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Working out your legs is one of the most critical exercises you can do. It will make all other activities that you do easier.
There’s a running joke in the weightlifting community that no one actually works out their legs - you skip “leg day.” For men especially, leg muscles are the least glamorous muscles. Having a nice chest, shoulders, and ab area is much more visible. While it is a bit of a running joke, some people take it a bit too seriously and avoid working out their legs.
Leg workouts are some of the hardest workouts that you will do. Your leg muscles are the biggest muscles in your body. Over a third of your body weight is made up of your legs. Skipping leg workouts completely, or not doing an intense workout means that you are ignoring a large part of your body.
Because your leg muscles are so big, it generally means that your leg workouts are your most intense - you will feel them the most. You can get a really good workout in your legs once a week, and feel it for a few days afterwards. It will take your leg muscles longer to recover than some of your smaller upper body muscles.
There are several other reasons that you should work your leg muscles out beyond the fact that they’re the largest in your body. If you participate in any other activities where you use your legs, then getting a focused leg workout will help you in those other activities. If you do sports, run, walk, hike, or otherwise, then increasing the strength in your legs will lead to increased performance in those other activities. While it may not be recommended to max out your lifts if you’re in the middle of your sport season, you should absolutely do so during your sport offseason.
Having strong and trained legs will allow you to more easily try new activities that you may not have done before. Skiing and snowboarding, or wakeboarding are all things you could try if you never have before. You can certainly try these without training your legs as well, but you’ll likely feel it very quickly in your legs.
Training your legs will also lead to a nicer look in your legs and your butt. For many people, it’s an important aspect of why they workout, and there’s no question that it will help to make those areas of your body look nicer.
Assuming you have kids, you’ll find it much easier to move around with your kids - you’ll be able to get up and down, and run around the yard more easily with your kids. Getting down to their level to play will become less of an issue as you build your leg strength and flexibility through your leg workouts.
As an added side benefit to working out your legs, you should begin to find that your back has less pain in it. Instead of bending your back to pick something off of the floor, you can squat down and pick it up (like your young kids do). Bending over with your back is a great way to get a back injury. By learning proper form in your leg exercises, you’ll begin to realize the benefits of squatting down instead of bending over.
Learn to not be afraid of leg days. Instead, embrace it. Your body will be grateful for you taking care of it, and you’ll see many added benefits throughout your daily life.