It’s a natural instinct to want to tone up your lower body. And it actually makes a lot of sense! Some of the largest muscle groups are below the belt, so a good legs, bums, and tums workout will burn plenty of calories. Plus, who doesn’t want more shapely legs, a tighter butt, and a toned tummy?
This circuit-style workout combines toning resistance exercises and pulse-raising plyometrics to burn calories, tone the lower body, and help you sculpt your body. And the best bit? You don’t need any equipment – so you can do this at the gym, at home, or even in a hotel room!
This rainy-day workout means you don’t even need to leave the house to burn calories, tone up your lower body, and work some of the largest muscles in the body. Grab a mat if you’ve got one, and make sure you’ve got enough room to jump vertically and lunge sideways, forwards, and backwards.
How it works:
- Warm up for 3–5 minutes with marching on the spot, light squats, sidesteps, and lunges. Aim to get your heart rate up and your body a little warm.
- Do Circuit 1 twice, with 30–60 seconds’ rest between.
Take a bonus 2-minute rest.
- Do Circuit 2 twice, with 30–60 seconds’ rest between.
Take a bonus 2-minute rest.
- Do Circuit 1 once.
1. Jump squats: 12–15 reps
Stand in a squat position, squat down, and power up into a jump. Land softly and immediately go into the next squat.
2. Forward-stepping lunges: 24 (12 per leg)
Start in a squat position and lunge forward with one leg until the back knee is near the floor. Push back to the start position and lunge forward with the other leg. Repeat with alternate legs.
3. Sumo squat: 25 reps
Take your feet wider than a regular squat and squat down low, keeping your chest high and back straight. Push up to standing from the bottom position.
4. Burpees: 10 reps
Start in a standing position. Crouch down with your hands on the floor, jump both feet back into a plank position, jump your feet back in towards your hands, then jump up into the air (jump as high as possible). Land softly, get back into the starting position, and go again.
5. Plank: 30, 60, or 90 seconds
Hold a plank position, resting on your toes and either your hands or your forearms. Keep your body as straight as possible from neck to heels and think about drawing your tummy up. Keep breathing!
1. Narrow squat: 12–15 reps + hold
Start with your feet narrow (hip-width apart) and your feet pointing slightly more forwards than a regular squat. Squat down to parallel or lower and come back up again. On your final rep, hold at the bottom for a count of 5 before coming back up.
2. Curtsey lunges: 24 reps (12 per leg)
Start in a squat position and lunge one leg behind you and to the side, so that your legs cross behind you in a “curtsey” motion. Both legs will bend and your back knee will come towards the floor. Return to the start position and lunge with the other leg. Repeat with alternate legs.
3. Mountain climbers: 30 reps (15 per leg)
Start in a press-up position, resting on your toes and hands, with your hands under your shoulders. Look down and slightly ahead to keep your neck straight. Drive one knee towards your hands, return the foot, then drive the other knee in. If you can, go faster in a running-type motion.
4. Glute bridges: 10–15 reps
Lie on your back with your feet flat and close to your butt. Lift your butt up and curl through your spine until you’re resting on your upper back and feet. Hold at the top and squeeze your butt before releasing and rolling down through your spine. To make this harder, lift one foot as you squeeze at the top of the move.
5. Leg-raise sit-ups: 12–15 reps
Lying on your back, lift your feet off the ground. Either have your legs bent at the knees, so that your legs form a right angle, or have your legs straight and your feet in the air. Crunch your upper body towards your thighs, using your stomach muscles to pull you up. Don’t speed through these – 10 slow reps with good technique is better than 15 rushed ones.
Which muscles does this LBT workout target?
Legs: Including quadriceps (thighs), hamstrings (back of your thighs), and calves, plus your hips, adductors, and abductors
Butt: Including gluteus maximus and gluteus medius
Stomach: Including transverse abdominis (deep core muscles), obliques, and rectus abdominis (the six-pack muscles)
It’s worth noting that this dynamic bodyweight workout will also work your back, shoulders, arms – and, of course, your heart!
How does this LBT workout burn calories?
This bodyweight circuit burns calories by using the large muscles of your legs, butt, and hips. The dynamic movements like squat jumps and burpees will get your heart rate up, and the circuit-style nature of the movements means that your body won’t get a chance to settle into anything before you move on.
Other training that targets legs & butt
If you want to combine this workout with something else to tone and target your legs and butt, but don’t want to go to the gym, why not try cycling, uphill walking, or running sprints? They’ll all target the same muscles and burn fat to help you tone and shape up!
Have fun with these circuits!