The key to losing weight is a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise, no matter what body part you want to target. Moreover, it's important to know that you can't really target only one area for weight loss, and you'll likely lose weight throughout your body when you try to shed weight in your legs.
Embark on a cardio-intense fitness plan. Cardio exercise burns more calories than targeted leg exercises and can help you shed the fat that's covering up lean muscle tissue. For even more benefits, try exercises that work your lower body, such as running, jumping rope, bicycling or swimming. For the most benefits, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends 300 minutes of cardio per week, or an hour of exercise every week day.
Focus on creating healthy muscle tissue in your legs by doing targeted exercises. These routines burn only a minimal number of calories, but developing more muscle tissue can boost your metabolism. Try exercises such as calf raises, squats, lunges and calf presses. The more intense the exercise, the more muscle you'll build, but start slow and gradually build up to more reps. With many body weight exercises, you can hold weights to make the routine even more challenging.
Cut calories from your diet. Although it's possible to lose weight without dieting, eliminating excess calories can make the process go much faster, because you'll need to shed 3,500 calories through diet, exercise or a combination of the two for each pound you want to lose. Replace sugary, high-calorie beverages with water, and consider switching from potato chips and cookies to berries, nuts or fruit smoothies. Even cutting 100 calories a day from your diet can make a difference, so start slow and steadily build to a healthier diet.
- American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Back to Basics for Healthy Weight Loss
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: How Much Physical Activity Do You Need?
- American Council on Exercise: Why Do Some People Have a More Difficult Time Losing Weight Than Others?
- ExRx.net: Thigh
- ExRx.net: Calves