Quad-Focused Leg Day (gentle, metabolically supportive workout)
Quad-Focused Leg Day
Exercise #1: Bulgarian Split Squats (6-12 reps, 3-4 rounds)
For this exercise, you will need a bench or a chair. Being by standing straight up, shoulders back, chest lifted, and core engaged ~2 feet in front of the chair. Place one foot on the chair. You can either place your shoelaces on the chair or flex the ankle so that you are balancing on the ball of your foot. Shift your weight to the standing leg and make sure that the weight is evenly dispersed throughout the foot. Squat down on an inhale and exhale to push back up to stand
Exercise #2: Plie Calf Raises into Squat Jumps (4-8 reps, 3-4 rounds)
This exercise can be done with a light weight if desired; however, it is very effective without. Begin by standing with your feet wide, toes facing outward. With your shoulder rolled back, core engaged, and chest lifted, squat down. In a squatted position, lift the heels off the ground 3 times. After 3 heel raises, perform 3 squat jumps in the same plie stance position. 3 heel raises + 3 squat jumps is 1 repetition, so you will only have 4-8 reps for this exercise
Exercise #3: Single Leg Glute Bridge (6-12 reps, 3-4 rounds)
Lay on your back with your feet flat on the floor. Your feet should be hip width apart and should be ~12 inches. away from the glutes. Engage your core to get the lower part of your back onto the floor. There should be no arch in the lower back. Lift one leg so that it is straight up in the air at hip height. Make sure to flex the foot. Engage the glutes and push your hips up by driving through the heel of the foot planted on the ground. Stop when your shoulders, knees, and hips form a straight line. Hold at the top for a few seconds and then lower back to the floor. Repeat all reps on one side before switching to the next
Exercise #4: Alternating Step-ups (6-12 reps, 3-4 rounds)
Like the plie calf raises into squat jumps, this exercise can be done with a weight or just with body weight. You will need a chair, bench, or a box for this exercise.
Start by putting one foot on the object and step up by driving through your heel. Try to keep a tall posture and your knee aligned with your ankle rather than letting it collapse inward. For an added challenge, drive your knee up so that it is at the same height as your hip. Step back down and repeat on the opposite side.
Exercise #5: Kneeling Leg Extensions (6-12 reps, 3-4 rounds)
Start by sitting on your knees with your arms at your sides and your feet behind you. The bend in your knees should be ~90-degrees. Engage your core and slowly lean back. Be sure to maintain a straight line from your knees to your head. The only thing that should be bent is the knees. Go as far as you can with a tight core and come back to an upright position by squeezing the quads. For an additional challenge, hold a dumbbell out in front of you while performing the exercise.