Legs might show more in the warmer months but unfit legs are hard to hide in jeans or even yoga pants so fit, toned legs are in year-round. Here are a few simple tips on how you can lose weight and burn fat to improve the appearance of your legs.
How to Lose Leg Fat Fast and Safely
Whether you want to build up your legs or you’d like to see them smaller, for a toned appearance, you will need to burn fat which means you’ll need to lose weight to lose fat even if you’re not looking for the scale to drop. Any plan that promises you’ll ‘get skinny quick’ is probably too good to be true but that doesn’t mean you’re destined to a complicated new routine. You can still enjoy easy-to-follow diet and exercise tips that produce results. Even better, you can do it safely and effectively. Of course, you should check with your doctor before you start any new diet or exercise routine.
Losing Weight from your Legs in 1-3 Weeks
So, how can you lose weight, burn fat and get fit legs fast? Since the 1950s, we’ve thought that 3500 calories equals a pound so if you want to lose one pound, you would need to create a calorie deficit of 3500 calories to do so but in recent years, more and more experts are denouncing this ‘rule’ because caloric needs vary so much from one individual to another and they have found that this overestimates weight loss for most men and women unless they are overweight or obese. Not only will your own personal number vary from your friend’s but it will vary at different times in your weight loss journey so, it’s not your imagination, it is harder to lose weight, the closer you get to your goal. If you want to know more about your personal calorie needs, visit a nutritionist or utilize several online calculators but, even if the ‘3500 calorie rule’ isn’t true, everyone still needs to create a deficit through a decrease in calorie intake or an increase in calories burned to lose weight. Here are some steps to get you there.
Step 1: Increase your cardiovascular activity. Again, even if you’re happy with the number on the scale and just want tighter legs, we all need regular cardiovascular exercise for a healthy heart. Not to mention, cardio will help burn fat better and faster than anything else. The bad news is that you cannot ‘spot reduce’ any specific area of the body but the good news is that, while your goal is fit legs, cardio will help burn fat and reveal muscle in all areas of the body!
Step 2: Decrease your calorie intake…but not too much. Use an online calculator to determine your basal metabolic rate. This is the amount of calories you would burn if all you did was stay in bed all day. Do not let your calorie intake drop below this number. While it seems that would allow you to drop weight super fast, it’s not that simple. If your body thinks it’s starving, it will start to store fat, in anticipation of famine. This is a blessing since you need enough fuel to keep your brain and the rest of your body functioning properly so thank biology that short-term starvation is a road block on your weight loss journey and a stall in your ability to burn fat and get fit.
Shed Leg Fat in 4 Weeks to 2 Months
If you have some time to reach your goal, you can incorporate even more simple lifestyle changes to lose weight fast and increase your chances of keeping it off and enjoying your results long-term.
Step 3: Lift weights. Just like you need cardio even if you want to build up your legs, you need strength training, even if you want skinny legs because building muscle will help burn fat. Unlike with cardio, you actually can ‘spot train’ specific areas of your body so, for quick results, target the areas you want to improve first and save the rest for when you have extra time in your workout. Focus on lunges, squats, leg lifts and anything that creates that burn in the quadriceps (front of the thighs) and hamstrings (back of the thighs).
Step 4: Fine tune your diet. Counting calories may be a quick and somewhat easy way to lose weight fast but to get and stay fit, move beyond simple calorie-counting. For most people, it isn’t practical to calorie-count long-term and nutrition is so much more than just calories. Again, you can visit a nutritionist for the most accurate and personalized diet recommendations but here are a few simple ways you can improve your diet on your own. Start to pay attention to how you feel after you eat and make sure you’re getting adequate protein and fiber in your diet to assist with satiety and digestion. Also, to avoid bloating (and the appearance of additional weight and fat), limit processed foods, added sugar, sodium and artificial sweeteners.
Step 5: Manage stress and sleep. Just like nutrition is so much more than calories, weight loss and fat loss is so much more than diet and exercise. More and more personal trainers are realizing the benefits of adequate sleep and stress management techniques when it comes to achieving a fit figure. High stress and not enough sleep can lead to hormone imbalances and excess fat storage so examine how you can improve in these areas to increase your success. One way to relax muscles is to foam roll. Not only will it help with muscle recovery and flexibility but regular foam rolling can help reduce the appearance of cellulite which you might find lingers, even after a diet and exercise makeover.
No matter how close or far your goal is to get in shape and lose leg fat, you can accomplish results fast with these simple tips. Incorporate as many as you can in the timeframe that works for your goal.