Many women hate their upper legs so much that they don't even try to firm them. Mistake. "Many of your major thigh muscles — your hamstrings and quadriceps as well as your butt — are actually easy to tone," says Evelyn Nunlee, a New York City personal trainer for 15 years.
“Inner thighs are trickier”, she concedes; to target that trouble spot, add crunches and other lower-abdominal exercises, because your stomach muscles are close to those of your inner thighs.
For quickest results, do the four-part thigh routine as well as some form of aerobic exercise three times a week. "Walking, swimming, and biking will give your upper legs definition," she says. "And in-line skating is particularly good. Women who skate have great thighs."
Lean head, shoulders, lower back, and butt against a wall, with feet about 18 inches in front.
Keeping knees hip-width apart, slide down the wall until you are in a chair like position. Your legs should not go any lower than a right angle to the floor. Hold position for 30 seconds; work up to five minutes.
Muscles it works: Quadriceps, butt and hamstrings
Stand sideways at the bottom of a staircase.
In a scissor like motion, cross your outer leg to reach the step. Click arrow to see the next step. Pull your other foot off the floor and place on the second step. Walk sideways up the flight of stairs; return to bottom normally. Then scissor your way up facing the opposite direction, leading with other leg. Start with one flight for each leg; work up to five.
Muscles it works: Entire leg
Stand with hands on hips, legs hip-width apart.
Take a big step forward with your left leg until your left thigh is parallel to floor. Do not allow your knee to extend in front of your toes. Let your back leg bend and heel come off the floor. Do not lean forward. Push off the left leg, and step back into starting position. Repeat with right leg. Start with eight repetitions on each leg; work up to 20.
Muscles it works: Hamstrings, butt
Sit in a chair, leaning slightly forward, arms at sides, feet flat on the floor.
Place a medium-size ball between your legs above your knees, with just enough pressure to hold the ball in place. Squeeze the ball with your inner-thigh muscles. Then release just enough to hold the ball in place. Start with 10 squeezes; work up to 30.
Muscles it works: Inner thighs
This four-part exercise program won’t take you long time to do, but it will be very efficient. Try it out!
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