If your thighs are a problem area and you would like to slim them by 10 pounds, stop focusing so much on them. Instead, take on an approach that's geared toward reducing fat from your entire body. Accept that spot-reducing fat from just one area isn't possible, and know that by reducing fat from your entire body, eventually those jiggly thighs will also slim down. Give your diet a makeover and start an effective exercise routine so you get optimal results.
Plan on reducing your weight by 1 to 2 pounds per week, which according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is a safe weight-loss rate. Since there are 3,500 calories in 1 pound of fat, you must create a deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories every day to achieve this.
Consume a reduced-calorie, well-balanced diet that contributes to your daily caloric deficit. Establish a diet that's low in sugar, salt, cholesterol and trans and saturated fats, and that emphasizes veggies, fruits, whole grains, low-fat or fat-free dairy and lean protein. Swap out high-calorie foods, such as ice cream and sugary sodas, for low-calorie alternatives, such as fruit and water. Also, reduce your portion sizes so you consume fewer calories.
Perform leg-intense, cardiovascular exercise at a moderate pace for at least 30 minutes on five days of the week. Leg-intense cardio burns calories that contribute to your daily caloric deficit, and mainly targets the muscles in your lower body, such as your hamstrings, quadriceps, calves and glutes. Ride a bike, go running or exercise on the elliptical machine or stair climber. Maintain an intensity that allows you to talk, but not sing.
Incorporate full-body, strength-training exercises into at least two days of the week. Strength training stimulates muscle tissue and increases your metabolism by 15 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Work all major muscles groups in your body, and use weights that are heavy enough so you can't do another repetition after finishing a set of eight to 12 reps. Slowly work your way up to performing two to three sets of each exercise.
Perform exercises that target your thighs as part of your strength-training routine. Squats, lunges, stepups and dead lifts can effectively tone and strengthen your thigh muscles as long as they're done with proper form. Start the exercises with just your body weight or just the barbell bar to develop proper form. Monitor yourself in a mirror. As you get stronger, slowly increase the challenge by adding weight.
Consider hiring a personal trainer to master proper exercise form.
Consult a doctor before starting a new diet or workout routine, particularly if you've been inactive or have an injury or medical condition.
- Truestar Health: Spot Reduction - Myth or Truth?
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Aim for a Healthy Weight
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: How Much Physical Activity Do Adults Need?
- Personal Trainer Today: Cardio and the Lower Body
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Why Strength Training?
- Ask the Trainer: Best Leg Exercises