Getting in shape takes a lot of effort, and it can be quite frustrating if you can’t seem to see any results. Each part of your body requires attention, and there is no catchall exercise that would target every area at once.
One of the most common problem areas is the thighs. If you have been engaging in exercises that focus on your thighs but you are still not seeing any changes, you might be doing something wrong. So before you even think of giving up, find out if there is anything you could do — or avoid — to improve your regimen. Here are some of the common mistakes when trying to tone your thighs.
1. Having Unrealistic Expectations
First of all, take a moment to assess your expectations. It would take a few weeks before you start seeing improvements in your thighs, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you have been working out for just a couple of weeks. Continue doing exercises for your lower body three times a week, and you might start seeing results somewhere around four to six weeks in.
2. Doing the Wrong Exercises
No matter what your body type, you could find the right exercise to get the thighs you want. However, you do need to know what kind of exercise would benefit your body type the most. For example, short legs would look thicker in appearance if you build too much muscle doing heavy weight exercises. Omitting the weights when doing squats and lunges would be more suitable for toning shorter legs, with about 12 to 18 repetitions. Doing cardio exercises could also contribute to better results. However, if you have thin legs, activities such as long-distance running would break down the muscle in your legs and would just make them look skinnier. Such a body type would benefit from weighted exercises that would help build your muscle.
3. Not Doing Lunges Effectively
The clockwork lunge is a convenient exercise that you could do right in your own home without the need for any equipment. It targets not only your thighs but also your legs and buttocks. It is also an effective way to get rid of cellulite.
Doing clockwork lunges is simple. To get started, hold your legs together and imagine that you are standing in the center of a clock. Take a step forward with your right foot at the 12 o’clock position, lowering yourself into a front lunge. Then move back to your original position bringing your feet together. Next, step your right foot to the side at the 3 o’clock position, lowering yourself into a full squat. Then go back again to your original position with your feet together. Finally, step your right foot back at the 6 o’clock position, lowering yourself into a reverse lunge. Then once again go back to the starting position with your feet held together. Repeat these movements on your left foot, and do four reps on each leg. Make sure to do each step in succession with no pause in between.
4. Not Focusing on Other Leg Muscles
Working out your thighs might give them a better tone, but if you want your legs to have a shapely look, make sure you focus on your other leg muscles as well. Other areas you might need to work on to get a sculpted look are your inner thighs and hamstrings. Giving equal attention to every part of your legs would not only make them look better but would also make you less susceptible to injuries. Find out what exercises would tone these areas and add them to your workout regimen.
5. Doing Too Little Cardio
Doing leg exercises alone might not be enough to get your thighs in shape. If you are still not seeing any changes despite engaging in a regular leg workout routine, you might need to do more cardio. Spinning is a great option if you are pressed for time. You can burn up to 420 to 780 calories per hour with the pedaling. If you don’t have access to equipment, climbing stairs and walking up inclines are good alternatives, especially if these are already part of your regular route.
6. Using Too Little Weight
If you have already been working out for some time or if your workout has become less challenging, you would need to increase your weights to add resistance to your exercises. If you have been doing lunges and squats without any weights, start by adding a couple of 8-pound dumbbells to your routine. Whenever you feel like your regimen is becoming too easy, increase the weights by a couple of pounds.
7. Eating the Wrong Food
When trying to get yourself in shape, exercise is not the only factor to consider. You also need to watch what you eat. Get more of the food that would benefit you and eat less of the rest, if not totally cut them out of your diet. Protein is important for building muscle. It also increases your metabolism, which would help you get rid of all the extra fat faster. Aside from that, make sure you also get lots of nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables, as well as some of the good fat.
Acquainting yourself with these common mistakes will guide you in establishing a more effective workout regimen. With just a little patience and perseverance, you could get the toned thighs and sculpted legs that you have always wanted.