Achieving a set of toned legs requires commitment to a structured exercise regimen and a healthy diet plan. Although there are no quick-fix schemes, you can slim down and tone up legs in as little as 30 days if you're disciplined. Include cardiovascular and strength-training routines in your monthly workout plan to get your best pair of gams yet.
Cardiovascular exercise will burn off calories for weight loss. Although it is impossible to spot-reduce fat loss, overall weight loss will target excess fat on the legs. The legs tend to store excess fat on the thighs, particularly the inner and outer thighs, leading to the dreaded thunder thighs. The NHS recommends engaging in more than 150 minutes of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity, exercise per week for weight loss. Aim to do three to five weekly sessions of cardio such as running, biking or swimming for 30 to 60 minutes each.
Strength-training exercises for the legs will increase lower-body strength and muscle mass. Muscle has a higher metabolic rate than fat, which means you'll burn more fat even while at rest to show off toned legs. Tone legs with two to three strength-training sessions per week that target the major leg muscle groups including the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and hips. Exercises should include squats, lunges, calf raises and leg lifts.
Tone your legs in a month by adding Pilates workouts to your usual exercise routine. The HuffPost cites Joseph Pilates, the founder of the conditioning program, as once saying that you can feel a difference in your body in as little as 10 Pilates sessions and you can have a new body by 30 sessions. Pilates leg exercises lengthen and strengthen the muscles to assist in achieving a long, lean lower body. Start by doing two to three Pilates sessions per week for 15 to 20 minutes to conquer the correct technique and form.
Although a structured exercise program will help tone your legs, you will have little to show off if you don't adhere to a healthy diet plan. Eating too many calories will lead to weight gain or prevent you from losing weight that's covering leg muscles. The NHS suggests the average woman takes in approximately 2,000 calories per day. To lose a pound of fat per week, you will need to cut 3,500 calories from your weekly diet, or 500 calories per day. Aim to eat 1,500 calories per day by focusing on vegetables, fruits, lean proteins and healthy fats.
Jennifer Andrews specializes in writing about health, wellness and nutrition. Andrews has a Master of Science in physical therapy from the University of Alberta as well as a bachelor's degree in kinesiology. She teaches yoga and pilates and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.