With Memorial Day just past us, summer is now unofficially here (though the calendar tells us we still have a few more weeks)! With the warm weather comes shorter hemlines, bare legs, and, of course, the dreaded swimsuits. Many women put a strong emphasis on toning their middle section to make their bodies bikini ready, sometimes ignoring the equally-if not more so-important legs. A toned, flat stomach looks great at the beach, of course, but great legs get noticed every day. Chances are, you won’t be flaunting a midriff-baring top at the office, but it’s quite likely that you’ll choose to wear a dress or skirt on these warmer days.
With that in mind, it only makes sense to focus as much effort on your lower half as you do on your midsection. As an added bonus, working your legs burns more calories than working your abs, so as you tone those gams, you’re actually helping shed the fat hiding that six-pack! On his website AskTheTrainer.com, certified personal trainer Mike Behnken says, “Resistance training for the legs not only builds and tones the leg muscles but is responsible for a greater metabolism increase than any other body part.” Put simply, boosting your metabolism means boosting your ability to burn calories more effectively, helping you to shed fat from all over your body. Even after the warm days of summer have passed us by, the benefits from your leg training will stay with you, since making your legs stronger means also increasing their ability to support your joints, thereby preventing injury and pain.
Resistance training and weight training are both crucial to strengthening your leg muscles. Cardio such as running, walking, biking and kickboxing are all necessary to keep the muscles active and toned as well as burn calories to aid in shedding fat. Pilates and yoga are also excellent ways to strengthen and stretch the all-important leg muscles. Your local gym probably offers a running club, strengthening classes, kickboxing, yoga, and Pilates, so check your gym’s schedule, grab a friend, and try it out! If you don’t belong to a gym, see the list compiled below of a few places offering these beneficial groups or classes. Start today to look and feel better both in the short and long run!
Fitness and Fuel: Fitness-loving married couple Whitney Cole and Byron Paidoussi have combined their individual training philosophies to create Fitness and Fuel. They offer personal training and Pilates to help you focus in on your individual fitness goal. So, if you want to get killer legs for summer, have them create a program that will be effective and tailored to you!
Pilates Plus: Located right in downtown LA, Pilates Plus offers both Pilates and indoor cycling classes to help you tone and lengthen those legs. Their experienced and dedicated instructors will lead you on your journey to long, lean, and healthy legs so that you can rock that bikini and those skirts in no time.
Studio 1-on-1: Emphasizing the importance of individual attention, Studio 1-on-1 in Venice will give you a great and effective experience. In addition to personal training, you could also tone your legs while enjoying a gorgeous California summer day in their small outdoor group classes. The best part? When you're done with your workout, a quick dip in the ocean is only five minutes away.
These are just a few of LA's many fitness locations, so don't give up if you haven't found the right one yet. LA is a Mecca for fitness fiends and you'll find the program that's right for you. After a little hard work, you'll soon be turning heads on the street in that new skirt!