Leg Workout: For Functional Fitness Fanatics
I love lifting weights, but I am far from the stereotypical weight lifter. I still feel 100% at home in the gym. No matter where we go, no matter what gym, no matter how busy my day, or how bad my mood is, the gym is my happy place. It’s my space to do me and I love that. I am full of slow twitch muscles, I love cardio, in fact, the longer the endurance session, the better, and I hate neon colors. I am an endurance junkie through and through and would usually trade a long bike ride for a back and bicep workout. This is now the reason that I lift – to build my weaknesses. I used to have zero upper body strength. I felt incompetent, I could not do a pull-up, and that was not the kind of woman I wanted to be. It took a couple of years of lifting weights three times a week, still running 9 miles on those same days and not really seeing any progress before I was fed up and started to really put in the work.
Now I do my own thing in the gym, six days a week. I get tired of “meat head” workouts. Not because I think them point less – quite the opposite- adding in the basic “meat head” moves is what has helped me to put on muscle for the first time in my life. But I like a more endurance based workout that also translates into fitness on the trail - I almost always keep things moving, and keep my heart rate up.
Add on top of this, I train my husband, who is even less of a bodybuilder. He is an adventure sport athlete and much more drawn to a long easy trad multi-pitch route than powerful sport climbing. When he goes on trail runs, he likes to bring a backpack full of snacks and stops all the time to enjoy the views, look at leaves or bugs, or whatever. So, when he comes to the gym, I have to keep things creative, interesting, and most importantly functional. Everything we do must be translatable to a skill we would need outdoors.
So when leg day comes around for us, it’s an opportunity to build power, physical strength, and mental strength that will carry us into our next adventure. I know I can’t be the only one who loves both endurance and strength sports. So here’s something for those of you like us, and those of you who maybe just want to mix it up in the gym.
FUNCTIONAL LEG WORKOUT
(4x12 each move)
Clean & Press
Lunges (10 each leg)
Banded kickbacks (4x15)