One thing I cannot stand seeing at the gym is guys with “yield sign-shaped” bodies. You know, the guys who have a big upper-body but puny legs. Oh, you’re one of those guys? Well, you’ve arrived at the right article! These 5 leg-building exercises will enable you to feel comfortable wearing shorts.
One of the most effective leg-building exercises, squats build practically every inch of your lower-body by attacking your quads, hamstrings, calves and more. The most effective way to build your legs doing squats is with a barbell across your back. Choose a moderate to heavy weight that you can do 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps with. After your first day doing barbell squats you’ll be sore as hell and walking like a toddler for the next few days but your legs will be making their way towards “swole-ville”.
No, you don’t have to climb a mountain but this exercise is still tough. Mountain climbers are a great exercise to build muscular legs as well as working your shoulders, arms and core. In addition, this exercise is a cardio-builder too as it taxes your heart and lungs too. It may not be as tough as climbing a mountain, but it will make your physique so appealing that the girls will want to climb you!
It’s time to get your legs into the “swing” of things. Most people think kettlebell swings involves just swinging the kettlebell up with their upper-body. Wrong! Performing the perfect kettlebell swing places all the emphasis on the posterior chain – the major muscles on the backside of your body from your heels to the base of your neck; primarily the hamstrings, glutes, and low back. In other words, your legs are what truly propels (or swings) the kettlebell.
If squats were a father, then lunges would be his illegitimate son. The lunge is a great movement for developing your thighs and strengthening your hips. The best aspect of this exercise is it gives you an opportunity to correct any strength imbalances (which increase your risk of injury) by focusing individually on each leg. From my experience, dumbbell lunges are better than the barbell version because they allow for more flexibility.
If muscular, well-balanced legs are what you’re hungry for, then deadlifts should be on your exercise menu. Deadlifts are superb for building and strengthening your entire lower-body, especially your hamstrings. Most people believe that squats are the king of all exercises, but while squats stimulate multiple muscle groups like deadlifts, they also have a negative lifting phase (lowering down the weight) while deadlifts do not. In other words, you can only successfully complete a deadlift rep by using your own strength. That’s why most powerlifting competitions use deadlifts as one of the exercises to test strength.
So there you have it. Adding these exercises to your workout repertoire will alleviate you of “chicken leg” syndrome.