This is a reverse-pyramid program to let you take more sets to muscle failure. We’ll be hitting four muscle groups — quads, calves, hamstrings, and glutes — in this mass-building workout. Ready to build and toughen up those chicken legs?
1. Barbell Squat
(4 sets of 6-10 reps, lighten the load after the first 2 sets).
Make a hip-width stance with your toes facing slightly outward. Support the barbell on the top of your trap muscles, chest up, and head facing forward.
Bend your knees slowly, while driving them outward and keeping your back straightened. Hinge your hips and your knees will move forward. Make sure the bar moves in a straight line up and down.
Slowly keep the weight on your heels and push up to go back to your initial position.
2. Leg Press
(4 sets of 8-10 reps)
Set the weight then sit on the machine placing your feet (shoulder width) on the footplate in front of you. Make sure to press your back firmly against the backrest.
To start, lower the footplate’s safety bar and press all the way up so that your legs are fully extended creating a 90-degree with your torso and legs. Remember to keep the knees bent slightly when extended to avoid injuries or accidents.
Slowly lower the footplate as you inhale to make a 90-degree angle with your upper and lower legs. Place the weight on your heels and push the plate back to your starting position.
3. Dumbbell Walking Lunge
(3 sets of 10-14 steps each side)
Begin with a hip-width stance holding a dumbbell in each hand.
Put one leg forward, bending your knees to lower your hips. Dip until your back knee nearly meets the floor. Keep an upright posture, and avoid moving your front knee past your toes to avoid injury.
Put your weight on your front foot’s heel and ascend from the lunge. Switch sides and repeat.
4. Leg Extensions
(3 sets, 8-12 reps)
Set the load, sit on the machine keeping your legs hooked under the foot pads, and put your hands on the sidebars.
Make sure that your upper and lower legs form a perfect 90-degree to avoid undue stress on your knees. Always keep your knees aligned with your toes.
As you exhale, extend your legs fully using your quads. Keep your back flat on the padded seat during the movement. Pause and squeeze for a moment and then slowly retreat to your original position.
Repeat until you finish the set.
5. Romanian Deadlift
(3 sets, 8-12 reps)
Assume a shoulder-width stance while holding a bar with your palms facing down at a hip level. Arch your back, keep your shoulders back, and your knees bent slightly.
Move your buttocks back as far as you can as you lower the bar. Maintain the bar’s distance to your body while keeping your shoulders back, chest out and your head looking forward.
Lower the bar down to about knee level, then drive the hips forward, and return to your initial position.
6. Lying Leg Curls
(3 sets 8-12 reps)
Lie face down on the machine and place your feet under the foot pad — a few inches below the calves. Grab the machine’s handle, keep your torso flat, and stretch your legs fully.
Keeping your upper legs on the pad, curl your legs as far as you can while you exhale. Pause for a second after fully curling your legs. Go back to the original position as you inhale.
7. Standing Calf Raises
(4 set, 14-20 reps)
Set the calf raise machine to your height. Stand on the machine with your toes facing forward and your shoulders rested under the machine’s pads. Plant the balls of your feet firmly on the step with your heels extending over the edge.
As you exhale, raise your heels as high as you can, feeling your calves flex. Pause for a second and lower your heels to return to your initial position.