We are pumped to share one of our favorite stories from Self here on FitSugar!
Angelina Jolie, Jessica Biel, Cameron Diaz . . . Who hasn't watched their favorite movie stars walk the red carpet and grown a little envious of their mile-long legs? Granted, most leading ladies are blessed with superior DNA, but that doesn't mean you can't score long, lean gams too! "What is possible for others is possible for you," says Barry's Bootcamp cofounder Barry Jay, the celebrity trainer behind Eliza Dushku's, Stacy Keibler's, and Juliette Lewis's fit physiques. "But be patient! If you want legs that look like Jessica Biel's, do the work!"
That means ditching the late-night pizza runs and sticking to a healthy diet. Also remember to maintain proper form during those calorie-torching sweat sessions or all of your hard work will be for naught. "Form is everything," says Jay. "Don't just do it. Do it right!"
To get started, incorporate these three moves using a set of five- to eight-pound hand weights (or set a timer for one minute per exercise if hand weights are unavailable) into your regular routine twice a week. "Good legs are important because they help your whole body change," says Jay. "You burn the most calories when you work out your legs. They are the foundation of your body, a gift, and they deserve to look their best!"
Read on for the workout.
Stand with your feet parallel, a little wider than your hips. Make sure your knees don't go past your toes when you squat down. Look straight ahead not down. Keep your back straight and your abs tight. Breathe! Put the body weight in your heels. You should still be able to wiggle your toes. Push your heels into the floor as you come up and do a good old-fashioned butt squeeze at the top for extra firmness. Your chest shouldn't be lower than your buttocks. Lower the butt; raise the butt. The first thing that moves is your butt and keep your chest up.
Lunge long and low, not letting the front toes go beyond the front knee. Your back knee bends toward the floor. Again, don't lean or arch. Keep a good straight spine. The lower body carries the upper body. Use your core for balance and breathe! Do a minute of squats and a minute of lunges. Do four minutes of each. You can alternate the legs for lunges, starting in standing position with your feet aligned with your hips.
Use light weights at first and increase as you grow stronger. Stand with your feet aligned with your hips. A slight bend in the knees helps take strain off of your back if needed, but straight legs are OK and give the hamstrings a good stretch. Slowly bend at the waist, arms straight with one dumbbell in each hand. Keep your back straight with no arch. Go down as much as you can without arching your back. Slowly come up, pulling your abs in, and squeeze your butt at the top. Engage your hamstrings on the way up. First you engage your hamstrings, then you do the motion. Do four sets of 10 to 15 reps.