Frank Mikulka's Weekly Fitness Tip
Lower Body Makeover (September 27, 2005)

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Coming out of the beach season, I wasnít exactly pleased about the way my legs and hip area looked. Can you give me a lower body makeover? (Suzette P, New Hyde Park, NY)Answer

A good solid leg or lower body routine will start with squats. I assume that you are in good physical condition, barring any hip, knee or ankle issues Ė injury free.

  • The basic squat can be done: free style, using a body bar, or dumbbells for extra weight. Try 3 sets (12-15 working repetitions slowly and controlled). Imagine that you are sitting on an imaginary chair when you squat and push off your heels.
  • Lunges can be done stationary, front, rear and lateral, or more advanced, walking with weights. Maintain good form and control.
  • Mat work consists of leg lifts: side, hydrants, donkey kicks, etc. to target hips and glutes. For a more advanced workout strap on some ankle weights.
  • Calf raises will get the blood pumping in your legs and give you a sculpted look.
  • At the gym you can get a great lower body workout at the leg press. Gradually, add more weight as you advance in strength. Donít hyperextend. The hamstring machine will be a good complement to the leg press.
  • Modify your diet with balanced nutrient dense foods.
  • Add cardio like walking, jogging, or classes at the gym.
Keep everything in balance. Donít overdo and remember that muscles grow during rest periods. Also, vary your workout sessions to keep motivation and improvement at an all time high!

Listen to Frank Mikulka’s Weekly Fitness Tips every week on Debbie Mandel’s Turn On Your Inner Light Show every Tuesday evening from 7:00 to 7:30 pm on WGBB 1240AM. Also available on