Although the abdominals (abs) seem to be the most obsessed over muscle group of late, the second most anguished body area is the butt and legs. On a weekly basis, I get women begging me for routines to lift and tone the butt, and sculpt the legs (in particular the inner thighs).
Why is our lower region needing so much help? Because, ladies, that’s where our bodies store fat the most and quickest. If you have a sedentary job, if you gained weight during pregnancy, if you have a dysfunctional nutrition plan – all these things separately or combined will put thickness in your trunk.
But here’s the good news. Our legs contain big muscle groups. Big muscle groups will consistently burn calories all day long if you train them properly. The other good news is that while leg routines feel more strenuous than upper body workouts, it’s relatively easy to get results with less time spent exercising. If you do it right.
Right off the bat, let me stress: less is more! When I see women at the gym performing a vice grip squeeze of 100 lbs between their inner thighs on the Adductor Machine I cringe. All you’re doing is building a bicep-like muscle up underneath the fat. Your thighs will swish together more than getting leaner if you build up those adductor muscles. You’ll never see a ballerina performing that exercise!
Toning and sculpting legs for the average woman is simply a matter of high reps, low weight, and multi-directional movements, combined with high-intensity aerobic activity (which does not have to be high-impact). Whether you choose 10-20 minute intense lower-body sessions three times a week, or a slow and deliberate one-hour muscle torture twice a week, you will see results if you approach your workouts with less weighted resistance.
I am often asked what one single exercise would I recommend to lift the butt. As a trainer, it’s hard for me to suggest only one exercise, but to appease all of you who still do not embrace the benefits of total body workouts – here it is: lunges lunges lunges. But please pay attention to your knees. If lunges are done improperly (which they are more often than not), you can do some serious tweaking to your knees.
So if you need a kick in the butt, to tone your butt, follow my advice here, or contact me if you need a more personal butt kicking!