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31. Stop Trying to Spot Reduce
Sorry, the thigh master alone will not get rid of inner thigh bulges no matter how many squeezes you give it. To rid your body of excess fat in certain spots, like around the hips and thighs, youll need to reduce your overall body fat with a total body strength and cardio routine and a balanced diet. Remember that you may see results last in the areas you are hoping to get rid of first (inner thighs) and first in the areas you want to keep (like your breasts).
32. Dont Neglect Your Diet
Even the best workout routine cant make up for a crummy diet. Make sure to supplement your hard work at the gym with a healthy, balanced diet that contains enough calories to lose (or maintain) your weight. Eat whole, unprocessed foods and drink plenty of water to ensure your body has the nutrients it needs to stay energized and perform well during your training sessions.
33. Get Off the Machines at the Gym
Those weight machines at the gym may look impressive, but they arent helping you build an impressive physique. Youll burn more calories and work more muscles at once by doing a side lunge instead of using an isolation equipment piece like the adductor machine. During a side lunge there is a lot of balance and stability required, thus meaning more work by the adductors (or inner thigh muscles). In addition to strengthening the ligaments of the knee, all the other muscles in the legs are being worked as well quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves. The more muscles being worked, the more energy being burned, which means leaner, stronger legs faster, says Dominic Lucibello, a certified strength and conditioning specialist and owner of Breakthrough Fitness in Orlando, Florida.
34. Sprint for Lean Legs
Sprints are cardio intervals, bringing the heart rate up fast and then letting it come down in between. This boosts metabolism and burns more calories than jogging at a steady rate and is a great way to get leaner legs, says Tom Holland, star of the Supreme 90 Day DVD System. Start incorporating sprints into your next cardio workout by moving as fast as you can for 15 seconds (with plenty of recovery in between) up to three times during your session.
35. Stand Up More Often During Your Day
Getting out of your chair more frequently during the day will not only help work your legs more, it may also help shrink your waistline and improve your health. A recent study from the University of Queensland, Australia found that out of 5,000 office workers, those who stood more often during their work day had a waist size that was 4.1 cm smaller and lower levels of bad cholesterol and blood glucose than those who stayed seated. Aim to stand up for at least 15 minutes out of every hour while on the job for faster results.
36. Foam Roll Your Legs
Think about it this way: when your jeans first come out of the dryer, they are hard to move around in comfortably, right? Tight muscles feel the same way. Foam rolling acts like a deep tissue massage that can help release adhesions in your muscles that may be limiting your range of motion or performance during your workouts. Iron out the kinks in your legs before your workout for better exercise performance and ultimately, better results.
37. Hit Up Some High Intensity Intervals
Rather than spend hours on the elliptical, cut your workout time down with high intensity intervals, says Geoff Bagshaw, area group fitness manager for Equinox in Miami. Intervals, short bursts of maximum effort cardio followed by rest periods, along with resistance training, will elevate the rate you burn calories, helping to torch fat and increase lean muscle to give you the tone and definition youre looking for.
38. Train From All Angles
Be sure to train from all angles. Often we get stuck in a rut and use the same exercises over and over again. Mix up your leg training to target all those lower body muscles from different angles, says Bagshaw. At a loss for ideas? Book a session with a trainer to have them develop a program you can work with that has you lunging and squatting through all planes of movement.
39. Hold It
At the end of every set, try to hold a contracted position (like the bottom of a squat) for as long as you can. This is called an isometric contraction and will help you get stronger through the toughest parts of range of motion, says Jeff Dolgan, a clinical exercise physiologist at Canyon Ranch in Miami Beach, Florida.
40. Slow Down
The lowering phase of leg exercises such as squats and lunges (the eccentric contraction) is the period when strength gains typically will occur. This is often referred to as a negative load because although you are not pushing weight, your muscle fibers are still contracting, says Dolgan. Many people make the mistake of moving through the eccentric phase too quickly. The maximum speed you should lower your body is 4 seconds from standing to full bend.
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