For most fitness enthusiasts, leg day is notoriously difficult. Not only is this because there are many muscle groups that have better aesthetic appeal, but also because these muscle groups are easy to develop.
However, by skipping leg day, people are doing themselves a great disservice, as the comfort, they gain simply isn’t worth the problems they’re causing themselves. Before you think about skipping another leg day, you have to consider what you’re giving up in exchange for evading leg pain.
The problem with putting a heavy focus on your upper body instead of sticking to a healthy balance is that you’re going to look top-heavy. Poor aesthetics aren’t just isolated in your legs either. Skipping leg day also means that you end up with skinny glutes, something that may significantly hurt your appeal.
Skipping leg day will leave your legs weakened. Not only do your legs need to support the weight from your bulky upper body, but they also have to do so without the much-needed muscle fibers that can help. Weakened legs also mean that you will have poor performance in sports that require a great deal of running. This also robs you of the ability to do adventurous activities, and increases the risk of injury, since you lack a solid foundation for balance.
You Weaken Two of Your Best Lifts
One big reason why it’s important to train your legs is that your leg muscles are an essential muscle group for both deadlifts and squats. Both these workouts are the best compound exercises that can help improve your overall strength.
However, your legs are important, since they serve as your support and foundation for these lifts, and they’re a secondary muscle group that lends power to your exertions during these lifts. Your legs also serve as the primary support for your body. This is also the reason why it’s important that you also ensure that you wear flat shoes when doing squats and deadlifts for maximum stability.
Weak legs will increase the risk of injury (especially as you age) since they won’t be able to support your primary muscle groups as much as they should.
Diminished Muscle Hypertrophy
Legs are among the biggest muscles in the body. By skipping leg days, you are relinquishing the chance to cause your body to release higher levels of testosterone and HGH (human growth hormone) both of which play a vital role in muscle development.
While skipping leg day doesn’t necessarily mean that your muscles completely stop growing, doing so will mean that you give up strides that you would have otherwise made if you worked your leg muscles. Growing your muscles also makes it easier to break through fitness plateaus, as you’ll be able to burn more fat and increase the intensity of your workouts.
Diminished Fat Burning
Much like how you deprive your body of testosterone and human growth hormone, skipping leg days also means that you burn less fat. It’s also important to consider the fact that our leg muscles are constantly under tension whether we’re running, walking, or standing. This means that it’s important to exert tension in order to trigger a fat-burning response.
Working out your legs is not a simple process. Leg muscles are the most stubborn muscle group in the body because of how difficult they are to develop. However, this doesn’t mean that they’re more trouble than they’re worth. Here are some things you need to keep in mind as you work your legs:
The first thing to understand is that like with any other muscle group, working out your legs is going to be most difficult in the beginning. As you continuously develop your legs, the stronger they become, and the more tension they can endure. The rate at which your legs develop increases as they become stronger.
You’ll even eventually be able to perform more complex workouts, shifting from traditional compound exercises, and into isolation exercises. Some of the best leg exercises are much more effective when performed together because the tension they create accumulates.
Range of Motion
Before we can trigger muscle hypertrophy, we first need to ensure that we’re able to subject the muscles to a tension greater than what they are accustomed to. To do this, it’s important to put an emphasis on making sure that we perform our exercises with a full range of motion. Slow, deep squats will also yield greater gains than explosive half-squats. This is also because we need to increase the time under tension that our legs are subjected to.
Leg days aren’t fun, but you’ll learn to appreciate them. There’s a different appeal in performing something that most people tend to avoid. If you’re one of the few who are willing to do their leg days, we hope that the information above helps you a great deal.