Leg day shouldn’t leave you feeling like a vegetarian on Thanksgiving: all appetizers, no main course. Instead of mashing together a random assortment of leg exercises, try this full leg workout from trainer Jay T. Maryniak. The only turkey legs will be yours.
You’ll “hit some hamstrings to start things off, then [focus] on the quads and glutes,” the trainer explains in an Instagram caption describing the routine. “It’s really solid workout that can be done in under an hour.”
Even if you're rushing to finish, make sure to follow Maryniak's guidance and get the full rest periods between each set. Your goal should be quality reps, not getting out of the gym.
Ready to get that gravy? You’ll start with 3 sets of 10 reps of the barbell sumo good mornings. At the start of each rep, aggressively grip the bar to keep it off your neck and brace your core before pushing your butt back to hinge at your hips. This will help keep your lats activated, back flat, and spine in healthy position (always a good thing). Double check your form using this guide.
Now that your hamstrings are pumped, it’s time to bring your quads and glutes into the equation with 4 sets of 6 reps of barbell box squats. Maryniak sits to a platform that allows him to sit parallel— mobility permitting, you should aim for the same. Just as importantly, aim to maintain vertical shin throughout each rep.
Your goal during this move isn’t simply to “tap” your butt on the box, but to fully sit your ass down. Notice how slowly Maryniak takes his descent. Do the same. Land on the box with control, without rocking backwards, pause for a count, then power through the floor to stand back up. Double check your form with our guide.
Next up, Maryniak completes a tricky little circuit of heel elevated, narrow squats. Rather than loading the movement with a backed rack barbell, we'd recommend either holding a dumbbell at your chest and doing goblet squats, or using only your bodyweight. Either way, lower into the squat as far as you can go without rounding your back. The narrow stance requires much more ankle, hip, and knee flexion than regular-stance squats, so imperfect mobility in any of those three joints can cause the lumbar spine to compensate. Meaning, your chest rounds forward and undo pressure is put on your lower back. Don't do that.
Finish up the workout with 5 minutes of non-stop walking lunges. Toss on a weighted vest if you’ve got one—Maryniak is wearing a 50-pounder.
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