Skipping leg day is not an option. The base of your physique is built on your legs. A leg exercise routine for bodybuilding can be exhausting both physically and mentally, however, the outcome of the effort is worth it.
It is clear that leg exercises are difficult and require a lot of energy. Performing exercises that use multiple muscles at once such as the squat will leave your entire body feeling exhausted, your breath was taken away, and your muscles aching.
The pain of the beneficial type is necessary to give legs the intense effort necessary for muscle fibers to increase in size. This requires a specific state of mind to fully commit to leg day and make it a prime focus.
A “V” shaped body with wide shoulders, wide back muscles, a trim waist, and big thigh muscles is something bodybuilders strive for. If your legs do not compare in size and strength to the rest of your body, you cannot put together the full physique needed for bodybuilding these days.
By doing the top-rated leg exercises, you can keep advancing in your training journey and reach your highest possible level. A tough day in the gym usually involves working out the glutes, quads, and hamstrings, which are some of the biggest muscles in the body.
The clear upside to this is that you’ll be able to acquire shapelier legs, as well as the assurance of stronger muscles that could guard against incidents. Which workout routines are most effective for strengthening the legs?
Exercises such as squats, lunges, and calf raises are essential during leg workouts as they help to evenly tax the muscles in the lower body. This collection of activities has been compiled to ensure a balanced routine. The next time you are either in your house or at the gym, attempt some of the most productive leg exercises for an additional challenge and for the purpose of enhancing your muscles.
The Best Leg Workouts
Place your feet at a hip’s width apart (or expand or minimize the stance to be more comfortable), keep your posture upright, draw your shoulders back, and hold your head high. Bend your knee, like you’re about to sit in a chair, and bring your bottom down towards the floor. Make sure your knees don’t go past your toes, stop when your thighs are level with the ground, then press into your heels while keeping your upper body lifted, and contract your buttocks as you get to a standing position.
Try this maneuver without any weights and once you feel comfortable and have perfected your technique, add a barbell at the back of your shoulders, hold a pair of dumbbells upright next to your shoulders, or grab a kettlebell and hold it close to your chest. Make sure your knees don’t veer away from each other and maintain your back straight as you use the power of your glutes to raise your upper body back to a full standing position and keep your abdominal muscles held tight for support.
2. Calf Raises
This workout concentrates on a certain region of the legs, but it’s great for producing the desired, heart-shaped appearance for the backs of the calves. Again, it can be made harder by introducing weights.
Locate a slightly elevated area, such as a street curb or a stair, and shuffle backward until the back of your feet is no longer touching it. Maintain good posture with your back straight and chest up as you slowly lower your heels over the edge until almost touch the floor. Once at the bottom, push yourself back up and tighten your calf muscles.
This workout can be intense for those just beginning, so keep an eye out for how you are feeling after a few repetitions and take it easy. Alternatively, if 12-15 reps feel like a breeze, try using dumbbells or a resistance band to create a more challenging workout.
3. Leg Curl
Exercising a muscle when you’re worn out or fatigued is not the most effective way to induce muscle growth. Starting with leg curls at the start of your workout ensures that your hamstrings get the proper attention.
You should do two leg curl exercises – the lying down curl and the seated curl. Pick your favorite to kick off your workout. Once you finish focusing on your quads, you will then have the opportunity to work on your hamstrings.
The results of a recent study revealed that when doing leg curls while seated, produces more muscle growth than when doing lying leg curls. The sartorius muscle exhibited superior development when doing lying leg curls. It might be beneficial to try out both different kinds of leg curls as they attach the hamstrings in separate ways, so as to maximize muscle development in that area.
Do two preliminary exercises and then do four sets of eight repetitions. Allow yourself about two minutes of rest between sets, and pay attention to carrying out the exercise correctly from the most stretched-out to the tightest position.
4. Leg Press
The leg press is a similar exercise to the squat, although the focus on the muscles is a bit different. Utilizing a leg press machine eliminates the need to be concerned about keeping your balance and stability. Rather than worrying about other areas, you can entirely concentrate on pushing the weight with your thigh and buttocks muscles.
Using the leg press machine lets you lift more heavyweight than when doing squats, but you’re not in the gym to lift as much weight as you possibly can. You’re there to build bigger legs. Prioritize proper form and a full range of motion. It’s advisable to keep your weight relatively low when using the leg press to build muscle, however, it is the most effective method.
Make sure you don’t move so much that you can’t keep your spine against the chair throughout. Engaging in the activity could raise the chance of having an injury to the back part of your body.
Four sets of ten reps are plenty. If you have the security measures of safety pins on the leg press machine or a spotter with you, it is okay to push your last set close to the point of muscular exhaustion. Experienced weightlifters can benefit from pushing their muscles to the point of exhaustion in order to promote increased muscle development.
This type of training is hard and requires longer periods of recovery, so it’s recommended to only utilize it in moderation to get the most benefit.
Keeping your rest intervals between two and three minutes. At this moment, your pulse will be high, and your legs will feel fatigued.
5. Bulgarian Split Squats
Doing exercises with just one limb, such as the Bulgarian split squat, is great for upping coordination and evening out muscular inequalities. It is a terrific exercise for pumping up your lower body muscles, in particular your quads, glutes, and adductors.
They function your thigh and butt muscles through a broadened range of movement and exhaust almost every muscle fiber in your lower body. That’s a recipe for muscle growth! Concurrently, they deplete a great deal of energy from you. Still, no one said building great legs was easy.
Perform three sets of ten reps for each leg. Due to the fact that your leg is almost in a state of rest for half the time, you can allow for yourself a break of 90 seconds to two minutes between your sets.
6. Romanian Deadlift
Doing Romanian deadlifts is extremely beneficial for working out your rear muscles, such as your hamstrings and buttocks.
The leg curl focuses on developing the hamstrings by bending at the knee, while the Romanian deadlift works for the same muscle group by extending the hips. It is a great idea to do both exercises on your leg day workout in order to make sure that all of your hamstring muscles are developed.
Maintain slightly bent knees during the exercise, emphasizing a broad scope of motion and obtaining a thorough stretch at the lowest point.
At the end of the exercise session, you should do reps with a slightly higher intensity. Perform three sets of 12 repetitions to effectively work out your hamstrings. Resting two minutes between sets is sufficient.
7. Leg Extension
It’s time for the finisher, leg extensions. Leg extensions are unmatched in terms of the intense sensation of strength and growth in your leg muscles. In addition, they complement squats perfectly. Here’s why:
Your quadriceps consists of four different muscles:
- Vastus lateralis
- Vastus medialis
- Rectus femoris
- Vastus intermedius
Doing squats (and other varieties of them) can be a beneficial workout for the first three muscle groups. It has recently been found that the squat exercise has little effect on the rectus femoris muscle.
Leg extensions, in contrast, prompt a greater response from the rectus femoris muscle, leading to an increase in its size.
Workouts involving squats are great for building both mass and strength in your legs. Additionally, by supplementing these exercises with leg extensions, you create a perfect environment for shaping your quads.
You will be performing three rounds of twelve repetitions of leg extensions. Rest up to two minutes between sets. Maintain the strain on the muscle all through the complete activity by slowly lowering the respective weight and activating your quadriceps when you reach the apex.
Give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back – you should be proud of yourself for completing the quad muscles portion of your exercise routine with gusto. Despite the fact that you have finished your quad exercises, the workout has not ended. We have more hamstring work to do!
Why You Should Never Skip Leg Day
It isn’t simply about having a well-shaped backside and well-toned legs during the summer months: leg exercises are essential for our overall health and well-being. A study conducted at the University of Rhode Island determined that doing squats increases helpful hormones in the body, including testosterone and growth hormone.
Hormone growth can aid in building muscle, and the generation of testosterone in males as well as females can benefit sexual drive and cardiovascular health.
Compound lifting exercises with free weights, such as squats and lunges, involve multiple muscle groups performing an action together. Doing a barbell squat engages your butt, shin muscles, and hamstrings, but it also involves your torso and back since you need to be balanced during the exercise. By doing these exercises, you will be achieving much more than just working your legs, as many different muscles are being engaged, allowing for a very effective workout.
This will also help to get your metabolism going, aiding you in slimming down. A study discovered that the body’s oxygen intake drastically grew when performing exercises that involve multiple joints, compared to those that involve individual joints, such as leg extensions or bicep curls. Incorporating this workout into your fitness regimen will lead to boosted fitness levels as a whole and will enable quick weight loss.
How to Perform the Best Leg Workout
The legs possess some of the body’s most powerful and extensively used muscles, as long as one does not spend a lot of time sitting at a desk. That’s why they react extremely well to regular exercise. Even those new to exercising usually notice beneficial changes within a fortnight.
It’s worth noting that the legs are often one of the leading causes of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (also known as DOMS in exercise circles). This condition can cause certain muscles to feel tender when touched or leave people feeling tired. It is important to begin any new workout routine slowly, using minimal weights and then increasing the repetitions and heavier weights slowly as one progresses. If you’re in discomfort, check out our DOMS recovery guide.
Make sure you drink plenty of fluids while exercising, get lots of rest afterward, and add more protein to your diet through healthy options like lean meats, beans, seafood, and nut products. The body needs protein to fix and build up the muscles used during exercise, so remember to consume the nutrients to make that possible. One approach to accomplish this goal is with a protein shake. To find delicious recipes, check out our selection of the most effective protein powders for slimming down and the most beneficial protein powders specifically for women.