Rob Riches walks us through a complete leg workout on the LeverGym . His analytical approach to his workout teaches us about proper form, the effects of different foot positions and stances, and progressive training methods.
Alternating Lunges and Leg Extensions
About Rob Riches
Rob Riches is a Fitness Model, 2x WBFF World Fitness Champion and a personal trainer with certifications through NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), YMCA & REPs (Register of Exercise Professionals).
Hi my name is Rob Riches and welcome back to my power and strength training series. Today’s focus is all about the legs. The next exercise in my leg workout is lunges. And I’m doing this on a free weight machine to help keep me fix to that range of motion. This helps keep more of the effort placed directly on my quad but switch it up. Use a free weight Olympic bar and do walking lunges, dumbbell walking lunges and see which gives you the best feeling in the legs. Another great benefit about using the machine is it helps support the weight directly right where it needs to be instead of balancing about using free weights. So I don’t need as much weight to keep that intensity high on my quad. So still great exercise to work on my glutes and the lower back. Time to add some more weight.
With lunges there’s a couple of variations you could do to shift the emphasis to be more on the quads or more on the hamstrings. And for that, it’s all about the gap, how far you step back. So to focus more on the quads take a half step back. Yes, the knees are gonna come forward so you’re gonna be more compacted but all of that load is directly on the quad leg. And if you wanna focus more on the glutes and the hamstring, take a further step back keeping that heel raised to help you pivot and step down. You’ll feel it more in the hamstring then.
This is also a great exercise for helping to create that separation between the quad and the hamstring. So great for competitors, you want to bring out that detail and conditioning to give that overall balanced physique. It really takes it out of me. Okay, next exercise. One of my favourite ones for legs and that’s just probably because I can really see them working. And this one is seated leg extensions. So let me get the bench in and I’ll set this up.
Leg extensions are great exercise for bringing out that detail and separation between the four different muscle groups in the quads. Now it’s time to build-up of lactic acid in here so as that a by-product of exercise from the oxygen and the waste of the energy from the muscle. I wanna stretch it out and flush it out so I’m good for my next work set. So for this just a light quad stretch. With stretches, it’s important to hold it for at least 15-20 seconds, breathing in and each time you breathe out just try and increase that stretch allowing the muscle fibers to relax. Okay now I’m good for some more weight.
Second work set, often the toughest of the work sets for each exercise and that’s because we got a feel for the first work set and push ourselves towards our maximum by the time the second work set comes with added weight on, we kinda delivered the most energy we can in that work set. The third work set is a bit like an over drive for a car. We’re just really trying to struggle to maintain that top level. So this is gonna be my best work set and for this one I’m gonna keep my toes pointing upright to really focus on the quads.
So on this final work set on leg extension, I’m gonna increase the intensity and make it more challenging by shifting the emphasis towards the outer portion of my quads and keeping my heels and knees in the same alignment but angling my toes about 20 or 30 degrees outwards which will bring the outer quads more into play. Those final few reps really pushed me through my limit, above and beyond. After that I kept the muscle tensed by keeping the weight up at its highest point squeezing in the quads and then trying to slowly control the weight down about twice as slow as I was in my usual rep. Really burnt them out. Okay, enough of quads again keeping it short but always intense.