Get your legs ready for shorts weather

June 13, 2013

Summer’s here, and that means it’s time to break out your shorts and show off your legs. There’s no reason to dread the season of bare legs if you have the tools to tone your glutes and thighs. Keep these tips in mind as you ease into your summer workout routine, and you’ll be ready for shorts season in no time.

1. Adjust your incline
As you’re running on your home treadmill, increase the incline to work your hamstrings, calves, quads and glutes as you simultaneously do your cardio workout. Not only does running on an incline get your heart rate up and help you burn more calories, but it also will get your legs in shape. Try running on a decline to work other areas of your legs.

2. Squat kicks
To complete this exercise, begin in a squat position. Stand up, then kick your left leg out to the side so its height is equal to that of your hip. Return to a squatting position, then repeat on the right side. Do a total of 15 squat kicks on each side.

3. Rear circles
Get on all fours in a table-like position with your hands slightly in front of your shoulders and your knees underneath your hips. Lift your left knee to the side so it’s at hip level, and move your leg clockwise in 12 tiny circles. Repeat this motion using your right leg.

4. Plie heel raises
Stand with your feet wide apart (second position, for all of those ballerinas out there), and knees and toes turned out. Slowly lower into a plie squat, being careful to keep your knees above your ankles. Extend your arms to the side for balance, engage your abdominal muscles and lift your heels off of the floor for one second as you complete the squat. Stand up, and repeat 10 times.