Top 5 Exercises to Tone your Legs
Having toned legs is a goal of many people. Our experience is that while men prefer to have muscular size, women tend to prefer to show tone and subtle definition. Whether you’re looking to prepare for a beach vacation or just want to feel more confident, toning your legs can give you that extra boost of self-esteem. While it can take some time and effort to get the results you want, there are a few steps you can take to get toned legs.
But what does it mean to have toned legs? Having toned legs means having strong and defined leg muscles. This usually involves doing exercises such as squats, lunges, and leg presses to strengthen and shape the muscles. Being strong is good. Tone can also be improved by reducing weight, as muscle tone is more defined with less adipose or fatty tissue around it. Excess fat will accumulate around the muscles.
First, you’ll want to focus on your diet. Eating a balanced diet with plenty of protein, fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats will help you to maintain a healthy weight, which is a key component to toning your legs. You should also limit your intake of unhealthy foods, such as processed snacks and sugary drinks. Cut out all fizzy drinks like cola and energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster. These nonsense drinks will NOT help you.
Second, you’ll need to start an exercise routine that focuses on your legs. Cardio exercises such as running and cycling will help you to burn calories and build endurance. Strength-training exercises, such as squats and lunges, will help you to build muscle in your legs and strengthen them.
Here are Our Top 5 Exercises to Increase Tone in your Legs:
Single Leg Half Squat: Stand on one leg, and bend your knee to the 1/2 squat position. Make sure when you squat you keep the middle of your knee cap in line with the middle toes of your foot. Do not let your knee drift off to one side. Also keep your hips and pelvis level as you squat, so you go down in a straight line. Be careful not to slump forwards as you squat, maintain good posture. Repeat 15 reps each side, three times.
Single Leg Full Squat Wall: Stand with your back resting against a wall, and bend your knee to the full squat position (90 degrees). Make sure when you squat you keep the middle of your knee cap in line with the middle toes of your foot. Do not let your knee drift off to one side. Always keep your foot flat on the ground, do not let your heel raise from the floor. Repeat 15 reps each side, three times.
Lunge or Low Lunge: Take a large step forward, and bend your front knee. Lean forwards, putting your weight over your front leg, and straightening your back leg slightly. Your back knee should almost touch the floor. Hold this position, then return to the start position. Keep your knees in a straight line to avoid them from dropping inwards. You can place your hands on your hips to assist. This is a strengthening exercise for the legs. Repeat 10 reps each side, three times.
Hip Extension with Ankle Weight: Stand up, with good posture, and attach an ankle weight to your ankle. Extend your leg behind you, and return to neutral. This exercise strengthens your gluteal (buttock) muscles. Repeat 15-20 reps, each side, three times.
Hip Abduction with Band: Lie on your side, and tie an exercise band around your thighs. Lift your leg upwards against the resistance of the band. You can hold this position, or move your leg up and down. This exercise predominantly strengthens your outer hip and gluteal (buttock) muscles. Repeat 20 reps each side, three times.
By following these steps, you can get toned legs in no time. Just remember to be consistent with your diet, exercise routine, and rest days, and you’ll be well on your way to having toned legs in no time. If you pick up any injuries, don’t hesitate to call us at Surrey Physio.
(Physios and Therapists: these videos are provided by Rehab My Patient – the best exercise prescription software for therapists to prescribe exercises www.rehabmypatient.com. Patients: if you are a patient needing advice, call Surrey Physio to book a telephone/video consultation with one of our expert physios or osteopaths, or book in face-to-face for an appointment. You can call us on 0208 685 6930 or book online by clicking the link at the top of the page).