We do not do anything throughout our day that does not require the use of our legs. Walking, stairs, standing, sitting, dancing, running, etc., our legs are the most used muscle group out of any, and each movement calls for them to lift most of our entire body weight. However, after ‘leg day’ we look at every incline or stair case with dread as we know the pain that follows.
Legs can be worked out with some simple body weight exercises that take advantage of what we do every day already. All we have to do is set aside the thought of future pain and put our body in motion.
Here are some body weight exercises:
Heel rockers – this is a great exercise to warm up your legs and build muscle. Stand flat footed with feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your heels so you are standing on your tip-toes and feel the flex in your calves. Then slowly lower yourself to flat foot and then raise your toes so you are standing directly on your heels and feel some flex in your shin muscles. That is one rep.
High kicks – this exercise is exactly what it sounds like. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and then raise your left leg while keeping it very straight. Lower it back to the starting position and do the same with the right leg. This is one rep. Your goal is to get it at least parallel to the ground or higher. You want to control the swing and make sure you do not throw a muscle. Also, controlling the leg gets a better work out for the muscles. This is a great exercise for runners as it builds your quads and hip muscles.
Alternating Lunges – the last exercise is going to be lunges. Lunges start with feet shoulder-width apart and then step out with the left leg until your left quad is parallel to the ground and your right knee is almost touching or just barely touching the ground. Bring your leg back to the starting position and repeat with the right. This is one rep.
These three exercises are very simple to do and work almost every leg muscle. The best part is that you can do them anywhere and at any time. So, take advantage of your body weight and strengthen these muscles that carry you everywhere.