Who wants some sexy legs?

Ladies, as the weather starts to warm up and we head into Spring and then Summer; it’s time to start baring our legs again in shorts, capris and soon bathing suits!!!

Gasp!

We all want a great pair of legs and a nice booty, right? Of course! But the reality is that not everyone is willing to put in the work and the time to build them up. What’s that about? Well, for one, I don’t especially love training legs. They are hard work. They are the body’s strongest and most powerful muscles. They include your quads, your glutes (bootay!) and hamstrings…or everything the areas just below your waist line (another popular area to improve next!) but honestly, it takes some hard work to train them and then just try walking around when you’re sore from a new leg workout.

The struggle is super real. In fact, here is my recent selfie shot following a rigorous training day. 😉

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So just know that I get it. I know it sucks and I know we still want what we want, right? The truth is that strengthening those muscles in our lower bodies will not only get more attention in those jeans and warm weather attire, but it also helps to quicken those smaller waist lines and just better overall health at the same time.

Really?

Yes!! It’s like two birds!

Not to get too studious with you but there was  some research done and it was found that people who had the strongest legs also had the lowest amount of visceral fat…wait, what’s that, you say? It’s just the most dangerous kine of fat that wraps around your organs (ewwww) and increases your risks for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some types of cancer. Do you even need another reason now to get those legs moving? Well, it can boost your brains functions and this is true even as you get older.

Winning!

So let’s get started on the basics and how to get some sculpted legs started today. Yes, today! Just stop putting it off for goodness sake! Here are some tips to get started and you’ll notice improvements in no time. (well, technically NO time means not any time so that isn’t correct but now I’m babbling)

Start with the basics: 

We all have heard that squats and deadlifts are the muscle building moves for our legs, right? But they are also truly difficult to master at first if you aren’t sure what proper form looks like. If your form is wrong, you may risk straining your joints and your back.

That’s just not worth it to start. So, if you are a true beginner, start with some less advanced moves that hit the same muscles, such as ball squats and lunges, step-ups and bodyweight squats. Once you become a pro with these moves, you can move on to weighted squats and deadlifts. Make sure to always keep your form tight (abs in, straight spine, chest lifted) and keep your reps within the 12-15 range. That’s the best rep range to improve the way your legs look. Start with a workout like this to ease into lower body training without strain:

 

Don’t Isolate Muscle Groups
What I mean here is to stop sitting and using those leg machines if you’re at the gym. Seriously, just stop. Unless you are focusing on injury rehab, you’re going to get a better workout doing the multi-joint (or compound) moves such as lunges and step-ups, because they target more than one muscle group at a time. The more muscle you work, the more muscle you’ll be building.

 

Finish Strong

Your legs are used to carrying you around all day, so you may have to work harder to tire them out than you do the muscles of your upper body. Try 12 walking lunges per leg, followed immediately by 30 seconds of squat jumps [lower yourself into a full squat, then jump as high as you can].

Other alternatives: Bodyweight squats paired with jumping lunges, step-ups paired with sprints outdoors or on a treadmill with a steep incline. Three sets of any one of those combinations, resting minimally between moves, will have your legs screaming!!!

Who’s ready to train some legs??

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Body Beast; Week 8

New day; new month and new week!

My journey to the Classics in July continues and today marks week 8. The workouts are seriously challenging and although I had not used the Body Beast supplements in their entirety when I completed the program a few years ago, they are calling my name this time around. It’s funny how I always “think” I know better but when the program is a proven plan; actually scientifically so, maybe I should drop me ego at the door and just trust. 

Today is Monday and all weight lifters and gym-goers know that means it must be CHEST day! Yes, on any given Monday, if you were to visit the gym, the bench press benches are always in use. You actually have to wait in line to get your turn under the bar. So why would Sagi change this plan? Yes, even on Body Beast; Monday means CHEST DAY.

Breakfast means that I am sticking to my “usual” of cooked oatmeal with some peanut butter and almond milk; plus egg whites and veggies with salsa. Coffee on the side. This seems to be my staple for month 2’s breakfasts. I’m a creature of habit so I know that I will keep this going until I’m completely SICK of it and then look into a new option. I’ve done breakfast pancakes before; among different omelet choices, but for now, this is making me happy and that is what it takes when kicking my body to the curb in these workouts.

My “after workout” fuel is my Shakeology and in this phase, that means upping the protein by adding in a scoop of the Body Beast Beast Shake. Lunch is usually 2 or 3 hours later and consists of whatever lean protein I have on hand; chicken, tuna, egg whites, etc and veggies. I have an apple to curb my sweet tooth and sprinkle cinnamon on top. I used to scoop out some peanut butter but for all of you recovering addicts, you know that I need to minimize how many times I actually open that peanut butter jar. Who knew it was so habit forming?

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I have to say that I am loving the way this program is going so far. I see noticeable changes in my abs, arms and focusing on working my booty as much as possible with some extra cardio workouts 3 days per week. Today I’ll use the stair climber machine at the gym for 40 minutes at a steady pace. My joints need some tender loving care so I will not do any of the jumping style workouts that I’m used to in my circuit style cardio sweat sessions for a bit. This momma needs to be in the best shape (or at least walk upright across that stage) at the competition.

 

and so it begins….again!

DAY 1!!

Today starts my journey to my next fitness challenge.  WBFF stage!

I’m super scared and super determined to train harder than ever before.  My recent issues with hormone shifts and body not responding as quickly as before has thrown my focus into a spiraling mess.

I’m done with all of that and moving right along.  I find that I do best when I give myself a “finish line” and push to meet my goals.  What did that consist of today?  Let me tell you;

I began my day with my eating plan and it was a good day to do so.  Protein Pancakes for me!! Super happy girl for sure! (and I’m already dreading the no carb days later down the road and trying to stay focused on the here and now)

The meals were actually pretty AWESOME….and then I went to the gym.

I’m never one for doing a half-assed workout but OMG!! This was just insane.  Legs circuit training from HELL! I ended up on the floor; gasping for air during the final 3 sets of the workout.  1 1/2 hours in and I was finally done.

Dripping sweat.

Barely dragging my wringed out body out of the gym.

Good news: one of the trainers wished me well on my way out the door and said, “You train INTENSE!!!”

Made me smile.

I did have to stop and get some groceries to finish the day’s meals off right.  Then I figured I would get in a cardio session in the cycle class tonight.  Wasn’t as good as other ones but it got the job done.

I’m done.

For today, anyway!

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