leg exercises

Top 5 reasons for leg training this summer

Check out 5 reasons why you should start preparing yourself for the summer with leg training


Faya Nilsson fitnessontoast

With warmer weather breezing in getting outside to improve your fitness is fantastic – it’s a great environment to be in and you also get the benefits of lots of fresh air. My favourite way to maximise my time is to train my legs, which I think is one of the most important parts of getting ready for summer. In reality, the musculature in our legs can facilitate some of the most primal movements that we humans are capable of performing; we crouch, we run, we reach up on tip-toes, because of the resilience, power and elasticity of these muscles – did you know that our legs are the largest muscle group in our bodies.  This post focusses on the top 5 reasons to train this critical muscle group!

1) PLAY THE LONG GAME:

Training legs will look after your body way into the future. Aside from the cosmetic benefit of pursuing body-symmetry (especially helpful if you’re looking to wear a bikini or shorts on the beach!), the legs are well worth keeping in condition, and that’s something for which your body will likely thank you as it matures. Strength training of the legs encourages stronger bones, more resilient tendons, more durable ligaments, and a better overall level of joint strength. In short, it sets your body up pretty well for the long challenges that life will throw at it. It’s important to remember that it’s not just about *this summer*, it’s about the following 50+ summers too!

2) BOOST YOUR METABOLISM:

Training a cluster of such large muscles as the legs boosts the body’s metabolic operating rate and burns more calories. The legs form a large part of your ‘basal metabolic rate’ (the amount of energy your body consumes just by doing its thing every day). Also, a lot of cardiovascular exercise involves using legs, so by increasing their strength you’re helping to fuel your workouts whilst also burning more calories! Even when you’re resting, your body’s still working out!

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3) RECOVER FASTER:

We’ve established that this is the largest muscle group in the body; since that’s the case, it can be said that training the legs improves overall strength, and potentially greater muscle mass throughout your whole body - not just in the legs.

4) PERFORM BETTER:

Training legs via "compound exercises” (which target multiple muscles at one time) such as squats or lunges, can help you to improve your overall performance across a range of sports, as this type of exercise helps to encourage a well-conditioned body. Training legs can help to hone that sprinter's 'twitch reflex' which enables a faster run, a more explosive jump, and even enhanced agility and balance. These compound exercises form a core part of many elite athlete’s training regimes, as they simply make you stronger and better, naturally!

5) SURPRISE THE BODY:

Finally, it’s essential to keep the body guessing. As a result of training your legs, you’ll add yet another key variation to your exercise regime,. If the body plateaus, you won’t see results; legs are such a diverse muscle group that you can keep surprising the body month after month, year after year! This in turn makes it harder and harder not to see progress in your training towards hitting the beach!

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