Leg Workout – A Building is only as Strong as its Foundation

leg-workout

Let’s face it, no one likes leg day and who would? No one can possibly enjoy hobbling around for a whole day and feeling your legs like Jell-O. That being said, you can’t hold back, you have to meet every challenge head-on. Every leg workout is assumed to start with a simple squat but it goes much further than just squats and leg presses.

This blog will give you a solid understanding of your leg muscles, how to train them and the exercises you need to reach your goal.

Why is a Leg Workout Important?

Even though it is the most hated day of the week, there are a number of reasons why leg day isn’t just good for your legs but your overall health. Here are a couple of reasons why you can most definitely not skip leg day.

leg-workout

Build more muscles

The squats and deadlifts are sure to give you huge muscles since it increases testosterone in the body and testosterone serves as a natural steroid, which means huge slabs of meat. Compound exercises are key for any leg work out since they occupy large muscle groups that help elevate your testosterone levels.

Burn more calories

The Gluteus Maximus is the largest muscle in your body and to train it requires a lot of energy which in turn means that you will, be burning a lot more calories.

Studies from the Journal of Applied Physiology has shown that athletes that trained and did compound exercises like squats and deadlifts for 90 minutes had an exponential increase in their metabolic rate several hours after they stopped training.

Increased strength

When you are trying to lift heavy weights, your body recruits your abs and legs. So if you are looking to lift some heavy weights, tree trunk like legs are sure to help you lift some heavyweights.

Since you will have more strength you will reduce the risk of injury during your workout.

leg-workout

Top 6 Leg Exercises

Here are 5 exercises that are great compound exercises and will give your legs a real burn and can be a great addition to your leg workout.

Back Squats

The squats can be called the king of leg exercises and no workout can really be complete without squats. The back squat is a compound exercise which puts a strain on your quads, hamstrings, and glutes.

How to do it:

  1. Take a barbell and place it on your shoulders.
  2. Stand firm with your feet roughly shoulder-width apart.
  3. Lower down as if you were sitting on a chair and descend until your hip crease is lower than your knees
  4. Keep your weight on your heels and drive back up to the starting position

leg-workout

Lunges

Lunges help develop your lower body strength and mainly works on muscle imbalances. They can also be a great move for beginners for their leg workout.

How to do it:

  1. Stand straight with feet hip-width apart.
  2. Take a step forward with the right leg and start to shift weight forward so your heel hits the floor first.
  3. Lower your body until the right thigh is parallel to the floor and right shin is vertical.
  4. Press on to your right heel to drive back up to starting position.
  5. Repeat on the other side.

leg-workout

Deadlift

Deadlifts are another compound exercise that strengthens your lower back, hamstrings, and core, as well as your biceps and traps.

How to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet under the barbell
  2. Bend over and grab the bar with a shoulder-width grip
  3. Bend your knees until your shins touch the bar
  4. Lift your chest up and straighten your lower back
  5. Take a big breath, hold it, and stand up with the weight

leg-workout

Leg Press

This exercise develops your legs overall, working on your glutes, quads, and hamstrings. It can be an amazing addition to your leg workout.

How to do it:

  1. Using a leg press machine, sit down on the machine and place your legs on the platform directly in front of you at a medium (shoulder width) foot stance.
  2. Lower the safety bars holding the weighted platform in place and press the platform all the way up until your legs are fully extended in front of you.
  3. As you inhale, slowly lower the platform until your upper and lower legs make a 90-degree angle.
  4. Pushing mainly with the heels of your feet and using the quadriceps go back to the starting position as you exhale.

leg-workout

Leg Extension

Leg extensions are a great addition to your leg work-out as it puts a strain on your quads, making for more muscle size and definition

How to do it:

  1. First, choose your weight on the leg extension machine and sit with your legs under the pad (feet pointed forward) and the hands holding the sidebars. This will be your starting position.
  2. Using your quadriceps, extend your legs to the maximum, ensuring that the rest of the body remains stationary on the seat. Pause a second on the contracted position.
  3. Slowly lower the weight back to the original position as you inhale. Make sure that you do not go past the 90-degree angle limit.

leg-workout

Leg curls

This is an isolation exercise that works on your hamstrings and calf muscles. This is a must have exercise for every leg workout.

How to do it:

  1. Start by lying flat on your stomach and adjust the roller pads so they rest on the back of your ankles
  2. Lift your feet smoothly as you exhale, keeping your hips firmly on the bench.
  3. Inhale as you flex your knee and pull your ankles as close to your buttocks as you can.
  4. Hold this position for a second, allowing yourself to make sure you are focused as you prepare to lower your legs.
  5. Inhale fully as you return your feet to starting position in a smooth, slow, controlled movement.

leg-workout

Key Takeaway

As horrible as the leg day seems, it is important, not only from an aesthetic standpoint, but it is also important if you are looking to gain strength, improve your core and lift heavier weights. That being said, the workout is only 20% of the end goal and you need to keep your diet in check if you are looking to reach any fitness goal.

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