Strong thighs save lives. A lot of people dread leg day, but it’s always worth it. If you want strong and healthy legs or if one of your goals is to tone/slim down your thighs, these exercises (many of them will be familiar to you), this is the blog for you.
Quick disclaimer, if you want to shed fat in your thighs, these exercises alone won’t do that for you. You’ll have to burn fat overall AND strengthen your thighs. Targeting fat loss isn’t a thing, and if I knew how to do that, I’d be rich.
The good news is that doing these exercises will also burn fat, so you’re pretty much set. Doing functional exercises and training for strength AND endurance is ideal for building strong thighs.
So, onto the exercises. Like I said, many of these are probably already in your routine, like squats, lunges, and glute bridges. But knowing about different variations will also push you to use muscles that you don’t normally work out.
Squats: Squats are an exercise that never stops giving. Some others that will burn your thighs are…
Sumo Squats: These are like regular squats but legs are farther than hip/shoulder-width apart and feet are angled out at 45 degrees. This exercise really targets your inner thighs.
Side-to-Side Squats: Start standing with feet hip-width apart. Then take a step out to one side and squat down. Return to center and step out to the opposite side for another squat. Rinse and repeat. You’ll feel the burn, hopefully on your outer thighs.
Knee to Squat: Start with knees on the floor, shoulder-width apart. You can clasp and hold your hands out in front of your chest. Then, while staying low to the ground, bring one leg up after the other to get into a squat position. Don’t fully stand up at any point during this exercise!
Lunges: There are so many great variations of lunges, but these exercises are particularly good because you’re working out one side at a time.
Side/Lateral lunges: You can take a step out to the side and lunge, or don’t move your feet and lunge from side to side.
Curtsy/cross-body lunge: Start at center with your legs shoulder-width apart. Lift one leg and step behind and to the opposite side, lunging in an exaggerated curtsy. Repeat for the other side.
Bulgarian Split Squat: Although it’s called a “squat,” I’m putting it under “lunges” because you’re working on a single side at a time. This exercise will probably take some trial and error to get the distance between you and the chair/bench just right.
Other great thigh-building exercises to incorporate into your routine include (but are not limited to) wall sits, box jumps, and single-leg glute bridges.
All of these exercises you can do at home, (except for the box jumps) so now’s the time to lunge and squat your way to stronger thighs!