About Toning Your Inner Thighs and Sculpting the Perfect Legs
The thigh exercises you’re about to learn are going to be the basis for your thigh-sculpting challenge. But as you know, you can’t specifically target just the fat on your inner thighs. In order to lose fat on any part of your body, you need to incorporate full-body strength moves to build lean muscle. This lean muscle will not only make your thighs take on a strong, athletic appearance, it’ll also give your metabolism a bump in the right direction helping you to burn fat even when you’re not making the sweat run.
If you, like many women, store fat on your thighs, it’s probably the last place you’ll lose fat. This can be frustrating, but don’t get discouraged. If you stick to these thigh workouts, you’ll definitely see some changes taking place.
The thigh exercises in this 30 day leg challenge will support your goals in so many ways.
First, these thigh exercises for women are far more effective than sitting on the hip adduction machine at the gym, not to mention being way less awkward. These thigh workouts target your entire lower body and challenge your core. The more muscles you use at once, the more calories and fat you burn along the way.
And for an extra fat-blasting bonus, kettlebell swings are performed 2-3 times each week to really maximize your calorie burn. Exactly how much can kettlebells help in your fat loss venture? Well, a study performed by the American Council on Exercise found that during a 20-minute kettlebell workout subjects burned an average of 20.2 calories per minute! So, ya, it’s a pretty effective tool.
Once you start shedding body fat through these exercises (and a healthy diet!), you’ll soon reveal trim, toned thighs and be ready to rock those shorts and that skirt you’ve been saving for a rainy day.
You’ll strengthen and tone your entire lower body over the course of the 30 day leg challenge. These specific thigh exercises were selected because they can be done at home or at the gym with minimal equipment. Plus, each inner thigh workout consists of just 3 quick exercises. You really have no excuse to skip one of your workouts!
30 Day Thigh Challenge Exercises
The sumo squat is an effective inner thigh workout around. This squat variation takes a wider-than-normal stance to target the muscles of the inner thigh, especially your hip adductors. It can be done as a bodyweight exercise, but I recommend holding a kettlebell or a single dumbbell. A barbell is another option if you’re a heavy lifter.
Grab the head of a dumbbell with both hands and hold the weight down at arm’s length. Take a stance where your feet are about double shoulder-width apart. Your toes should point slightly outward — the same direction as you knees. Brace your core and squat down as deep as you can. The weight will nearly touch the floor. Push back up to the starting position and repeat all reps. To really get a burn going, move in a slow and controlled manner — your inner thighs will love you for it.
Single Leg Romanian Deadlift
This single-leg variant of the straight-leg deadlift works your glutes, hamstrings, inner thighs, and core. Unilateral exercises are a great way to ensure muscle balance throughout your body. Forcing your body to work one side at a time will keep your dominant side from compensating for your weak side — we all have one.
Hold a pair of dumbbells down at arm’s length with an overhand grip. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart. Hinge at the hips and allow your right leg to lift up off the ground until the leg is extended out behind you. Your torso should be nearly parallel to the floor. Contract your glutes and hamstrings to return to the starting position and repeat all reps on one side before working the other leg. Try to keep your body straight even as your balance is tested.
Side lunges are one of the best thigh exercises to incorporate into an inner thigh workout. You’ll really feel the hip adductors working in each lunge (and probably for a couple days after). This can be done as a bodyweight exercise, but I suggest holding a dumbbell in each hand.
Hold a pair of dumbbells at arm’s length with a neutral grip. Lift your left foot and take a big step to the left. Send your hips back and lower your body by bending your left knee. Your right foot will remain flat on the floor. Lower down until your left thigh is parallel to the floor and your right leg is straight. Push back to the starting position. Repeat all reps on one side before switching.
Sumo Kettlebell Deadlift
The 30 day leg challenge would not be complete without a sumo deadlift. Like the sumo squat, this inner thigh workout incorporates a wide stance. This stance puts extra emphasis onto your thigh muscles, especially those inner thighs. And like all deadlifts, these are also great for your lower back, glutes, and core. Be sure to use a heavy enough weight!
Take a wide stance as in the sumo squat with your toes turned slightly out. Place a kettlebell on the ground between your heels. Hinge at the hips and reach for the kettlebell. Drive your feet into the floor, pressing through your heels and pull the weight up with you until you’re standing straight again. Lower the weight back down and repeat without letting go of the handle between reps.
Hip Raise with Knee Squeeze
This simple exercise is just a standard hip raise with the addition of a prop. By squeezing an object between your knees, you’re forced to engage your hip adductors. If you find that your knees are opening and you’re “dropping” your prop, you probably need to spend more time on your inner thigh workouts.
Lie on your back on the floor with bent knees and your feet flat on the floor. Place the narrowest side of a yoga block or a rolled-up towel between your knees. Raise your hips until your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees. Avoid lifting your hips too high, this can cause stress on the low back. Don’t let your yoga block slip! Pause at the top and then lower back down to the ground. For an extra boost, perform 10 pulses at the end of each set to really get those glutes firing.
Standing Hip Adduction
Standing hip adductions are just a fancy way of saying “leg swings.” But they’re a simple and effective inner thigh workout that you can do anywhere to tone your legs.
Stand in a neutral position and rest your right hand on something sturdy like a chair, bar, or piece of gym equipment. Lift your left leg away from the body. That’s your starting position. Sweep your left leg across your body and in front of your right leg. Then return to the starting position. Move in a slow, controlled manner to avoid cheating by using momentum to move your leg rather than your actual muscles. Use a resistance band, cable machine, or ankle weights to add resistance and further improve muscle strength in your inner thighs. Complete all reps on one leg before switching sides.
Kettlebell swings, an amazing total body workout, are one of the best thigh workouts for women. Although they look like they’d be more of an upper body exercise, the power for a kettlebell swing comes directly from the legs and hips. Swings work your entire lower body, your core, shoulders, and give you a big cardio boost, especially if you’re working in the high rep range. The power of your glutes and thighs initiate the explosive kettlebell swing. You’ll be burning maximum calories while you sweat!
Grab a kettlebell handle with both hands and hold it in front of your body at arm’s length. Keeping your chest up and shoulders back, hinge at the hips, bend your knees, and sink into your heels. Thrust your hips forward, straighten your legs, and swing the kettlebell up to chest height. Remember, it’s the power generated by your hips that causes the ‘bell to swing up, not your arms. Your arms should merely act as a pendulum to swing the bell. Squat back down, allowing the kettlebell to come down between your legs, and repeat the prescribed number of swings.
Goddess Pose (Utkata Konasana)
This yoga posture is meant to help you discover your inner goddess. It just happens to also be an intense workout for your inner thighs! In addition to strengthening your thighs, this pose also stretches your hips, groin, and chest. And as a final bonus, it’s great for core strength, too! Our advice, do this pose at the end of your inner thigh workout to stretch those muscles — it might just keep you from getting as sore as you otherwise might.
Start in a standing position with your feet about 3 feet apart and your arms up overhead. Turn your feet out about 45-degrees. Exhale and bend your knees to begin a wide squat. Keep your arms active, your shoulders back and down, and your knees back. Breathe deeply throughout the pose for the required amount of time.
Now, let’s get rockin’ with this 30 Day Leg Challenge!!
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