There are two main reasons you would want to tone and define your leg muscles to get ready for summer. The first, of course, is so you can look great strutting around in your swimsuit all season. The other is so you will have no problems trudging through the sand on all those long walks on the beach. Try these exercises to help define your leg muscles.
Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart. Holding your arms out in front of you and keeping your posture straight, bend at the knees until you are in an almost sitting position. Hold that pose for five seconds and then use your legs to straighten back up. Repeat ten times, three repetitions in total.
Leaning your back against a wall, place your feet about two feet in front of you at about shoulder width apart. With your arms either out in front of you or straight down on the wall for extra support, bend at the knees until you are as close to a sitting position as you can get. Hold for five seconds and then use your legs to straighten back up to a standing position. Repeat the action ten times, three repetitions in total.
Lie flat on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Keeping your knees bent, raise your legs into the air as if you were sitting in a chair. Keeping your thighs as still as possible, criss-cross your calves back and forth. Continue this motion for 30 to 45 seconds at a time, repeating the exercise five times.
Horizontal Leg Lifts
Lie on the floor on one side with one leg stacked on the other and your hand at your hip. Keep your legs straight and lift the top leg slowly as high as you can without straining. If you feel pain, stop. Repeat this motion 20 times on each side, and then repeat the whole process three times.
Standing Leg Lifts
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Place your hands on your hips and bend forward at the waist at about 45 degrees. Keeping one foot firmly planted on the floor; lift the other leg back as far as you can raise it without straining, keeping both legs straight. Repeat 20 times per leg, and then repeat the process twice.
Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands on your hips, step out with one foot about two feet in front of you. Bend both legs and almost touch the back knee to the ground, then straighten back up and return to a standing position. Repeat this process, alternating which leg you step out with until you have done 20 lunges on each side.
Walk It Out
If you are looking for a very easy and effective leg-defining workout, simply look to your daily routine. Start walking everywhere that you are able; go for walks on your lunch break, and always opt to take the stairs. Walking is low impact and is a great leg as well as cardiovascular workout.
Dance It Off
Dancing works out the whole body, especially the legs. Start frequenting salsa night, or take some classes during the week to get the most out of this fun exercise.
The key to any great leg-defining workout is consistency. Do these exercises a few times a week, and don’t skip repetitions if you can avoid it. Also, notice that most of these exercises rely on the resistance of your own body instead of machines or equipment, so doing these exercises slowly will help you get the most out of each and every motion.