6 Exercises For Leaner Legs: How To Slim Down without Gaining Size (plus workout video).

by Belinda on September 16, 2015

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Imagine if there was a simple solution to leaner legs, one that could naturally reduce cellulite and excess fat. If you’ve ever wondered why you can’t get tighter thighs, you’re in the right place today. I’m going to share the secrets I discovered in my 40’s that enabled me to transform from fat and frumpy to super lean.

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I wish I had a before photo of my legs to show you…but the truth is, I hated looking at myself in the mirror. I avoided the camera at all cost. I didn’t own a bathing suit let alone a bikini. But what I discovered led me into fitness modeling and now at 51 years of age, I’m helping thousands of women around the world transform their bodies too.

You may be thinking, “I’ve tried everything to get leaner legs” and you’re not alone. Here are just a few of the types of messages I receive everyday..

Hi Bel, I run 4 times a week and do 2 spin classes but my legs still have cellulite and are spongy. My butt is starting to sag. My weight is OK, can you help? Amanda

I’ve always had big thighs and when I worked out at the gym they got even bigger!! I’m afraid that if I do lunges and squats I will gain more size, which is the last thing I want. Jane

Hey Belinda, no matter what I do I can’t get rid of the fat and soft spots on my legs. I workout 5 days a week and tried everything… Susan

I don’t want to build any muscle size at all – I’m happy with the shape and size of my legs, I just need toning and more definition – my legs build muscle very easily so conscious not to overload them. Amy

Maybe this sounds like you? If so I’ve got good news. Today I’m sharing the solution that’s helped these women and thousands of others just like them – so you too can have the lean thighs you’ve always dreamed of. Please make sure you read this post to the end because I don’t want you to miss out on exactly what to do.

If you’re like many women who come to me for help, you’re always second-guessing yourself, wondering if you’re doing the right exercises and workouts for your body type and goals. This is a challenge we all face. There is a ton of misinformation out there and yes it’s very confusing.

But the solution is simple. We just need to do the right female specific workouts using the correct training techniques.

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There are two types of workouts you should be doing:

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• Lower Body High Intensity Interval Training (Fat-Burning plus Muscle-Toning).
• Female Specific Leg Toning Exercises (Free Workout Sample Below)

By doing these types of workouts with the right training techniques, you’ll:

  • get leaner legs
  • won’t gain size
  • balance your lower and upper body symmetry.

To understand why this works here’s a little of the science behind why this works.

What are the elements of a lean physique?

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First, we need to take a step back and look at the big picture of our female body fat distribution, female body symmetry and muscle strength versus muscle size.

1. Female body fat distribution.

As women, we tend to carry more fat in our lower body, hips, butt and thighs. Often our shoulders are narrower than our hips and the ratio of our limb length in relation to our height means our legs look thicker and shorter. So it’s not surprising they often feel disproportionately big.

2. Female body symmetry.

Yes good nutrition is vital but if you’re like many women, you’ve probably experienced the frustration of losing weight, only to see your upper body get smaller and your lower body stay the same or heaven forbid, look bigger in comparison. Very frustrating. No matter what you do, you can’t lose that layer of fat on your legs or achieve the definition you dream of.

I get emails and messages about this every day. That’s why I’ve written this blog.

Listen carefully.

3. Muscle strength versus muscle size.

Strong, firm muscles are the secret to toning your legs from the inside out. They will shape your thighs, smooth the surface of your skin to get rid of cellulite and create beautiful definition.

BUT there is a massive difference between creating hard, dense, strong, lean muscles and building big, bulky ones.

Lean, tight thighs are created through improving muscle strength and tone (muscle fiber density) – not through building muscle size (muscle cell volume).

Think about it. Muscle size and muscle strength are not the same thing. I’ve arm-wrestled more than one man with double or triple the muscle size of me – and won! Have you seen how big my arms are lol?

So put aside your preconceived workout notions and fears about getting “bigger legs” from exercising and please keep an open mind.

Why what you’ve been doing isn’t working & what you need to do.

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There are two very different ways muscle can be conditioned:

1. Myofibrillar hypertrophy: creates more muscle fibers increasing muscle hardness and strength (we want).

2. Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy: creates more fluid within the muscle cells increasing muscle size (we don’t want).

Focus on creating stronger, harder, firmer muscles that will tighten and define your legs without gaining size. We call this building muscle density.

There is a very specific way to train for muscle density.

Here’s what works and doesn’t work for women.

What Doesn’t Work

  • Running or steady state cardio (same-slow-pace): utilizes the slow twitch muscle fibers. These take twice as much effort to build the same amount of muscle density as exercises that recruit the fast twitch muscle fibers. In other words, you can run and run but still have cellulite, sponginess and sagging.
  • Gym Machines: limits range of motion, doesn’t challenge body balance and not biomechanically ideal for creating muscle symmetry.
  • Old School Weight Training: builds muscle size and places strain on joints, ligaments and tendons.

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What Does Work

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~ The Training Techniques ~

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1. Exercises that:

  • use the full range of motion
  • challenge our balance (stabilizing muscles)
  • include static muscle contraction (isometrics)
  • are done at the right speed
  • performed in the correct sequence.

2. Mind-to-Muscle Connection

Research shows we only use 20-30% of our total muscle strength when trying our hardest. We need to:

  • consciously recruit and activate the target muscles in our quads, inner and outer thigh, hamstrings and butt to create firmer muscles with no gain in size whatsoever
  • not zone out during our favorite workout DVD or mindlessly go through our routine or gym class
  • consciously feel our muscles stretch and flex in all the right places as we go through the moves. 

3. Training Effort:

  • optimize our effort expended during the allocated workout time 
  • reduce rest time between exercises
  • shorter, more intense routines.

~ The Workouts ~

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I recommend two types of specialized workouts:

  • Lower Body High Intensity Interval Training
  • Female Specific Leg Toning Exercises

Here’s a sample of leg toning exercises you can do at home without any equipment.

Female Specific Leg Toning Exercises: Sample Workout

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Combining the correct training techniques with the right workouts gets results. We:

• reduce our body fat.
• build stronger, harder muscles to firm, tone and define our thighs.
• increase our resting rate metabolism making it easier to maintain our weight.

If you’ve struggled to get leaner legs and tried everything, I’ve already done the work for you by developing a proven solution I’ve used and have also used with my clients successfully to achieve the body they desire and deserve.

We are all unique, with our own body type and challenges.  Whether your skinny fat wanting to tone up, or fit but with cellulite, or wanting to lose 10-15kgs – these workouts will work for you! 

Remember, it’s not only about losing weight but about changing your body composition – even small changes can make a big difference to our appearance and how we feel about ourselves no matter what our weight, size or body shape. 

Robyn:

“Bel’s workouts target muscles in a way I have not previously experienced. The moves are simple to follow and perform while being amazingly effective. Working out is no longer a chore but something to look forward to. I can’t believe what a difference her workouts have made…”

Maybe right now you’re thinking “is this the solution I’ve been searching for”?

Here’s something you must know.

My Get Lean Program is for women who are ready for real change.

If you want leaner legs and a firmer body, if you want to be sure you’re doing the right exercises for your body type and goals and if you want to lose weight without feeling hungry or deprived…then Get Lean is specifically for you.  

Even if you’re fit and in great shape what you’ll learn will definitely take your physique to next level just through my bodyweight workouts alone.

If you’re new and just starting out and want to kick  start your progress the right way then this is equally important for you because I’ll give you a proven blueprint that I’ve been using with tens of thousands of clients over the last 4 years.

If you like the sound of this then today you can join my coaching community of like-minded women and start receiving my personalized support putting together a workout and eating plan for your body type and goals

No matter what your age or where you’re starting from you can get leaner, firmer more defined legs – and a sexy body to boot!

Click the link below to gain immediate access, download my Get Lean Program and start your transformation today.

Click Here To Start Your Transformation Today <<<

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I’d love to work with you!

Bel xo

Subscribe below for more blogs like this.

References

  • Boutcher, S.H. (2011). High-intensity intermittent exercise and fat loss. J Obes, 868305. doi: 10.1155/2011/868305
  • Bottaro M et al. Effects of rest duration between sets of resistance training on acute hormonal responses in trained women. Jour Sci Med Sports, Dec 2007.
  • Gettman, LR, Pollock, ML, Circuit weight training: A critical review of its physiological benefits. Physician & Sports Medicine, 9:44-60, 1981
  • Gironda, Vince, Kennedy, Robert, Unleashing The Wild Physique, 1984, Sterling Publishing
  • Gotshalk, Lincoln, et al., Cardiovascular responses to a high-volume continuous circuit resistance training protocol, Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2004, 18(4), 760-764
  • Staley, Charles, Muscle Logic, 2005, Rodale
  • Wathen, D. Periodization: Concepts and Applications. In Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning. T.R. Baechle, ed. Champaign. IL: Human Kinetics, 1994. pp. 429-472.
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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Crystal October 23, 2016 at 5:37 pm

Do you ship your products to Canada?
I’ve always been thin and moderately fit but have had cellulite on my legs since I was young.
I’m 38, have two children and a physically demanding career. Which program do you recommend?

Reply

Belinda October 23, 2016 at 5:44 pm

Hi Crystal! My programs are global with everything being downloaded online with support via my coaching forum website. If your eating is on track and you’d like a workout to focus on your lower body and cellulite then try my Bye Bye Cellulite Program But if you’d like help with your eating as well I’d recommend my Get Lean Program because it is has my personalized support via my coaching forum so you can be sure your plan is exactly targeted to getting results you need. It includes a 90 Day Eating Plan so you can relax and lose weight without worrying if you’re eating the right foods and it has a wide range of female specific at-home workout routines for all levels so you can tone up your specific trouble spots and cellulite. Let me know what you think – I’d love to coach you! Bel

Reply

Kiran October 15, 2016 at 11:46 am

Hi there I’ve just been looking into your plan today. I exercise a HIT routine 5-6 times a week at home and also go to a trainer once a week during school term time. I don’t feel like there is any change in my thighs etc now – I’m just wondering whether to sign up to your plan but I’m also not a great cook so don’t want to feel pressured into having to cook complicated meals. Can you offer any advice before I sign up? Thanks. But I have to say what you’ve done is amazing!

Reply

Belinda October 15, 2016 at 1:55 pm

Hi Kiran! Great to meet you and good questions. I understand re the cooking. You have the option of following the food types and portions sizes and keeping it simple or using my recipes. You can see an example day here. I feel like the program will work for you. If you want to check if it’s a good fit please send me a message via my Help Desk, I’d love to coach you! Bel XO

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Ali September 24, 2016 at 5:44 pm

Hi, I’m 46 and have just watched one of your videos which refers to the times we should eat carbs and female specific exercises.
Can you tell me more? I’m keen to move my spare tire :-)
I am going to the gym and want to do the best I can for me.

Reply

Belinda September 24, 2016 at 5:56 pm

Hi Ali! Please start with reading this article: http://belindabennsblog.com/how-to-be-a-fat-burner-not-a-carb-craver-12-commonsense-eating-exercise-tips/ and test out the tips. If you’d like to know more message me via my Help Desk :) Bel XO

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Abby August 15, 2016 at 2:33 pm

Does your program offer upper body workouts like for the arms or does doing the body weight exercises includes the upper body in the movements?

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Belinda August 15, 2016 at 2:39 pm

Hi Abby, the Get Lean Program includes both options. Upper body specific bodyweight toning workouts and also full body fat burning workouts. I also have core/abs and specialized routines for things like hip mobility and stretching. I hope this helps! If you’d like to know more please send me a message via my Help Desk :) Bel XO

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Vicky March 20, 2016 at 4:37 pm

I’ve bee reading more into your plans, I’m unsure if the cellulite plan or get lean is best? Can you help please

I’m 35, two young children but can make time 3 times a week in a evening to excercise. I started running but have found this tough on my knees, looking into guidance with a specialist to train my supporting muscles. However my biggest worry is cellulite, I’ve always had it from about age 15, I’ve always been trim but never fat. I had a breakdown due to children’s ill health and stressed work etc, now I’m 12 stone at 5 foot 8 inches – this is the biggest I’ve ever been. I want to get back to being slim but toned. I can’t show my legs it makes me feel sick with cellulite, it’s now on my belly and arms ?

Please advise what plan to proceed with, THANKYOU

Ps I’m vegetarian so will any plans support me here too?

Kind regards

Reply

Belinda April 22, 2016 at 5:42 pm

Hi Vicky,

If your eating is on track and you’d like a workout to focus on your lower body and cellulite then try my Bye Bye Cellulite Program:

http://belindabennstore.com/products-page/beauty-and-anti-aging/bye-bye-cellulite/

But if you’d like help with your eating as well I’d recommend my Get Lean Program because it is has my personalized support via my coaching forum so you can be sure your plan is exactly targeted to getting results you need.

It includes a 90 Day Eating Plan so you can relax and lose weight without worrying if you’re eating the right foods and it has a wide range of female specific at-home workout routines for all levels so you can tone up your specific trouble spots and cellulite.

I have a Get Lean Vegetarian Guide that I will include with your purchase (just let me know via my Help Desk).

Take a read through this article which explains more:

http://belindabennsblog.com/transforming-the-female-body-things-to-avoid-how-to-enjoy-and-what-to-do/

Let me know what you think – I’d love to coach you!

Bel

Reply

Linda Skipper October 6, 2015 at 6:46 pm

I’d like to receive your blogs. Thank you.

Reply

Belinda October 6, 2015 at 6:51 pm

Hi Linda, nice to meet you. Thank you! Please register your name and email in the “Stay in the Loop” box on the top right of this blog. Check your Inbox for the confirmation email and click the link inside.

Bel xo

Reply

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