We love leg day. There’s nothing like it. Your legs contain the biggest muscle groups in your body, so on leg day you can lift more and burn more than on days you focus on upper body or abs. Try these exercises alone or in combination when you stop by our East Texas gym today.
These two exercises are intermediate level and work quadriceps and hamstrings. They’re super-intense, so schedule them at the beginning of your workout.
Snatch — Grab a barbell and add weight. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart with the barbell at the toes of your feet.
Bend your knees and keep your back flat. Face your palms toward the floor and grab the bar slightly wider than shoulder width. Lower your hips like you’re going to sit back into a chair.
Push with your feet and at the same time, lift the bar. When it hits about mid-thigh, explode with your legs and turn that into a complete extension.
Allow your knees to bend as you elevate the bar overhead. The bar should be above and slightly behind your head. Stand up. Control the weight as you return it to the floor. That’s one.
The Power Clean is similar. The main difference is instead of exploding into a complete extension after you explode with your legs you “flip” the weight around and transition before you lift it completely overhead. Click the links to see a video demonstration of each.
Use the squat rack located near the bathrooms for safety. To start, place the bar around shoulder level at the right height for you. Load the bar, then step under. Rest the bar across your shoulders just below your neck.
Grab the bar palms up and push with your legs to lift it. Take a step away from the rack and stand with feet about shoulder width apart, toes pointed out. Keep your head up and back straight.
Bend your knees like you’re sitting back into a chair. Lower until your hamstrings touch your calves.
Push through the heel as you stand back up. Fully extend your hips. That’s one rep. Click here for a video.
Increase your heart rate and work your calves by drawing an imaginary box on the floor. Start on one foot and jump to the four corners of the box, one right after the other. Land lightly with knees slightly bent. Complete 10 laps around the “box” with each leg.
Split squats are performed weighted with one leg forward and the other leg back. Bulgarian split squats are similar, but the back leg is elevated. Use the machine on the restroom side about a third of the way across the floor from the mirrors or pull a stool over to the squat rack. Here’s a video.
We love these because they activate stabilizing muscles and get you moving around the gym. Grab a barbell or two dumbbells to work your thighs and glutes.
Walk to the middle pathway so you have plenty of room. Take a big step forward and lunge, keeping your knees behind your toes and moving your body straight down.
When you step back up, push through the heel in your front leg. Repeat with the other leg. Most people can do 20 lunges from one side of the gym to the other. Shake it off and do 20 the other direction. If you get tired, set down your weights but finish the set.
Mix in some core and cardio while you take a break from the heavy weight. Start in the plank position supporting your upper body weight on your hands.
In one explosive motion, jump your feet forward and stand in a wide squat, raising your hands in front of your face like you’re ready for a karate chop.
Jump your feet back to the starting position in high plank. Repeat 15 times as quickly as possible.
What are your favorite leg exercises? Let us know in the comments.