Legs Like Jessie's: Hilgenberg's 7-Move Workout – Bodybuilding.com



in today's workout we are focusing on legs we're focusing on the entire lower body here we're working our quads we're working our hamstrings we're working our glutes the only thing we're not directly training in this workout today is our calves but keep in mind that you work your calves indirectly by doing awesome exercises that we're doing today like jump squats walking lunges and step ups in today's workout we're going to do seven exercises we're starting with squats then we're moving into the lead press barbell hip thrusts walking lunges moving into sumo stance Romanian deadlifts Bulgarian split squats in the Smith machine finishing off with weighted step ups your rest period should be no more than 60 seconds and the entire workout should take you about an hour and 15 minutes including your warmup okay so let's get going with this leg workout one of the biggest setbacks and getting results from your squads is having weak glutes and/or tight hip flexors so I always make sure to do a lot of hip mobility stretches and hip flexor stretches before I start my squats so we're going to get a mat we're going to get on all fours and we're going to do a fire hydrant stretch which also opens the hips up starting with the left side you're going to lift the knee up and you're going to go in a forward circle with your entire leg keeping your hips steady and parallel to the floor then you'll put that knee down and do the exact same thing on the right leg once you're done with that you want to do it all over again but switch the direction of the circle that you're moving your knees on each leg you'll do ten circles in each direction from that exact position we're going to move right into a hip flexor stretch you're going to bring one foot out into a kneeling lunge position and really push the opposite glute forward getting a really good stretch on your hip flexor you'll do that for about 30 seconds on each leg twice now that our hips are open and our hip flexors feel nice and loose and stretched ready to go we're going to move into our warm-up sets of our squats I always start with a bar only I do two sets of 10 reps in between those sets I like to do jump squats the point of doing the jump squats in between is it really gets the blood flowing gets your joints lubricated and gets the nervous system really circulating so that you're ready for the weight of the squats the next two warm-up sets I'm going to add a moderate weight for me it's ten pounds on each side of the bar you do what's right for you I do two more sets of 10 reps now we're ready for the working set we're going to add the correct weight that allows you to get to three sets of 10 reps with perfect form I like to set the bar not right on top of my shoulders but right below my shoulders resting on my upper traps step back get your core activated get your feet perfectly parallel to one another your toes pointed straight ahead and your feet are going to be placed anywhere between hip width and shoulder width distance when you feel steady you're going to pop your butt back arch your lower back and go down into the squat make sure your knees are staying right over your toes and not wobbling right and left knee stability is really important for perfect form in your squats look straight ahead keep your chest lifted and go down just as far as you can in order to activate your glutes and rise back up the same way you came out in my head when I'm doing my own squats when I get to the bottom of the squat I like to keep the weight in my heels so that I really dig those heels into the ground and drive up for my squat with those heels and that will definitely help you keep the tension in the glutes and really build muscle on that area moving into exercise 2 we're going to do 4 sets of 15 reps on the leg press and what's unique about this exercise is we're really going to focus on building our quads on this leg press move instead of the regular glutes or hamstrings that you're used to seeing on the leg press we're going to grab a weight that's a little lighter than usual every machine is different so make sure you test it out do a couple of warm-up sets and make sure you're choosing a weight that isn't too heavy you want to go a little bit lighter on this because you want to focus on form so what you do is you get into the leg press and you bring your heels as low down on the platform as you can your heels are together at the bottom of the platform and your toes are pointed out as you bring the leg press down you're going to make sure that your knees are pointed in the exact direction of your toes so what I'm doing with this exercise is focusing on tempo so as you bring the weight down in your head you're going to do a count to 3 it's one one thousand two one thousand three one thousand when the weight is at the bottom you're gonna give it a two count so one one thousand two one thousand soon as that two seconds is up you push the weight back up nice and slow one one thousand two one thousand three one thousand you rest very quickly without locking your knees and start all over again as you bring the weight down and push it back up the weight is going to be in the balls of your feet not your toes but really in the balls of your feet you're going to bring that weight down and your heels won't even be on the platform whatsoever and that is what's going to turn all of the tension into your quads moving into exercise three we're going to do four sets of 12 to 15 reps of barbell hip thrusts this is one of my favorite exercises and one of my all-time greatest moves for building up those glutes it also works your hamstrings with a foot position that I use I like to do it the way I'm showing you right now in the rack because ladies it shows you that you do not have to have a spotter and you actually can use a heavier weight all you need to do is grab a bench from inside the gym and set the rack to the same height as the bench this setup will allow you to unrack Andry rack the barbell without needing a spotter when doing barbell hip thrusts you want to make sure that the barbell is right across your hips and that you set your feet so that the back of your knees are at a 90 degree angle your heels are a little bit close together and your toes are just slightly pointed out as you lift the weight up you will squeeze your gluts and as you lower the weight you'll have a slight anterior tilt to your hips and then when you bring the barbell back up you'll have a posterior tilt and squeeze your glutes and hold it at the top there for just a second before repeating the rep the next exercise is the walking lunge we're going to do four sets of twenty-four total steps which is 12 steps on each side what you need to focus on while you're doing this exercise is nice slow and controlled reps do not use momentum to be in a hurry as you're doing your walking lunges I like to take every single step and at the top I collect myself I actually sometimes put my foot down and then take another step with the next leg in doing that it allows me to make sure that I'm going straight down and straight up instead of leaning forward and activating all the wrong muscles taking a little bit more of a shallow step during your walking lunges it allows you to use the heel of the front leg to really drive up and that will help you focus on the glute and the hamstring of the front leg the next exercise is a sumo stance Romanian deadlift for this exercise we're going to do four sets of twelve to fifteen reps I like using the sumo stance during my Romanian deadlifts because it allows me to just slightly shift the focus of the muscle being worked by doing a sumo stance you move the focus a little bit to the adductors which is the inner thigh instead of having such focus on the glutes and the back of the hamstrings a tip I like to share for Romanian deadlifts is to start the movement by tilting your hips and really moving that butt backward I like this a lot because most glute and leg workouts focus on the up and down movement and this really focuses on the backward and forward movement which is really really crucial to building up the glutes the next exercise is Bulgarian split squats we're going to do three sets of ten reps when you're getting set up for Bulgarian split squats I like to get my body under the bar and put my heels directly under my hips that sets you up for good form right from the start from there I take the working leg and I take a small step forward about one foot distance once your foot is in that position you're going to take the back leg and place it on the bench behind you as you move down into the squat you want to focus on keeping your knee right above your ankle do not let your knee go beyond your toes so take a peak down at any time during this movement and make sure that your knee is right above your ankle look in the mirror if you can and make sure that your knee again stays really study another's no right and left movement it's really important that that knee working alone is really strong and steady as you move down you want to focus on keeping the weight in your heel keep that way in the heel as you drive back up and that'll make sure that you're working on a hamstring and the glute on that leg our last exercise in today's leg workout is the weighted step-up we're going to do three sets of 15 reps on each leg you want to make sure that you find a bench or a box that's about knee height you don't want the box to be too short otherwise you won't get the depth and the range of motion that you need for this exercise grab a moderate weight that allows you to control your balance as you're stepping up and down off of the box as you step up onto the box drive with your heel make sure all the weight is in that heel and again that will focus on using the glute and the hamstring and the quad of that working leg when you get to the top of the box I like to stop just briefly to collect my balance I do this with this exercise and my lunges it allows you to just make sure that you're using perfect form throughout the entire movement step back very slowly and I do all reps on one leg before I switch to the other one this workout is great if you only have time to Train legs once a week it works all of the major muscles and the lower half of the body the full breakdown of this workout is in the article below right here on bodybuilding.com if you have any questions at all about today's leg workout you can reach out to me on bodyspace or facebook those usernames are Jesse fitness or you can find me on Instagram or Twitter at just hildenburg and for more free articles and videos just like this one keep coming back to bodybuilding.com you

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