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7 Effective Ways to Stengthen Your Leg Muscles

7 Effective Ways to Stengthen Your Leg Muscles

If you suffer from weakness in your legs, you know your limitations all too well. From sunrise to sundown, you feel you can only do so much so fast, and for so long. Even worse, perhaps your chronic leg weakness is leaving you feeling sidelined from activity altogether.

Now, here comes some much-needed good news. You may be just a few short and simple steps away from leading a fuller life with two stronger legs to stand on.

To solve a problem, it often helps to locate the cause behind it. Many of the routine culprits that sit at the top the list for wobbly weak legs are all too obvious — too much physical inactivity and too little exercise, the wear and tear of aging, a hard-partying habit, smoking to any degree, low-quality sleep and dehydration.

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If this sounds like you, it’s within your power to do something about it by following these steps:

Consult a Physician

It’s important to know if you are suffering from another type of underlying health problem of some sort. If going to the doctor isn’t on your to-do list, it is now. Leg weakness could be a sign you are pregnant, fighting an infection, or dealing with another health condition.

In some cases, certain medications could be the cause. Whatever the case may be, you need to locate the reason for feeling the way you do. The devil you know is always better than the one you don’t, so root out that little devil, whatever it may be.

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Walk or Get a Massage

Once you get a green light from your doc, you need to get moving, and that relates to people of all ages. Specifically, if you are suffering from arthritis, you can start off on the road to stronger legs simply by walking more. This is a low-impact and low-budget activity just about everyone can do. Massage also can’t hurt. Well, if you’re stiff it may hurt a little, but the relaxing results are well worth it.

Work It Out

In time, should you feel ready to rev up your engine and ramp it up, there are many more steps you can take to a fitter, stronger you. Each of these activities are an option for people at all fitness levels:

  • Yoga has been around for centuries for a reason. It works. Plus, you need not be an expert of any sort. Just go to a studio where the teacher is patient, welcoming and watchful. Have him or her guide you through basic moves at the start. Don’t come out of the gate at top speed. In yoga, fast means nothing. On the contrary, you need to practice good form. If you rush at the outset, you are missing the point entirely.
  • Leg–strengthening exercises of various types to work different parts of your legs such as ,leg lunges, hamstring contraction exercises or pelvic lifts, and calf raises
  • Bodyweight squats  but as with yoga, watch your form and not your speed
  • Plus, resistance band exercises can also work wonders

Pace Yourself

As with any exercise program, you need to know your limitations, otherwise a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing. If you start an exercise program at full throttle after a long period of doing zilch for exercise, you are filling your own prescription for pain. So use your head. If you have never exercised before, or haven’t in a while, get to a doctor first and ask for some advice about pacing and limits.

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Drink Up

As mentioned before, dehydration can be a common culprit for weakness and pain in many parts of your  body, not just your legs. If you increase your water or juice intake, you may well see a big difference in your energy levels way before you expected it.

In addition to water and juice, you can also fix yourself a glass of carrot juice or fix up one of these natural remedies:

  • Boil one cup of water, remove it from the heat, and add one teaspoon of fresh horsetail. Allow the tea mixture to steep for five minutes. Then, strain it and drink the liquid.
  • Another power-packed concoction that takes just a few minutes to make. Mix two tablespoons of blackstrap molasses into a  glass of warm water. Don’t worry about its    sweetness, either. It is much lower on the glycemic index than many other types of sugar.

Get Your Nutrients

If you suffer from leg weakness, you may also be vitamin deficient. And while you can get your vitamins from a jar, try going right to source: eat food that has contains them. Pack in some potassium, which you can get from bananas, plums, raisins, potatoes with skin and tomatoes. Magnesium can also help aid your muscles. You can get it from brown rice, spinach, lima beans and almonds to start.

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Also, make sure you are getting enough calcium, which works with protein to provide your body with the energy it needs to thrive. It can be found in  milk, cheese and various types of beans for starters. Finally, Vitamin B1 is also a must or muscle pain and weakness may wind up on the menu. You can find it in lentils, peas, and  long-grain rice.

Catch Some Rays

Studies show catching a few minutes of sunshine each day can provide you with much needed Vitamin D, which is instrumental in helping your body absorb magnesium and calcium from your diet.

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Anum Yoon

Writer & Journalist

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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