A lot of people write to me, wanting to know my "secret" to lean, tight legs. I wish I had the "secret." Unfortunately, the answer is not a secret pill, or jumping rope for 5 minutes a day. The truth is, after years of training others and myself, I have learnt that LEG DAY is actually not meant to be done once in a while; and no, spinning class does not constitute as leg day.
To see changes in your lower half, you need to train legs at least two times a week (in most cases I would say 3). They should also be given a substantial weight load. No dumbbell squats here, unless it is your conditioning day. Get comfortable with the Olympic Rack- it should become your best friend! Compound movements are best for your first few sets- focussing on Deadlifting, squatting and lunging. I like to add in some isolation and holding patterns as well, such as unilateral gluteus bridges, unilateral deadlifts and wall sits.
Try the following workout on your next leg day - which should be tomorrow:)
2)a) Hip Thrusts with Plate or Barbell
Conventional Deadlift - 5 sets - 8-10 reps. Keep back neutral, go as low as you can without compromising form. Dig heels into ground. Little rest between sets.
- with your back on a bench, lower down so you are almost sitting on the floor. Thrust pelvis to the sky, pushing your heels into the ground and squeezing for 4 second hold at the top. 4 sets of 15 reps. Superset with 2)b)
2)b) Stability Ball Roll holds- as with the pelvis thrust, we will hold the top of the movement for 4 seconds. Roll the ball back out and right back into the curl again. push through the heels.4 sets 15 reps. rest 1 minute in between sets.
3) Heavy Walking lunges
- instead of the standard dumbbells at your sides, try and "front load" your walking lunge with a sandbag, kettle bell or medicine ball. Your core will be challenged. 20 lunges. Bringing the knee just above the ground. Push up through the heel. 3 sets superset with 3)b)
3)b) Lateral Lunges-
with the Olympic bar on your back, start in regular squat position. Bring one leg out laterally, putting all of the weight on the one leg, keeping the other leg straight. Push up off the bent leg with the resistance and come back to start position. Complete number of reps on 1st side before switching legs. 12 per side. 3 sets. Rest 1 minute between sets.
: end your leg session with SLED SPRINTS! Chose a weight that you can push with a sprint. Sprint across the allotted sled area as fast as possible. Then wait 10 seconds, and repeat. Do this for 8 rounds. If you don't not have access to a sled, then perform the Tabata 20:10 ratio for 8 rounds on a step mill machine. BURN!
Don't forget to rock and foam ROLL after this session. Your legs will thank me:)