What are The Most Effective Inner and Outer Thigh Exercises?

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question-icon-newI really want to tone and tighten up my legs and would like to know how I can target my inner and outer thighs without using the hip adduction and abduction machines. These are the two main exercises I use when I workout my legs and I really don’t know what else to do. Are there any other specific exercises I can use to help me firm up this area?

answer-icon-newYes, there are a bunch of other great exercises you can use to tone and tighten your inner and outer thighs. The adductor and abductor machines are very good at isolating the areas of the thighs but they are actually not the best overall exercises you want to focus on to make significant improvements.

Let’s first discuss fat loss since this is the key component you should grasp if your goal is to really tone up and tighten your legs, hips and thighs. The reason I group all of those areas into one is because fat loss occurs from all over the body and not in just one specific region. There is something called “spot reduction” and it’s a common myth in the fitness world. Trying to spot reduce is basically working one area of your body to an extreme and thinking it will miraculously get super lean and toned. It’s like the guy who does 3,000 crunches every day thinking he will get a shredded 6 pack of ripped abs, yet he is still chubby with a solid layer of fat over his abdominals. Or, it’s the girl who goes into the gym and does 25 sets of the adductor and abductor machines and then leaves without working any other part of her body with the belief that she will get a set of tight and toned legs that would make a Victoria Secret runway model jealous! Spot reduction is an absolute myth and it takes much more than just doing a hundred sets of one exercise to reduce fat and tone up a body part or muscle group.

running-stairs-sprintsThe key to toning and tightening up your inner and outer thighs is by combining several principles to make the biggest changes in your physique. This includes whole body workouts, cardio specific exercises and a fat burning diet to maximize your gains. Body fat is reduced from all over the body and not from one or two spots where you train the most. Fat loss is a holistic effect which means it’s centered around wholes rather than the separation into parts. So, you want to focus your energy on the 3 core areas which include resistance training, cardiovascular exercise and a nutrient dense whole food diet so you can really start making significant changes and keep the results for a lifetime!

I highly recommend using a wide variety of weight training exercises to target your lower body in order to spur fat loss and muscle toning. By including different exercises, you are able to stimulate your muscles from different angles which confuses the muscle which will help you to avoid any issues hitting plateaus which can occur when you do the same exercises and workouts day in and day out. Always mix things up and cross train for the best results!

The best resistance training exercises for your legs, hips and thighs include:

For cardio exercises, focus on jogging, running stairs, jumping rope and sprinting to really work your overall legs and thighs. Have you ever seen how tight and toned female sprinters are? The level of muscle definition is truly remarkable!

Along with choosing the correct weight training and cardio exercises, your diet is absolutely critical for burning unwanted body fat and getting a lean set of legs. Try writing down everything you eat for an entire week using a food journal and then analyze the information to see where you can make changes in your current diet plan to cut out excess calories. Are you drinking 500 additional calories by hitting Starbucks every day for your favorite Frappuccino? How about those little snack breaks at work when you smuggle a few Rice Krispies treats from the office break room over to your desk? A diet journal will quickly help you realize where your calories are coming from and will help you find areas to improve. When it comes to getting lean, your diet is the #1 biggest factor for making noticeable changes in your physique, so always try to place a lot of importance on nutrition and remember to think before you eat!

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