Weight loss is no gamble and let’s confess, there are no shortcuts! Losing weight in a healthy way includes tailor made diet plans and strict exercising regimes. Even though you might hate some specific types of exercises but you need to understand that if you don’t include them in your workout regime then you are one who is at loss as you are subconsciously delaying your weight loss goals. If you are actually serious about losing weight fast then you should definitely consider adding lunges to your workout routine as it is an excellent exercise that involves a lot of muscles which ultimately means you will burn a lot of fat. Like squats, lunges work most of the muscles in your legs including your quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves. Many people hate this exercise as they consider it to be tough, but the very reason it is so good for weight loss is that it requires a lot a muscle and engages your whole body too. According to Health Status, adding 30 minutes of cardio along with a 15-minute session of lunges can burn up to 400 calories for a 150-pound person.
Benefits of Lunges
Some of the major advantages of including lunges in your weight loss goals are highlighted as under:-
1. Build leg and core strength
Besides being an excellent warm-up exercise, lunges actually play a major role in strengthening your lower body. The basic lunges help you to strengthen your leg muscles, especially the quadriceps of your front thigh, your posterior thighs’ hamstrings, and the gastrocnemius and soleus of the calf. Not only this, the exercise also targets your core muscles – your abdomen, back, chest, pelvis, and buttocks– work together so you can adjust and maintain your lunge position without losing your balance!
2. Improves Flexibility
If you have been noticing tightness in the muscles that bend or flex your legs at the hips, doing some simple lunges to stretch these muscles would help ease the discomfort. Lunges play an active role in improving the flexibility of your hip joints and prevent lower back pain caused by tight hip flexors. Not on this, the exercise also helps you improve the dynamic flexibility of your ankle and knee.
3. Tone Muscles
Doing lunges regularly would help you in strengthening and toning your quadriceps and your glutes. Along with hip extensions, squats and step ups, lunges is also a good option for your workout especially if you want to tone your buttocks.
Types of Lunges
Some of the most common types of lunge variations you can include in your daily workout sessions are explicated as under:-
1. Bodyweight Lunges
Before moving forward with variations, it is really important to master the basic lunge. The simplest and perfect way to do bodyweight lunge is –
1. Place your hands on your hips, and stand tall with your shoulders pushed back.
2. Step forward with your left leg and slowly lower your body until your front knee is bent at least 90 degrees Pause, then push yourself to the starting position.
2. Bicep Curl Lunges
For this lunge variation, you would be requiring dumbbells. The right steps to do this one are –
1. Grab a pair of dumbbells and hold them at arm’s length next to your sides, your palms facing each other. Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart.
2. Step forward with your right leg and lower your body. As you lunge, curl both dumbbells up to your shoulders.
3. Lower the dumbbells and then return to the starting position. Repeat the same with left leg!
3. Goblet Reverse Lunges
To do this one –
1. Hold a dumbbell vertically against your chest, with both hands cupping it.
2. Step backward with your right leg and lower your body into a lunge.
3. Pause, then return to the starting position. Repeat on the other side.
4. Dumbell Lateral Lunges
1. Hold a pair of dumbbells at arm’s length next to your sides.
2. Lift your left foot and take a big step to your left as you push your hips backward and lower your body by dropping your hips and bending your left knee.
3. Pause, then quickly push yourself back to the starting position. Repeat on the other side.
Tips when doing Lunges
Here are some tips that will help you to do this exercise in the best way and also maximize the benefits you get from including it in your workout sessions:-
1. Keep your back straight and avoid leaning forward. This would allow you to gain maximum benefit and to avoid injuries.
2. Remember to align your shoulders with your hips throughout the exercise.
3. Refrain from extending the knee of your forward leg past your ankle.
4. Keep your head up, facing forward.