You probably found your way here because you’re looking for tips on how to lose thigh fat. Well, that’s exactly what you will be learning by the end of this article.
Unfortunately (or fortunately), women tend to store more fat in the hip and thigh region of their bodies than men. While it has its perks, it can get worrisome when it gets bigger than it should.
But then, the question is: why do women often gain weight on their thighs?
The short answer is Estrogen. A crucial hormone that is responsible for several functions in the female body – including our “curvy” shapes. To stay within context, however, I’ll spare you further details on that.
Tips on How To Lose Thigh Fat
Now that we know the cause of thigh fat, how then do we go about fighting it? Several studies like this one here have established that it is not practicable to target a particular area of the body for fat reduction naturally.
To lose thigh fat then, we should aim for a general reduction in our body weight. In the remainder of this article, we will be covering the steps and lifestyle changes you need to make to achieve that purpose.
1. Healthy Dieting
As the popular saying goes, food before fitness. Before we get into the exercises targeted at your thighs, we need to point out the need for a healthy diet as part of your efforts to lose weight.
healthy diets have several health benefits
The goal of dietary changes in all weight loss programs is to fulfill a necessary prerequisite for weight loss, which is to burn more calories than you consume.
According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025 (PDF), the following are what defines a healthy eating plan:
- Emphasizes vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products
- Includes a variety of protein foods such as seafood, lean meats and poultry, eggs, legumes (beans and peas), soy products, nuts, and seeds.
- Stays within your daily calorie needs
- Is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars
Once you start eating right, then it’s time to follow it up with the proper exercises that are targeted at your thighs.
Although what people eat has been found to have a greater impact on their fitness levels and body goals more than the type of exercise they perform, exercises should still be a vital part of your daily life. More so when you are on a quest to discover how to lose thigh fat
Before we get into the type of exercises you should adopt for leaner thighs, you need to know the difference between the two forms of exercises out there:
- Strength Training
- Aerobic Exercises
While Strength training is focused on the musculoskeletal system (your thigh falls in here), Aerobic exercises are meant for the cardiorespiratory system. Experts advocate a combination of both forms of exercise for an optimal result.
Exercises to Lose Thigh Fat
The following is a combination of cardio and strength training exercises that are targeted at your lower body. A good mix of them can be highly beneficial in trimming thigh fats naturally.
This often disregarded exercise has so many benefits that are beyond burning thigh fat alone.
I can’t think of a more beneficial exercise at the moment when it comes to getting your lower body in shape. The video below shows what a good squat is like:
There are several variations of squats but if you’re just starting, a normal bodyweight squat is good enough for you. As you develop more endurance, you can start adding weights to your sessions for a quicker result.
Although it can also pass as cardio, this is a vigorous and intense workout that involves four different exercises: a squat, plank, push up, and a jump.
The video below shows how to perform burpees the right way for effective results.
If done right, burpees can be a very effective means of burning calories as your entire body is needed to carry each lap out.
It made our list because your legs, hips, and stomach muscles are part of the major muscles a good burpee works on.
- Leg Circles
Another effective exercise that targets your thighs. You can either do single or double leg circles depending on the one you’re most comfortable with.
With single-leg circles, you lay back on a flat surface, raise a leg and rotate it in a defined pattern.
As you must have observed from the video above, it involves a little more than what I described earlier, but it’s a beginner exercise that is not complicated
- Jumping Jacks
You probably still remember your favorite childhood exercise? Well, you just might be needing to do it again.
It is also an intense exercise that involves jumping into the air with legs spread apart, and arms coming together above your head. Experts recommend a fifteen minutes rest between sets.
Jumping jacks is an important exercise for losing thigh fat because it stretches the muscles in the lower body such as your hamstrings, glutes, etc.
- Side Shuffle Switch
This is a common drill among professional athletes that involves shuffling from one side to the other in quick and ordered steps
You have to decide the number of steps you will be completing in each move in advance. The video below perfectly illustrates the right way of performing a side shuffle switch:
It is very useful in our aim to reduce thigh fat because it’s targeted at your thighs, hips, and calve muscles. If you are a beginner, be careful not to move at a high pace though.
This can either be done standing or lying on your side. For most women, it would probably be easier to perform sidekicks lying down. The video below explains how to perform sidekicks the right way.
It is hugely beneficial in your fight against thigh fat because it works the major muscles in your lower body, including the thighs.
Cycling is another very effective means of burning thigh fat. This is because your thigh muscles contribute a lot to the forward motion of the bicycle. Experts recommend an average of 30minutes of cycling at any session for effective weight loss.
The good thing about cycling is that it can be integrated into your lifestyle effortlessly. For instance, instead of driving or using public transport, you can cycle to work if it is convenient and within a reasonable distance.
This report by the Washington Post highlights some of the benefits of cycling to work. If it is not convenient for you, however, indoor cycling is also an alternative. Apps like Zwift, Bkool, Rouvy, etc can be very useful.
Related Article: A Quick Look at Type 2 Diabetes
How To Lose Thigh Fat Without Exercise
For certain reasons, it may not be feasible for you to engage in any of the physical activities above. If you are in that category, then it is normal for you to wonder how to lose thigh fat without exercise
The good news is that you can achieve that without the strenuous physical activities listed above with the right dietary changes. The following lifestyle changes can help you lose thigh fat without going to the gym:
- Lower Carb: We all already know that excessive consumption of high-carb meals often results in weight gain.
- Low Salt: Sodium chloride is known to cause water retention in the body – which often causes bloating. Processed foods contain lots of salts, so you’d want to reduce your dependency on them.
- Sleep: Lots of studies have established a direct relationship between getting enough sleep and weight loss.
- Water: A report by the CDC found out that 36% of Americans drink less than four (4) cups of water a day. Since you are in search of how to lose thigh fat, you should not belong to that category. About 2-3 liters of water a day is sufficient for the average adult.
- Stock up on Lean Proteins: As often advised to weight loss patients, you want to replace those fatty and spicy snacks with foods rich in lean protein. This includes skinless chicken and turkey, plain yogurt, beans, peas, etc.
The following factors are possible contributors to the fat you gained both in your thighs and other parts of your body. Knowing them, and taking necessary actions should be a top consideration as you learn how to lose thigh fat.
- Cut Down On Sugary Drinks
It has been established that a high intake of sugary drinks increases the tendency of health challenges like type 2 diabetes, weight gain and obesity, heart disease, and so many more.
While learning how to lose thigh fat, you should make a deliberate effort to drastically reduce your consumption of sugary drinks. A healthier alternative is water, and if you love flavors, you can spice your water up with slices of lemon or berries.
As said earlier, several studies have established a close relationship between sound sleep and weight loss. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends that the average adult should sleep at least seven (7) or more hours per night consistently for optimal health.
If you lack good sleep hygiene, consider making some of the following changes as recommended by the CDC:
- Have a specific time for going to bed each night, even on weekends
- Stay away from heavy meals just before bedtime
- Engage in physically demanding activities during daytime
- Electronic devices such as computers, smartphones, etc should be taken away from the bedroom
Putting the recommendations above into practice will improve the quality of your sleep overall.
This is one of the first few lifestyle changes you should consider adopting on your way to learning how to lose thigh fat with or without exercise
While experts are yet to establish a relationship between alcohol consumption and obesity or weight gain, it is still believed to have a hand in weight gain because:
- It causes less satisfaction from food, leading to greater hunger
- it impedes the burning of fat in the body
- It has high-calorie contents
The reasons above aside, excessive intake of alcohol can also lead to heart or liver disease, high blood pressure, etc
Ineffective management of it could be part of the reason for the extra weight you are experiencing on your thigh areas.
Chronic stress has been found to cause weight gain because of the increased cortisol level it causes in the body.
Registered dietician, Gabriella Mancella in this article explains that high cortisol levels can lead to weight gain because it causes increased appetite and cravings for sweet, fatty, and salty foods.
Let’s be honest, some fats are just too stubborn and resistant even to the most extreme of exercises and dieting. In circumstances like that, a surgical procedure called liposuction is the way out.
It is a way of slimming and reshaping areas of the body by removing excess fat. One of the major obstacles with it though is that it can be pricey.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons in a 2020 survey found out that the average cost of liposuction is $3,637
Most of the time, that figure does not cover it all. You may be required to pay additional fees for operating room facilities, anesthesia, and other related expenses.
If you must lose your thigh fat at all cost and can afford it, consider speaking with a board-certified surgeon for professional advice
We have gotten to the end of our little discussion on how to lose thigh fat. Hopefully, you’ve learned a thing or two from it. To reiterate, it is not possible to lose fat naturally at a particular spot on your body
The only way to achieve that is to adopt certain lifestyle changes that will help you lose weight body-wide, and this can be achieved with a balanced combination of healthy eating and proper exercise.
Which of the exercises are you most comfortable with? Let’s hear your thoughts below in the comment box. Cheers to a better life!