Legs Day for Athletic Performance and Strength

It’s that time again — Leg Day! Go hard!

Check out the workout below, or simply print out the .pdf for easy gym reference.

Warm-up: 1×10-15, light Romanian Deadlifts.
Sumo Deadlifts: 5, 4, 3, 3, 3. Go progressively heavier. Stretch the hamstrings well after each set.
Parallel Squats: 3×10.
Split Squats: 3×10 per leg.
3 Supersets: 5 Box Jumps/10 Jump Squats
Lateral Shuttle: 4 sets, 20 feet each direction as fast as you can. Once you’ve done a run to the right and left, that’s one “set.” Stay in a low, athletic stance.
3 Trisets: :45 planks, 20 BOSU crunches, :15 extended side planks, per side

Workout of the Week: Explosive Movement Leg Day

Print out this workout in easy, one-page .pdf format for the gym!

You can sit on a leg extension machine and hyperextend your knees 30-40 times as a leg workout, or you can spend some time doing functional, strength-and-muscle-building exercises that you can actually use in your day-to-day life. If you’re doing this workout, you’ve chosen the second option. Congrats!

A mix of set-rep schemes and weight ranges, plus a focus on explosive movements, are key to this workout. You want to go heavy, but you also want to be keeping the weight moving as quickly as possible. That’ll mean lightening up on a few lifts (but not squats. We know, you’re bummed).

Squats: 5×5. Head up, chest and butt out, shoulders back. Thighs parallel to the ground, drive from the heels. You know the drill by now. Go heavy, and get rested between sets.

4 Supersets: 5 Power Cleans/30 second planks. Squat over a barbell on the floor and take an overhand grip. Keeping your butt down and back flat, explode upward and fully extend at the ankles, knees and elbows, and, in the same movement, lower yourself to “catch” the bar as you pull it high to your shoulders and rotate your elbows forward. Start light if you need to get your form down. On the planks, concentrate on keeping your navel drawn in (imagine you’re trying to touch your spine with your belly button) and — don’t laugh — clench your butt cheeks. Yeah, we said it. This keeps your core activated throughout the exercise.

Dumbbell Split Squat: 4×10 per leg. Use a bench behind you and put your trail foot on it. Keep the same squat principles in mind here — head up, chest out, etc., etc. Hold the dumbbells at your sides, or for a bigger challenge, above your head. Alternately, you can use a kettlebell, holding it elbow-up by your shoulder on the side of your lead leg.

4 Supersets: 6 Box Jumps/15 second side planks. Use the highest box you can land on safely, and start from a two-footed position — don’t take a step first to gain momentum. By jumping back up as soon as you hit the ground when jumping off the box, you can build a great deal of stamina as well as vertical leap power. Let’s see the leg extension machine do that!

Workout of the Week: Full-Body Fat Loss

Follow the workout listed below, or just print out this page for a .pdf you can take with you to the gym!

Full Body Fat Loss Workout

  • Superset 1 (x3): Box jumps (10)/push-ups (20)
  • Superset 2 (x3): Leg press (10)/pull-ups (to failure)
  • Cardio: 5 mins HIIT on a treadmill
  • Superset 3 (x3): Romanian deadlifts (10)/cleans (10)
  • Planks (3 sets x 45 seconds)
  • Hanging leg raises (3×8)
  • Medicine ball twists (3×8 per side): Sit on the ground with your feet flat in front of you and a 5- to-10-pound medicine ball behind your back. Twist to your right, keeping your torso straight up, grab the ball, rotate it quickly in front of your body, and set it down behind you where you picked it up. Repeat that eight times, then switch directions for eight more.
  • Cardio: 5 mins HIIT on a treadmill

WORKOUT WEDNESDAY: Core and HIIT Cardio

CORE AND HIIT CARDIO

hiit, cardio, core, abs

Three Giant Sets:

8 Hanging Leg Raises/12 Decline Sit-Ups/8 Twisting Crunches (to the left, down, to the right is one rep)/30 seconds plank.

3×15: Kneeling Cable Crunches

8 x 20 seconds: Side planks (4 sets per side). Stay rigid as possible, without letting your hips dip.

–Have a BCAA shake, to fight off catabolism, before moving on to cardio.–

Cardio: 15 minutes of HIIT, with a 2:1 ratio of high intensity to low intensity. Do five straight “sets” of 1 minute at full sprint, followed by one minute of a fast run, followed by a moderate-paced jog for a minute.

Save your ink! Print out the workout and take it to the gym with you!