Reduce Thigh Fat This Summer with These 5 Slimming Exercises
Summertime is the best time to start a new workout routine. The weather is beautiful and the days are longer. We also pay a lot more attention to our bodies when we know that we will be sporting a new bikini over the weekend. And now is the perfect time to get started if you want to reduce thigh fat.
Reducing thigh fat isn't just about looking great at the beach, either. It's also excellent for your health. According to the American Heart Association, losing thigh and butt fat will significantly improve your cardiovascular health. Losing weight is one of the healthiest decisions many of us can make.
If you are overweight, losing just five percent of your body weight could also have a massive positive effect on blood pressure, glucose tolerance, diabetes control, and cholesterol.
However, I'm not going to sugar coat this for you. Reducing thigh fat is going to take some hard work. It's not easy There's no magic pill to give you gorgeous lean legs. You're going to have to do this the old fashioned way. Yet if you stick with this plan for six weeks, you will certainly see significant improvements.
Now let's talk more about the best ways to reduce thigh fat.
The 3 Keys to Reduce Thigh Fat
If you are trying to reduce thigh fat this summer, there are three things that you need to do. First, you have to eat healthily and cut calories. Next, you have to do cardio. And finally, you have to do the strength training exercises below.
Doing any of those three things alone will not give you the results you're looking for this summer. If you want to look great in your swimsuit, then you have to do all three.
1. Your thighs are what you eat
The truth is, you can exercise all day and still not reduce thigh fat if you are eating a lot of garbage. If you really want to look great in your new bikini this summer you have to clean up your eating. The key is sticking with high-quality foods and avoiding low-quality foods.
Now I'm not telling you that you have to go on some super restrictive diet. I don't even like to use that word. In the long run, diets rarely work. They leave you feeling hungry and deprived.
But that's not the worst part.
The reason that I tell my clients to stay away from the latest fad diet is that diets slow down your metabolism. It's true. And that's the very last thing you want if you're trying to reduce thigh fat.
All I'm asking you to do is to make better choices about what you put into your body.
High-quality foods that you should be eating include unrefined, minimally processed foods like fruit, vegetables, healthy fats, whole grains, and lean protein. Harvard has made a helpful tool called the Healthy Eating Plate that will show you how much you should be eating of each high-quality food.
Low-quality foods that you should avoid include highly processed junk food, sugar-sweetened drinks, refined sugar, refined white grains, fried foods, and foods high in saturated and trans fats.
The best foods to eat to help you reduce thigh fat
2. Cardio baby!
The next thing that you need to do to reduce thigh fat is cardio.
Okay, first let me drop a little truth bomb here. It's not possible to spot reduce fat. I know, it sucks, but it's true. That means that when you're burning body fat, it will come off from all over your body, it won't just reduce thigh fat. I naturally carry my weight in my legs, but when I lose weight, it seems like my thighs are the last to lose fat. That's just about genetics, unfortunately.
However, I can still keep my legs lean by doing cardio. For me running works. If you're not a runner, you can try walking, biking, rowing, aerobics classes, Crossfit, HIIT, the elliptical machine, or even dancing. Cardiovascular activity is anything that gets your heart rate up for an extended period. No matter what you choose, you're going to have to work hard for the results that you want.
In order to reduce body fat, you should do at least 30 minutes of cardio 5 to 6 times a week.
3. Strengthen and sculpt
The third thing that you need to do to reduce thigh fat is resistance training. There are many benefits to strengthening your muscles, but perhaps the best one is that it helps you to burn fat more efficiently. As we just discussed, you have to do cardio to burn fat. The good news is, the more muscle you have, the better the cardio will be at burning fat.
I have had many female clients who initially were resistant to using weights because they worried that they would get bulky like a bodybuilder.
That's not going to happen. Contrary to what some people believe, resistance training isn't going to make you look like a bodybuilder. Training your legs will make them more toned, and when you do it combination with cardio and eating right, it will help to reduce thigh fat.
The 5 Essential Exercises to Reduce Thigh Fat
To reduce thigh fat, you should do these five exercises before you do your cardio. Try doing all five of the movements two to three times per week.
1. Walking lunges
Walking lunges are one of the best exercises that you can do to shape your legs and butt. They work every muscle in your lower body.
Start by standing up tall with your feet together and then take a giant step forward with your right foot. Bend straight down until your right thigh is parallel to the ground. Then straighten your knees and step forward with your left foot and repeat.
Be sure when you do them that you keep your core engaged and don't bend your knees beyond 90 degrees. You also want to keep your front knee lined up directly above your ankle, don't let your knee go forward of your toes.
You can do this exercise with or without weights.
Do 12 to 15 reps on each leg for one set. You will do a total of three sets.
2. Single-leg deadlifts
The next exercise that you should be doing to reduce thigh fat is single-leg deadlifts. This exercise works your hamstrings, butt, and lower back.
You can do the single-leg deadlifts with or without weights. Start by shifting your weight onto your right leg with your left toe on the ground behind you. Keeping the core engaged, hinge at the hips and bend forward while you let your left leg come off of the floor as a balancing lever behind you. Then slowly stand back up and repeat all of the reps on your right leg before you switch to your left.
Don't lock your knees when you do this exercise; you should keep them slightly bent. Also, be careful not to hunch your back over. You want your back to stay straight and be sure to squeeze your abs in tight to protect your lower back.
This exercise will also improve your balance. If you have any trouble with balance, you can do this exercise near a wall or a chair that you can grab if you need to.
You should do 12 to 15 reps on each leg for one set, and you will do a total of three sets.
3. Plie squat jumps
The next move to reduce thigh fat is the plie squat jump. I love this exercise because it works all of the muscles in your lower body, including your inner thighs.
Start with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed slightly outward. Keep your core engaged as you bend your knees, allowing them to open in the same direction as your toes. Then explode from that position into a jump straight up. Land softly and then repeat.
Make sure that when you bend your knees, they stay above your ankles. You don't want your knees to go forward of your toes.
If you have any knee problems, you can take the jump out of this move and just do the plie.
You can do this exercise with or without weights.
Do 12 to 15 plie jumps for one set. And do three sets in total.
4. Side steps with the mini band
For this exercise, you will need a mini exercise band. The side steps might seem like an easy movement, but when you add the band, oh man, do they work!
This exercise will work your outer thighs and glutes.
Start by placing the band around both legs above the knee. You can make the exercise harder by using a stronger resistance band. Then take a step to your right, stretching the miniband, and step slightly in with your left foot. You want to keep tension on the band so don't bring your legs all the way together.
Take 10 to 15 steps to the right and then repeat on the left side. Do three sets in total.
5. Curtsy lunges with a knee lift
The final exercise that you should be doing this summer to reduce thigh fat is the curtsy lunge. Like the walking lunges, curtsy lunges work your entire lower body, but the curtsy lunges also really hit your inner thighs.
Start by bringing your left foot behind you and to the right. Then bend both knees like you would in a regular lunge. As you straighten your legs bring your left knee up in front of you. You will alternate legs with this one.
You can do this exercise with or without weights. And you should do 12 to 15 reps on each leg for 3 sets.
A Final Thought
To reduce thigh fat this summer, you should do the five exercises above two to three times per week. You just don't want to do the same exercises two days in a row -- and don't do exercises that work out the same muscle groups, either. Your muscles need at least a day of rest in between doing the same exercises.
Cardio, on the other hand, you can do every day.
I have found with my clients who want to shrink their thighs that the best thing you can do is your exercises followed by cardio. Doing the cardio after your strength training will also prevent you from getting too sore.
And speaking of being sore, if you feel pain the day after your workout, there's no need to fret. It's perfectly normal, and it will lessen the more that you do the exercises and the stronger that you get.
However, if you find that you're super sore two days after your workout, then it's a good idea to take another day of rest. Cardio usually helps with soreness, so you may want to take a walk or go for a jog when you're very sore. A foam roller can also help with the soreness.
Now if you're just a little sore, then it's fine to work your legs again. Working them again will likely alleviate some of the soreness.
Now we want to hear from you! Let us know in the comments section below how you like our five essential exercises. And share with our readers if you have any useful tips for newbies to reduce thigh fat.
Have a happy, healthy summer!