Your overall well-being depends on factors such as having adequate nutrition through a balanced diet, getting enough exercise on a regular basis to not get habituated to a sedentary lifestyle, and letting your mind and body recover through sleep. These things also contribute to working towards any fitness goals that you might have.
First things first, it is not possible to get rid of fat from any specific body part. Spot reduction is a myth, and when your body loses fat, it does so all over. It is also important to keep in mind that losing fat is not inherently associated with being fit. In fact, your body needs a certain amount of healthy body fat to properly function—your body fat acts as a protective cushion for your vital organs, is involved in regulating your hormones, functions as an energy reserve, and also plays a role in regulating your body’s temperature. Moreover, the presence and distribution of body fat depends in part on genetics, as shown in a review published in the journal Endocrine Reviews. According to a study published in Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition & Metabolic Care, women generally have a higher body fat percentage than men, and tend to have it stored in the hip and thigh region. However, exercising your legs can promote bone and joint health, improve stability, and support your core, so if you are looking to tone up your legs, here are some things that can help you with how to lose thigh fat and build stronger legs in a more sustainable manner.
Some Ways To Tone Your Thighs
- Incorporate cardio exercises into your routine
One of the fastest ways to lose fat is to get some cardio exercises in your daily life. Activities that get your heart rate up can burn calories and help you tone up. Cardio exercises can be easily incorporated into your daily routine. Running, jogging, jumping rope, cycling—these are all great examples of convenient cardio exercises. For adults aged 18 to 64 years, WHO recommends at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity such as brisk walking or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous exercise to avoid the complications of a sedentary lifestyle.
- Include more fibre and protein in your diet
Protein is helpful when it comes to building and maintaining muscle mass. Moreover, research has shown that foods high in protein are very filling—a 2008 article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says that generally, in comparison with carbs or fat, protein increases satiety more. Similarly, dietary fibre can also keep you full longer, as it can increase the time taken to complete the digestion process by adding bulk to your food. According to an article published in Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, dietary fibres may contribute to energy balance. Foods such as eggs, fish, soya and other beans, broccoli and avocado can provide protein and fibre in your diet. A balanced diet is key to your overall health and fitness.
- Think about strength training
Strength training, as the name suggests, is all about building up your strength and endurance. It involves working against some sort of resistance, whether it is your body weight, resistance bands, weights, or machines. According to a clinical trial published in International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, resistance training can show significant increase in lean mass, and a combination of resistance training and proper diet can maximize reduction of fat mass. It is important to work all the muscle groups in your body, but some exercises that focus on your legs include squats, squat variations such as jump squats, lunges, and side (or lateral) lunges. Use free weights or resistance bands for added resistance.
- Switch it up with HIIT
Along with regular cardio workout, consider mixing things up with HIIT. High-Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT, involves short periods of intense exercises, followed by recovery periods of low-intensity activities, in an alternate manner. Most HIIT sessions last for up to 30 minutes. An easy example of a HIIT style workout would be combining fast running and slow jogging or walking. Warm up sufficiently, then run at a fast pace for about 30 seconds, followed by lightly jogging for about a minute or so. Do five to ten rounds of this, and remember to cool down at the end. HIIT is an efficient form of working out if you are looking to burn calories and wondering how to lose thigh fat. Always remember not to overdo it. Start out slow if you are a beginner, and follow routines that suit your health and fitness levels.
- Try to reduce stress and get enough rest
Recovery is equally as important as working out to facilitate fitness, as it helps repair and rebuild your muscles. Overworking yourself is counterproductive and detrimental to your fitness goals in the long run, so make sure to get adequate rest. Stress can be the root cause of many health issues that affect your fitness. Attempt to manage your stress levels by identifying the sources and practising activities such as meditation, breathwork, and journaling. Sleep is also very important for the recovery of your muscles (as well as your overall physical and mental health) and restoring your energy, so try to get about eight hours of sleep every night.
Take the guidance of qualified professionals before making any significant changes in your lifestyle and fitness routine.