Fitness & Health

Leg Day Circuit

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It’s leg day!

 

A 5 workout leg day circuit targeting all muscles of the legs (quads, calves, hamstrings, and glutes).
Here I used a single 25lb plate with my arms extended overhead.

Leg day is probably the hardest to work, but my favorite mainly because I can really feel it afterwords. Even after my first workout, I’m usually sweaty and I feel as if I did cardio. Plus, who doesn’t like having toned legs? I also think there are a lot of options when it comes to leg day workouts and machines.
Some things to be careful with on leg day:

  • Don’t let your knee go over your ankle otherwise you may end up hurting yourself (specifically with lunges or squats)
  • Ever hear, “lift with your legs, not your back?” Try to work on using your legs in all the workouts and not your back. You may notice when you first do these workouts (especially if you are not used to them), that your lower back will be sore. That means you need to rely more on your leg strength. It takes a lot of thinking while doing the exercise, but then you’ll be working the right area!
  • If you have knee issues you may want to wear a knee brace or sleeve. Hamstring workouts tend to really bother my knees, so I sometimes go lighter on those workouts.

I call this Leg/Underbutt day because it also works the part where your leg meets your butt!
Can’t complain about that right?! 😀

I do 4 sets of each workout. You can decide how many reps to do based on your level of intensity. Over time, you should either increase reps or weight.

In the future, I plan on putting together little workout circuit videos for you visual people. For now though, follow @khvideos on Instagram. She posts a ton of different workout clips that I get ideas from all the time.


Workout: Hamstring Curl
Muscle Group: Hamstrings
Instructions: 

  • laying down for double leg or upright for single leg
  • bring your ankles toward your butt, then slowly extend back to starting position

Workout: Standing Cable Abductor
Muscle Group: Hamstrings
Instructions: 

  • lower the cable to the ground
  • put an ankle strap around your right ankle
  • put left hand on the cable tower to balance
  • lift your leg at an angle and then slowly bring it back in without putting your foot on the ground (you should feel the resistance from the cable)
  • do the same for the left side

Workout: Lunges with Weights
Muscle Group: All
Instructions: 

  • grab dumbbells, kettlebells, or plates (one for each hand) OR you can use a heavier plate and extend your arms overhead (this also helps with balance)
  • these can be stationary or moving (if you have the space)
  • bend your back knee to the ground
  • be sure that your front knee does NOT go over your front toes

Workout: Side Step Up Squats
Muscle Group: Quads
Instructions: 

  • get an aerobic stepper (I use 4 on each side)
  • get a barbell to put on your shoulders
  • start with your right foot firmly planted on the stepper and left foot just barely touching with the balls of your feet
  • with your left leg, bring it out wide down to the ground and squat at the bottom (not just placing foot on the ground and standing…SQUAT!)
  • then use your LEGS to push back up to the stepper
  • try not to rest your left foot on the stepper, just tap it and keep moving
  • this will also require you to engage your core for balance
  • do the same with the left foot planted on the stepper
  • try not to let your knees go over your toes

Workout: Cable Glute Kickbacks
Muscle Group: Hamstrings & Glutes
Instructions: 

  • lower the cable all the way to the ground
  • put your right foot in an ankle strap
  • face the cable tower
  • put both hands around the cable tower and bend at the waist a bit
  • keep your left foot grounded and extend your right foot back and up (like a donkey kicking back)
  • you should try to get your moving leg to be parallel to the floor when you kick back and squeeze your glutes at the top
  • bring your right knee toward the cable tower (so your knee is parallel to the ground) and kickback again
  • you should not be putting your foot down at any point during the reps
  • do the same thing with the left foot in the ankle strap

Leg Day Meme: Courtesy of Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/kaedyn4drake/crossfit/To help alleviate soreness you will (and should) experience and loosen tension in your legs, use a foam roller. You can order on Amazon or your gym might have some in the stretching area. You should also stretch AFTER working out. It’s better to warm up before a workout by doing some quick cardio, practicing movements without weights, and getting your muscles moving. Stretching should be saved for after you have gone through your whole routine though. You don’t want to harm a muscle that isn’t warmed up by stretching it too far.

Did you try these workouts? What was your favorite?

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