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Weight Lifting for Legs

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Weight Lifting Workout for Legs

A solid weight lifting workout for legs is kind of like marmite – you either love it or hate it. Certainly when you’re new to recreational lifting, it’s often all about the chest and arms and you can’t see why anyone would want to bust their ass with hundreds of pounds on their back in the squat rack just to be unable to walk the next day.

Leg training is important though – there’s no way you’re going to build a powerful physique, strength or size-wise, without it. Also, it’s kind of an acquired taste. There’s something very special about first hitting two, three or four plates a side on your barbell squat, and feeling that pumped vastus medalis bulging after your workout.

Here’s a typical weight lifting workout for legs that will be sure to pack on some size and strength gains. It’s basic, simple, and you should perform it once or twice a week (twice for strength, once for size) and do high reps ( 8-10) for size, and low reps (4-6) for strength, except on calf raises, where you should go no lower than 8 reps regardless.

Barbell squat – three sets
Front Squat – three sets
Stiff-leg or Romanian Deadlifts – three sets
Standing Calf Raises – three sets

The barbell squat is the king of leg exercises and is the primary strength mass builder in this workout. You can expect to pack on a lot of size in the glutes, hams and upper thighs with this one.

The front squat is a more specialised exercise and takes a while to perfect the form. Once you have it though, it’s perfect for more focussed quad work, and really helps to develop that sexy “teardrop” muscle at your inner knee.

Stiff-leg and Romanian deadlifts are probably the best hamstring exercises you can do. I prefer the Romanian deadlift just because it feels more dynamic and natural.

Standing calf raises are essential for good calf growth. I personally don’t believe in 20 sets for calves – it’s fairly well known that calf growth is heavily determined by genetics, and if they’re gonna grow at all, then they’re gonna grow with 3-4 sets, and that’s enough.


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