Bodyweight Exercises for muscular legs
Imagine you were stranded on a beach. Think Tom Hanks in Castaway. You have no access to squat racks or free weights.
Would you lose all the muscle you worked so hard for?
Most guys would do some pushups to maintain the upper body but how about the legs?
I’m going to assume since you’re reading this that you aren’t lost on some deserted island.
But maybe you want to learn how to train your lower body without equipment.
That’s what this post is all about.
How to build muscular legs without weights
Squats, lunges, step-ups should make up the foundation of your lower body training. Some people complain that you have to do a lot of reps for calisthenics to be effective and that’s partially true.
But that doesn’t mean you have to train your lower body with high-reps every time you train. There are many options. You just need a little creativity. Which I find to be exciting and fun.
Other ways to stimulate muscle growth in the legs with bodyweight training include:
-changing the rep speed (tempo)
-combining exercises in a circuit
Some of the greatest athletes of all time swear by hill sprints. Walter Payton, Hershel Walker, Jerry Rice etc..
Why should you perform hill sprints, even if you’re not a high-level athlete?
They force you to recruit a ton of muscle as you work to overcome the incline of a hill. Sprinting taps into your fast-twitch muscle fibers which are great for power, speed and muscle.
Generally hill sprints are safer than regular sprints because the incline keeps you from overextending your hamstrings which may lead to a pull or tear.
Always be sure to warm up thoroughly and stay within your limits when starting out with sprinting.
Jumps are overlooked but effective at building muscle and power in the legs.
The best options are:
One word of caution- if you haven’t jumped in awhile, take it easy. Just do a few.
If you have any knee, ankle or back issues, be cautious and don’t overdo it.
Basically- just be smart about it.
A little goes a long way with plyometrics. You don’t need to do a ton of reps.
If you can find a good set of stairs, you have a perfect setup for a great leg and conditioning workout.
Just like hill sprints, you need to EASE into stair running. Get in a good warm-up and start slow.
Your level of fitness will determine how long your workout should be/ how many sprints/ the rest periods.
For a beginner, 5-10 minutes will be plenty.
Intermediate 10-15 minutes.
If you want to keep your legs strong and muscular, hiking is a great option.
There’s a ton of other benefits to hiking so I recommend everyone do it even just once or twice a month.
Climbing up and down varied terrain is tremendous for your entire lower body and also your midsection.
Balance, coordination, joint-stability and the HUGE benefits of fresh air and sunshine.
Muscular legs are the goal, but you gotta work on some of the boring stuff too.
Need a break from the weights?
Check out the 6 week bodyweight challenge- LEVEL UP 45
-3 bodyweight workouts per week with all reps/sets and exercises outlined so you know just what to do and have no doubts if you are doing the program correctly for maximum progress
-2 interval training sessions per week to maximize fat loss with quick high-intensity sessions that you can do at home or the gym
-nutrition guide to keep you on track with what to eat/how much/how to structure a diet plan that works for YOUR lifestyle