Here is my guide to a killer leg day at the gym here on campus. Reminder, you only need to do a leg workout 2-3 times a week.
10 Minutes, Stretch and Foam Roll
It is critical to make sure that you spend a good few minutes listening to your body and stretching out your muscles to avoid injury or unnecessary soreness following your workout. Foam rollers can help break down scar tissue and speed up the recovery process for your muscles after a heavy lifting day.
12-15 Minutes, Cardio Warm Up
Usually, I will either go on the bike for my cardio warm up. Since it is a leg day, we don’t want to engage in a HIIT workout or to tire our legs out too much before we can get to lifting and activation work.
Activation Exercises and Body Weight
Start with 40 hip thrusts with a resistance band and make sure to squeeze your booty when your hips are up. Do not rush the exercise and try to focus on your mind to muscle connection for the best results. I would do these exercises in one of the lower level rooms that has plenty of space and the yoga mats.
Next, try 40 jumping squats. Don’t let your knees pass your toes.
Time for donkey kicks ... use leg weights and do 50 kick backs on each leg.
Try to do 10 crab walks from one side of the room to the other with a resistance band.
Reminder: Stay hydrated and take a short rest if needed. Don’t push yourself to a point that is unhealthy, but remember, a little bit of pain is good.
Time to lunge! Try this: 30 alternating lunges, 30 bouncing lunges each leg, 30 side lunges.
Time To Add Weight
I normally start with 4 sets of 8 on the hip abduction. You can adjust the weight to what is most challenging for you.
Next, maybe have a friend spot you for some barbell squats. If you don’t love the barbell, you can use the smith machine. For those who don’t want to do either of those options, you can use the highest weight dumbbells upstairs and hold one in each hand for some squats in the stretching area or on the track. I would also do 4 sets of 8 reps with weight for squats. Keep squeezing the booty.
You could finish with the seated leg press and do the magic 4 sets of 8 reps at whatever weight you are comfortable with using.
Extra: If you want to challenge yourself even more, try doing sumo squats with weight or some of the lunges that we did earlier, but with weights.
10-20 Minute Cool Down
Spend some time doing cardio to cool down. Maybe try 20 minutes of the glute toning exercise on the Arc Trainer or the fat burning mode on the stair machine. You could end by stretching and rolling out downstairs.
Enjoy your workout! Please note that I am not a professional. Do your own research and decide what you think is the best workout for you and remember to stay hydrated and eat plenty of protein after your workout for optimal recovery.