While many people want long and skinny legs, some of you may wish to get big and muscular legs. If you’re naturally thin with a fast metabolism, gaining your ideal weight can be as much a struggle as maintaining weight. But even if it looks tough, you can still make bigger legs through exercise and a healthy diet. So if you want to gain weight on your legs, follow these tips to encourage your muscle growth.
How to Gain Weight in Your Legs.
#1 Create Your Calorie Surplus.
If you want to gain weight, you should try to create a little excess calories. Then your body will use the extra calories to increase your body mass. The number of calories needed will vary depending on several things such as age, gender, and body composition. If you are naturally thin, you may need a higher calorie burn.
To gain weight, a safe calorie addition of about 500 to 1000 calories per day to gain about 1 kg of weight gain a week. For starters, try to add 250-500 calories per day to gain half a kg per week. If you don’t see results, gradually add calories up to 1000 calories and see the changes at the end of the week.
#2 Get Healthy Calories.
You need lots of calories when you start building muscle. But this doesn’t mean you are free to eat anything. Make sure the calories you consume come from healthy foods such as lean meats, whole grains, nuts, vegetables, and fruits. Also, limit processed foods, sugar, fast food, and alcohol if you are trying to gain weight.
#3 Eat Lots of Protein.
Make sure you are getting enough protein when gaining weight for new muscle growth. Lean meat, chicken breast, salmon, eggs, nuts are some of the best sources of protein. So make sure you get enough protein every time you eat.
#4 Add Supplements.
Supplements that contain whey protein, creatine, and caffeine can help increase the effectiveness of your workouts and maintain a long-term workout plan. But don’t rely on it because supplements should be taken together with a healthy diet. Besides, they’re not closely monitored for safety and efficacy by the FDA, so it’s best to consult your doctor before taking any supplements.
#5 Train Your Skinny Legs.
Without exercise, your muscles won’t grow. So, you need strength training to increase muscle growth in your legs because the diet isn’t enough. Strength training 3 times a week as below allows you to stimulate more muscle fibers by working the leg muscles from various angles. To gain weight, choose 2 or 3 leg exercises, complete in 2-3 sets of 4-8 reps each. If you want to get a progressive plan and get that extra boost, consult your fitness trainer.
This is a great workout for skinny thighs. Bodyweight squats are good enough to lift your thighs. However, adding a barbell will make your workout more effective. Use 5 to 10 kg of weights for starters. To build big leg muscles, add weight periodically.
When you want to build strength and gain muscle, it’s important to add weight. This exercise engages the glutes, quadriceps, and back muscles to give you a full-leg workout.
Besides a box, you can use a bench or a sturdy platform at home when you jump on it. For beginners, start at a lower height to reduce shin pain. As your jumps and strength progress, increase the height of the boxes for a continuous challenge.
This exercise involves slightly bending the knees, thereby increasing the work on your glutes and hamstrings. That means you’re on the right track to get sculpted legs. Use a pair of dumbbells or barbells, then keep your back straight by bending your knees slightly when you start.
Use Exercise Machines.
Leg training machines are generally available in gyms. So if you are serious about building muscle, you will definitely go there. Some exercise machines such as leg extensions or standing leg curls allow you to build muscle gradually and increase the intensity of your workout.
If gaining muscle is your goal, try reducing cardio exercises like running or swimming. As we know, this exercise is useful for reducing fat over time. So if you are a skinny person and want to gain weight, cardio training can be against you. But you can still do small amounts of cardio to tone your muscles and get the definition you want.
Gain weight and build muscle on your legs isn’t just about exercise and a healthy diet. Your lifestyle also affects the effectiveness of your hard work. Not pushing yourself too hard, getting enough sleep, avoiding stress, reducing alcohol, and not smoking can also contribute positively to achieving your goals.