Have you been walking sideways with a tight elastic band wrapped around your lower legs to trim your thick thighs? Give it up; this won’t shrink your thighs.

I was inspired to write this article after seeing a woman at the gym walking sideways with an elastic band wrapped around her legs below the knees.

I didn’t ask her why she was doing this; it was obvious. She was overweight and most of the excess fat was concentrated from the hips down.

She’d do the elastic band walks in between some stool stepping while holding small dumbbells near the squat cage — where I was stationed doing deadlifts.

Elastic Band Walks Will Make Thighs Burn

There’s no question that at the conclusion of her sideways walks (about 25 feet each way, one set at a time), her thighs, hips and glutes were taxed or feeling a “burn.”

The mistake many make is believing that this uncomfortable burn means the burning away of fat.

This is not true. Elastic band walks are more of a form of paced aerobic exercise than strength training.

Paced movement that’s easy enough to be sustained will not burn enough fat to visibly shrink big thighs.

Compare this to squatting a heavy barbell. This movement cannot be sustained; after eight, 10 or 12 repetitions, you must stop to rest; it’s impossible to go on.

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But elastic band walking can be sustained for a lot longer than a heavy barbell squat set, or deadlift set, for that matter.

Don’t get me wrong: Walking sideways with a rubber band wrapped around your lower legs is no picnic.

But…this will not trim thick thighs. And why won’t elastic band walks trim thick thighs? Well, as mentioned, it’s a paced type of aerobic activity, but let’s get a little deeper here.

In order to budge thigh fat, you must dramatically increase your body’s energy needs.

Walking sideways against the resistance of a rubber band will not dramatically spike the body’s energy needs.

Do not let the uncomfortable burn in the legs, hips and glutes fool you. A more accurate marker of dramatically increasing the body’s energy needs is how out of breath you get at the end of a set.

At the end of your elastic band walk, your muscles are “hurting,” but are you heavily panting? Are you like, “Man, I’m hammered!”?

To crush thigh fat, you must dramatically drive up your body’s energy needs with intense-enough work that thrashes your body—making it raid fat stores for recovery fuel.

How to Send Your Body’s Energy Needs through the Roof

Quit the sideways walking with that crazy rubber band. Instead, learn to do the back squat.

Shutterstock/Jasminko Ibrakovic

Five sets of the back squat, with one minute in between, done with a weight that makes more than 12 reps impossible, but at least eight possible, will shear off the fat in your thighs.

There’s a catch to this protocol: It’s uncomfortable. But hey, you might learn to embrace this new wicked feeling.

Your form in the squat must be textbook. This may take time. Or you may take to it pretty quickly.

Give it a try. Start out with very light weight and first master your form. Your thighs should go to at least parallel to the floor at the bottom of the movement.

If the barbell squat isn’t compatible with your body, you can do squats holding kettlebells at shoulder height.

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Deadlift: King Fat Burner

Learn to deadlift. This is a whole body exercise that hammers your body. A hammered body will burn a lot of fat.

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Once you’ve mastered form and worked on acquainting your body with the deadlift for several weeks, it’s time to up the ante.

Use a weight that’s too heavy to do more than 10 reps but that you can do at least five reps.

Do five sets with 90 seconds, give or take, in between each set.

Progressive Resistance will Trim Thick Thighs

Don’t just go through the motions. Always strive to increase the resistance. If after six months you’re still deadlifting or squatting only 75 pounds, there’s something wrong. This will not shrink those big thighs.

You must lift heavier and heavier to force your body to ransack the fat stores in your thighs.

And if you think squatting and deadlifting heavy barbells will make your big thighs even bigger, then take note of the next woman you see squatting 135 pounds or deadlifting 175.

Look at her thighs. Look at her entire body. Pretty nice, huh!

Ditch the elastic band walking for the squat and deadlift for getting rid of the thunder in your thighs.

Lorra Garrick is a former personal trainer certified through the American Council on Exercise. At Bally Total Fitness she trained women and men of all ages for fat loss, muscle building, fitness and improved health. 

 

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Top image: Shutterstock/B-D-S Piotr Marcinski