Legs are probably the most difficult to train at home, mainly due to the fact that not everyone has the “proper” equipment at home. That’s where some ingenuity and compromise will fill the gap.
All of these exercises can be preformed without weights, but if you want to see results faster and get stronger legs, you’ll need to add some weight. Weight training is very beneficial for losing fat as well as gaining muscle. Whether that’s with dumbbells, a barbell, or even resistance bands like these; you need to push your legs to the limit as they are literally half of your body.
Squats are the bread and butter of lower body exercises as a whole, correctly categorized as a “compound exercise”. A squat is a very complex movement which involves your whole body, including your core, quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, adductors, and lower back.
There are many variations of the squat that can be preformed with a barbell, dumbbell, or free-weights. The most popular with a barbell is either the front squat or the back squat. A squat with dumbbells requires you to hold one dumbbell in each hand to your side while preforming squats. Squats without added weights can be done in the same way without dumbbells.
Squats should definitely be in everyones lower body or leg workout routine, whether it’s for home or at the gym. A strong upper body deserves a proportionate lower body.
Lunges are an another excellent exercise for your quads, hamstrings, and adductor muscles. You can preform lunges by either holding a dumbbell in each hand, a barbell with or without weights on your back, or completely without weights.
The goal with lunges is to be as stable as possible, and get your kneeling knee as close to the ground as possible without touching it.
Step ups can also be performed with or without weights. They are similar to lunges but not quite as difficult; you aren’t forced to lift your whole body weight up from a low point.
You can preform step ups on any flat raised surface such as stairs, a chair, plyobox, or other sturdy platform. The higher your platform, the more difficult the exercise will be (feel the burn!) .
It doesn’t take much to work out your calves at home or in the gym. Calves aren’t a very large muscle, but there are still varying opinions on what makes them grow the fastest. Some believe that low reps with a high weight will do the trick, where others believe that high reps and low weight.
You’ll have to figure out how your body responds to either way and then adjust reps/sets accordingly.
There’s few things that look worse than a well defined upper body, matched with a set of chicken legs. Even if your quads and hamstrings are as shredded as can be, a weak pair of calves are just asking for criticism.
image credit: menshealth.com & fitbie.msn.com