I was having a conversation with someone the other day and we got on to the topic of strength training – when the words I have heard so many females say, was uttered once again “I don’t like them (exercises) they make my legs bulk up!” If I had a dollar for every time I heard that…
So again I found myself explaining that women should not be bulking up if they are doing the right exercises for their bodies – and particular posture. Before going any further I want to say that I offer my clients a money back guarantee if their worried about their legs bulking up! And to this day I have never had to refund anyone.
If you find your legs are bulking up – most of the time it is quads (the front of your legs) that are the main culprits. Your quads are prone (in most people) to overwork – which leaves them shorten and tight. We mustn’t forget that faulty abdominal training may also be contributing – if you anchor your feet during situps; this allows your hip flexors (not abdominals) to do the work. Now you have short tight quads and short tight hip flexors that pull you pelvis anteriorly (forward). When this occurs your quads progressively become tighter and continue to do the more and more work (without the glutes and hamstrings to balance them out) – and this is when you start to feel that they begin to bulk up.
So how do we avoid this?
There are several steps we must take to avoid this problem continuing and skipping leg exercises is not one of them. The best place to start is to stretch the tight muscles – your quads and hip flexors. Then we can strengthen your glutes, hamstrings and abdominals properly. Exercise selection is super important and technique is critical – poor technique = poor results.
Repetitions, Sets, Tempo, Rest and TUT (time under tension) of your exercises are also important – for some reason everyone always just does 3 sets of 10 reps? But I will have to explain all that another day.
Side note: Females don’t have enough testosterone to bulk up; if you don’t believe me ask any female bodybuilder how hard it is for them to gain muscle.
So girls if you feel your legs bulk up – look at your posture and exercise selection if your unsure seek advice… I am putting the finishing touches to my Best Leg and Butt exercises and it should be on the site next week – so look out for that.