Has there ever been a time where you wanted to get a good workout in but didn’t have the time? Or the price of joining a gym was not in the budget? Can’t imagine leaving your kids in a gym while you tried to work out? Today we are going to go over an exercise routine that helps all those problems! I am going to go over 6 simple leg exercises that can be done in the comfort of your home and not take up an entire afternoon.
Before getting into the exercises, I want to go over why we are choosing these specifically. There are dozens of leg-strengthening exercises you can do but a lot of them work the same muscles. If you do a lot of exercises that work the same muscles you will end up getting tired more quickly, increasing injury risk, and decreasing the benefit of the workout (and your time).
The goal of these exercises is to touch on six major muscle groups in your legs and hips. These six groups are your calves, shin muscles, hamstrings, quadriceps, glutes, and hip flexors. These muscle groups bend or straighten your ankles, knees, and hips. Strengthening these groups will ensure a balanced leg workout.
For this exercise, all you need is a single step! Stand on the step so only your toes and the ball of your foot are on the step. While using the wall or railing for balance, stand on one foot. Slowly raise and lower yourself to a comfortable position, with one down and one up motion as one rep. After 10 reps switch to the other foot.
2. Toe-lifts for shin strength
This exercise is like calf raisers, but opposite. Make sure you are near a wall or piece of furniture to help with balance. Using both legs at the same time, raise your toes and the front of your feet as high as you can. Hold this position for 5 seconds and bring your feet back down. As soon as your feet hit the ground lift them back up again. Repeat 10 times.
3.Wall-sits for quadricep strength
Start by resting your back against a blank wall. Carefully slide your back down the wall until your legs are at a 90-degree angle and you appear to be sitting on a chair. Hold this position for 30 seconds – 1 minute.
4.Lunges for hamstring strength
Begin with your feet shoulder width apart. Lunge one foot forward as if you were kneeling to the ground. Don’t let your knee touch! Hold this position for 2 seconds and lift yourself back up. When in the lunging position, don’t let your bent knee go in front of your toes. You should always be able to see the toes of your bent leg. Repeat the exercise with the opposite leg. Alternate between legs until you reach 10 reps each (20 total).
5.Wall Psoas Hold for hip flexor strength
Stand up straight within arm’s reach of a wall or piece of furniture for balance. While keeping a straight back and proper posture, lift one leg so your hip and knee are both at a 90-degree angle. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Slowly lower your leg and repeat the exercise for your other leg. Do this twice for each leg.
6.Bridges for glute strength
Start by lying on your back with both knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Lift your hips as high as you comfortably can, making sure that you are squeezing your glute muscles. Hold this position for 5 seconds and relax back to the floor. Repeat 15 times.
With circuit training like this, it is recommended that you only take 15-30 seconds between each exercise. This short rest period will ensure your heart rate stays up and you get a cardio workout as well!
Once you have gone through all the exercises, Congratulations! You just completed a set. Let yourself rest for 2 minutes while you get a drink of water. Perform two more sets and your workout will be complete!
From start to finish, this workout will take less than 30 minutes. That is less time than it would take to drive to and from the gym! If you perform this workout twice per week and our core workout twice per week you will see a huge gain in strength and cardiovascular benefits! Not to mention you will feel great too!
If you want even more healthy living advice, check out our recipes and health blogs as well!