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  1. #1
    PapaG44's Avatar
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    I am looking to build muscle without making my legs huge because they are already pretty big. Most of what I read says squats and deadlifts should be the basis for my workouts. I would really like to lean out my legs but not necessarily make them bigger while I add overall mass. Any suggestions?


  2. #2
    TenYearStorm's Avatar
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    What? Seems like an oxymoron.

    Just loose weight overall (can't spot reduce) and do your lifts and sprint.


  3. #3
    Kay's Avatar
    Kay
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    I am in the same boat as you, always wanted lean legs. But I found that squats and lunges did not make them bigger or maybe it did but nothing significant. They did make them look leaner and much shapelier than before. It makes me wonder why i never did squats before o_O


  4. #4
    PapaG44's Avatar
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    @tenyearstorm: I am not talking about spot reducing. I am talking about a muscle building routine where I add muscle to most of my body without making my thighs huge, just nice and toned.


  5. #5
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    There is no such thing as a workout to "tone".

    "Toning" is done by lowering overall bodyfat.


    It's not clear by your username if your male of female... assuming female.


    In that case, it is unlikely that you'll grow huge muscles by accident so I'd say do squats and deads and work on cleaning up the nutrition to lower bodyfat. Hill sprints would make a nice addition as well.


  6. #6
    The Big L's Avatar
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    arthurb999, I took PapaG44's post to mean that he has naturally large, muscular legs, and that he isn't interested in making them any larger. He only wants to take some of the fat off (tone them) and add some strength, while simultaneously adding muscle mass to other non-leg parts of his body.


    PapaG44, am I close to the mark here?


    If I'm right, it sounds like you need to focus on muscle-building exercises for your upper-body, and strength-building for your lower body. I'm not an expert in these areas, but hopefully an expert should be able to help you figure out what exercises will achieve this goal. My assumption is that intense squats and deadlifts are going to build muscle size in your legs, so you might need to focus on other exercises.


  7. #7
    arthurb999's Avatar
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    What guy wouldn't want bigger legs


    ... unless you're a weight class restricted athlete.


    But if BigL is correct, he's right. If you go lower reps (under 6) you won't build as much mass as you would doing an 8-12 rep scheme and would still build strength.


  8. #8
    PapaG44's Avatar
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    @arthurb: so papa makes you think female huh? I do believe in a thing called 'tone' because I have done high rep workouts before where my muscles did not grow noticeably in size but became more defined while my bf remained the same.


  9. #9
    Lekki Wood's Avatar
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    Papa - I understand what you mean, completely. My body shape has changed dramatically on PB, not just the size, but the distribution. I am sure you know that you cannot 'spot' reduce - hence your question. But you can 'spot' build. You want to avoid too much of this on the legs, while doing enough to keep them toned, right?


    My advice is to keep lifting (very) heavy things, but if something is specifically designed to work your legs (e.g. squats) keep to a low weight with more reps. In this way you will build the Type 1 muscle fibre (as you do with sprinting) but not any of the others. This will minimise growth. Keep going heavier and heavier elsewhere and you should be able to spot build up the rest of your body. Keep to PB eating and you should also reduce your fat, so you'll look toned and lean.


    FYI - if you are female you are extremely unlikely to ever build huge (or even large) muscles anywhere without hormone supplementation. So, you don't need to worry too much, you *probably* don't have enough testosterone.


    HTH


    Lxxx


  10. #10
    arthurb999's Avatar
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    High rep work targets muscle endurance and temporarly make the muscles harder due to increased blood flow... which may make them look "better" that day.


    Lowering your bodyfat is the only way to get more defined...


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