TRAINING YOUR LOWER BODY
“A popular mistake that many individuals are making when they go to the gym, males in particular, is forgetting to work their lower bodies. Most guys (and some women) are only interested in trying to make their upper body look good and if they are doing cardio work as well they feel like they really don’t need to do any additional leg exercises on top of that. They’re legs are already being worked. WRONG!
This is one of the biggest mistakes you could possibly make because first of all, your legs provide the base upon which the rest of your exercises are going to be supported off of and secondly, the legs contain the largest muscles in the body.
One thing to keep in mind though is that if you are doing a fair amount of cardio work already, you might want to cut this back just slightly in order to make more room for the leg work in your workouts. You still want to be able to recover optimally and if you are doing leg workouts twice per week plus 5 sessions of cardio, this is likely going to be too much. A good leg workout will more than replace your cardio session however so you can easily reduce the frequency of cardio without seeing any negative effects.
For the women out there who are scared to perform leg weights because they feel it will make them ‘bulky’, don’t be. You don’t have the testosterone in your body to develop any significant amount of muscle mass unless you are very genetically blessed or are taking some form of drugs (steroids). Additionally, an intense leg workout will burn just as many calories as a moderate paced cardio workout will, so in terms of weight loss, you are just as well off. In all reality, you are likely better off because the weight training will help to increase your metabolism more after you have finished the leg workout as well so you will burn more calories all day long.
So next time you are in the gym, don’t avoid the squat rack. Give it a try for a month. I’m willing to bet that once you see the positive effects it has on you, you won’t be neglecting these workouts again.” - by Shannon Clark