squeeze for a few seconds and then control your descent back to the starting position. Repeat.
7. Lateral Lunges—begin by standing with your feet about hip-width apart and hold your hands together in front of you. Face forward and take a giant step out to the side with your right leg. Bend your right knee as you do this and simultaneously push your hips back. Keep bending until your right knee is bent at a 90-degree angle while keeping your left leg straight. Then push through your heel to propel yourself back to the start. Do five repetitions on the right and then repeat the sequence on the left.
Beyond Exercise: More Steps to Sexy Summer Legs
None of these great exercises is going to do the trick or bring you closer to sexy summer legs unless you get a few other areas of interest handled as well. Your nutrition is one of the top factors you must monitor.
1. Monitor your caloric intake—if you are taking in more calories than you are burning off with daily activity and exercise, it will be difficult to reveal your sleek sexy legs because your body will hide them beneath excess body fat. Try using a fitness app, like MyFitnessPal, CalorieCounter+, FatSecret, Lose It!, or others, to monitor and adjust your caloric intake.
2. Drink plenty of water—regardless of your fitness and health goals, drinking water is essential. Not only do you hydrate your body and lubricate your joints, drinking lots of water can help you flush out fat and toxins which will help your legs look smoother and more toned.
3. Smooth skin—exfoliating, moisturizing, and using self-tanners will all help to improve the appearance of your legs.
4. Get your protein—protein is one of the building blocks of muscle, and if you’re breaking down the muscle tissue in your legs in an effort to add some shape, then rebuilding and replenishing that muscle is necessary. Ideally, aim for .75 – 1.00 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day.
5. Ditch the processed foods—the huge amounts of sodium, additives, and artificial ingredients commonly found in processed foods won’t do your legs (or the rest of your body) any favors.
6. Massage—this helps to get the circulation going in your leg muscles and may help break up cellulite and flush out toxins. Plus, the stress relief you’ll experience during the massage will help your overall outlook!
7. Sleep—never underestimate the power of rest! After everything is said and done, getting plenty of sleep will help you burn extra body fat and build the muscle you need.