With summer right around the corner, it’s the perfect time to incorporate exercises for slim legs into your daily routine. Having toned legs will make you feel more confident when wearing shorts or swimsuits.
Exercises to lose weight on legs include a decent amount of cardio along with some bodyweight exercises to keep those muscles toned. You have to keep in mind that physical activity is only half the battle, so you’ll want to improve your diet while working to achieve summer-ready legs.
There are a lot of ways to train your legs – people use stair master, bicycles, gym machines to work out legs. But I’m sharing with you exercises that will help you slim and tone your legs without creating a bulky appearance.
Walking for slim legs
If you’re a beginner, walking is the perfect way to start your fitness journey. It’ll help you shed the pounds and tone your legs at the same time. The best thing about walking is that this method helps to burn leg fat without making them bulky. It’s great for those people who have naturally big muscular legs.
Download an audiobook and head out on a walk during your lunch break. You can burn 270 calories during a 45-minute walk, making it a low-impact way to help slim down your legs. 35-minute fits right into the recommended daily walking time of the Heart and Stroke Foundation.
How to walk correctly
The key to using this exercise to lose weight in legs is to work on your speed and form. You should aim to walk as fast as it’s comfortable to do this. This way your heart rate increases and work out these leg muscles.
If you’re focusing on improving the speed, you want to concentrate on shorter steps. Your back leg powers the quicker pace. You want to focus your attention on pushing off the ground with your back foot.
Keep in mind your posture, which will also help your balance while walking. Keeping your body upright will reduce strain on your knees and hips while reducing your chance of injury.
For the best results, you want to consider how you’re walking. With each step, you should be landing on the outer portion of your heel. As you step down, your foot should go inwards, with your weight focusing on the inner portion of your sole.
Upgrading your walking workout: As you start getting more comfortable with your daily walk, you want to increase the distance and difficulty. You can change up your route and incorporate hills or different surfaces to keep your muscles engaged. If you want to burn a few extra calories, you can consider taking a leaf out of the Scandinavian fitness book. Nordic walkers often use two walking poles to improve their strides while adding in an upper-body workout.
If you need an arbitrary goal, you can invest in a fitness watch to keep track of your steps. Usually to lose weight in legs you want to make 10000-15000 steps every day.
Running for slim legs
While walking is the best way to start as a beginner, you might want a more challenging exercise for slim legs. With running, you can take it at your own speed and create a tailored plan that works with your fitness levels. The best exercise to lose weight on legs is long-distance running at a slower pace on flat surfaces.
What running does
Running engages your butt, calves, and hamstrings – this way helping to tone your leg muscles. While it might seem contradictory as it can boost your muscles, running will slim down your legs by helping you burn calories.
Long-distance running will keep your muscles engaged for longer, helping you build up your tolerance and improve your overall strength. Also, because leg muscles are the biggest muscles in your body, by exercising them you can burn around 800 calories during an hour-long run (or around 400 calories for 30 minutes) – that’s more than enough to create a calorie deficit to lose weight effectively.
You want to focus on creating a running path with flat surfaces to reduce muscle tension that can lead to your legs bulking up in size. Staying on a flat surface will prevent you from building muscles around your hamstrings and quads, which can be counterproductive to your goal.
How to start running
Beginners can incorporate a rotating run-walk method to get started. You can run for two minutes, then slow down to a jogging pace for a minute before rotating between the two. If you want to work on your footwork, you can get to work on a treadmill before hitting an outdoor surface. When you have a day off from running, it’s a good idea to still get your daily steps in on a low-intensity walk.
HIIT for slim legs
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a very popular type of exercises to lose weight in legs. The convenience of HIIT (average workout takes only 15-20 minutes!) makes it beginner-friendly and easy to incorporate into a busy lifestyle.
A HIIT work involves multiple exercises that you focus on for short bursts of time (from 20 sec to 1 minute) before moving to a lower intensity exercise/or rest. The point of this is to increase your heart rate to the maximum and burn the maximum of fat.
If you’re not a fan of running, HIIT can be a great alternative. You can typically burn the same number of calories in a 20-minute HIIT workout as a 40-minute running session.
Personalizing your HIIT: If you’re using HIIT as your slim legs exercise, you want to tailor your workouts and diet to meet your body type. As HIIT workouts tend to engage your whole body – and build up a sweat! – they can cause your legs to bulk out. So don’t use weight for doing HIIT and also, try to limit such moves like squats, lunges and similar ones that target your quads too much.
Try these HIIT workouts:
If slim legs are your goal, a full-body HIIT routine could be the perfect option for you. As HIIT can boost your metabolism, you’ll notice that you’re burning more calories in a shorter time frame. It engages your cardiovascular system, keeping your body in the aerobic zone, encouraging fat loss.
The main thing to consider with a HIIT workout is nailing each of your interval exercises. Whether you’re doing high-knees or mountain climbers, you want to watch your form to make sure you’re not irritating any joint issues or putting pressure on your back. Taking breaks between your HIIT workouts can help your body recover.
You don’t need to be doing a HIIT exercises to love weight on legs every day – 3 sessions a week are enough to see visible results soon. You can incorporate other cardio workouts from this list for your ‘off’ days. Instead of doing a HIIT workout every day, focus on making the most of your training and don’t forget about daily steps!
Pilates exercises for slim legs
Pilates is one of the most popular types of exercise for slim legs as it engages your entire leg and usually uses your own body weight. Pilates can also boost your overall fitness, especially if you suffer from back and joint problems. With pilates, you focus on remaining in control of your actions, using all your leg muscles to elongate their appearance, giving the illusion of toned long legs.
If you’re set on using pilates as your exercise to lose weight on legs, choose workouts that target and stretch leg muscles to achieve your desired results.
Pilates workout incorporates isolated movements that shape and slim your leg muscles, but also induces feelings of calm and relaxation. In a way, pilates similar to yoga because it helps to reduce stress and focus on your body. That’s a great benefit because if you want to lose weight effectively, you should always pay attention to your mental health and be sure that your stress levels are under control.
Stretching exercises for slim legs
Stretching is a go-to choice for slim legs exercise as it can lengthen your calves and thighs and visually improve your overall figure. Whether you’re using cardio or HIIT workouts to slim your legs, you want to incorporate stretching as a way to reduce recovery time and keep your muscles from becoming torn.
Calf stretching: You want to focus on your calves, which encompass the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles. Stretching helps to slim your legs by keeping the muscles engaged while preventing them from contracting. If you’re focused on slimming your legs, you’ll want to target both your calves and hamstrings.
Hamstring stretching: The first hamstring stretch you can experiment with is the one-legged downward dog. It’ll loosen the muscles around your hamstrings and hips. This stretch involves bending forward to create a ‘V’ shape, with your hands and feet flat against the floor. As you inhale, you should lift your left leg back to push it away from your body until you feel the muscles start to stretch. Hold your leg straight when it becomes aligned with your spine before lowering your leg as you exhale.
When you’re stretching your hamstring, you need to focus on maintaining a proper form throughout. Taking purposeful breaths in and out can help you focus on your overall form while reducing anxiety. For the best results, you should hold each stretching pose for 30 seconds. You’re less likely to see results if you hold your stretching poses for any less than this.
Other stretching benefits: If you’re mixing and matching your slim leg exercises, stretching can help aid with your other cardio workouts. Regularly stretching will improve your flexibility while preventing your muscles from becoming sore or stiff post-workout. You can incorporate stretching with pilates for more defined results. Like the other cardio exercises on our list, you want to avoid off-setting your stretching by ensuring you eat a balanced diet.
I hope this post has helped you find the exercise for slim legs that’ll work for your fitness level. Moderate HIIT workouts can help tone your legs if you’re a gym aficionado. Low-intensity cardio is your best friend if you’re a newbie to the world of fitness.
The secret to any slim legs exercise is consistency. You want to create a fitness plan that you can follow to meet your goals and challenge yourself. As you build your fitness levels, you can level up your exercise to lose weight on legs – by incorporating more HIIT workouts or scaling up the length of your cardio sessions. Don’t forget about the importance of healthy diet as workouts will do nothing if you continue indulging in fast foods and chocolates.
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