Fun news here! We’re partnering up with the good peeps at PaleoHacks to bring you some new recipes (like this immunity-boosting soup), workouts, tips, and more! PaleoHacks is a top source for amazing Paleo recipes, fitness tips, and wellness advice to help you live life to the fullest. Read on for a leg workout that you can do at home — and stay tuned for more healthy content from them in the coming weeks.
Some would say that nothing feels better than a good leg day. You feel a little sore, but sweaty and strong, like you can take on anything!
Strong legs carry you through life. They allow you to hike up a mountain, ride a bike on the boardwalk, run through a park, and jump into a lake. While this may sound a bit romanticized, it’s true. Part of practicing self love is making sure that you are strong enough to do all of the things that you want to do in life, and having a good workout routine can ensure that.
The good news is that you don’t have to pay for an expensive gym membership or buy special equipment to get these benefits. In fact, all you really need is your bodyweight and set of dumbbells to get leg day in right at home. You can even alternate it with your at-home cardio day using these 10 high-intensity interval training moves!
So get ready to build some strong legs from the comfort of your home with this leg workout. We recommend doing it one to two times per week and always starting with a 5-minute warm-up, like walking or jogging. Perform the routine like a circuit, doing each exercise back-to-back and then resting at the end. Repeat the circuit two to three times. You’ll need an exercise mat, a chair, and two light-to-moderate weight dumbbells.
Bird Dog: 12 reps
This exercise will warm up your legs and core, and get your butt muscles firing.
- Start in a tabletop position on your hands and knees on your mat. Spread your fingers wide and engage your abs.
- Inhale to reach your right arm forward and your left leg straight back behind you. Pause and feel your glutes, back, and rear delts engage.
- Return to tabletop position, then switch by lifting your left arm and right leg.
- Continue alternating for 12 reps.
Sumo Squats: 15 reps
These specialty squats will give you a strong booty, quads, and outer thighs. If you are new to working out, you can do this exercise without the dumbbell.
- Start standing with your feet a little wider than your hips, toes pointed out at 45 degrees. Hold one dumbbell out in front of your chest.
- Engage your abs and squeeze your shoulder blades together as you inhale and bend your knees, sitting your hips back and down into a squat. Make sure that your weight stays slightly back in your heels.
- Exhale to stand back up, squeezing your glutes at the top. Repeat for 15 reps.
Chair Pistol Squat: 5 reps per side
This exercise will challenge your glutes, thighs, and core to create strength in your entire lower half.
- Sit on the edge of a chair with your feet together. Reach your arms straight out in front of you and engage your abs. Pick your left foot up and straighten the leg out in front of you.
- Press into your right foot and exhale to stand all the way up, keeping the left leg lifted.
- Then inhale to slowly lower yourself back down to a seat.
- Repeat for 5 reps, then switch sides.
Note: As you become stronger, play with just tapping your hips down between each rep, rather than sitting all the way back down.
Single-Leg Deadlift: 10 reps per side
This stability exercise will give you strong hips, glutes, hamstrings, and calves.
- Begin standing with your hands holding the ends of a single dumbbell. Engage your abs and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
- Point your left toes back behind you on the ground. With your weight on your right foot, inhale to lift your left leg up and back while you simultaneously lower your torso forward and down. Keep your back straight and shoulders back the entire time.
- Exhale to return to a standing position and squeeze your glutes.
- Repeat for 10 reps, then switch legs.
Straight-Leg Deadlifts: 15 reps
This exercise builds a strong booty, core, and hamstrings.
- Stand with your feet hip-width distance apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand. Bring the dumbbells in front of your thighs. Engage your abs and bring a small bend into both knees.
- Inhale to hinge at the hips and slide the dumbbells down your thighs towards your knees until you feel a stretch through the hamstrings. Make sure to keep your back straight the whole time.
- Then, exhale and squeeze your glutes as you stand back up. Repeat for 15 reps.
Curtsey Lunges: 8 reps per side
This exercise incorporates lateral movement to strengthen your hips, inner thighs, and core.
- Start standing with your feet hip-width distance apart. Use both hands to hold a dumbbell in front of your chest.
- Shift your weight into your right foot. Pick up your left foot and step it back and behind your right leg, then bend both knees to come into a curtsy. Make sure your right knee is stacked right over the ankle.
- Exhale to step your left foot back up to meet your right. Switch legs, then continue alternating for a total of 16 reps.
Burpee Step Backs: 10 reps
This exercise will not only strengthen your legs and core, but it will also give you a heart-strengthening cardio pump!
- Begin standing with your hands down by your sides.
- Bend at the knees and place your hands on the ground under your shoulders. Step your right foot back and then your left to come into a high plank position. Feel your abs strengthening.
- Step your right foot behind your right wrist and then your left foot behind your left wrist.
- Press into your feet and jump up, reaching your arms towards the sky.
- Repeat for 5 reps leading with your right foot, then do 5 reps leading with your left foot.
Note: If you have any knee issues, skip the jump at the end of your burpee.
Feel stronger already? If you liked this article, you might also enjoy these nine easy stretches that release lower back and hip pain! –Kelly Collins