If you want to lose thighs, it is important to first know the cause of their volume and then find a suitable solution to slim them. Stéphane Robinet, sports coach, gives us his advice on how to lose weight in the thighs.
The thighs: a little anatomical reminder
The thighs are made up of the following muscles:
The quadriceps (front side of the thigh);
The hamstring (back side of the thigh);
The adductor (inner side of the thigh);
The abductor (outer side of the thigh).
Why am I taking thighs?
An unbalanced diet
If you eat too much fatty and sugary foods, your body will gradually store fat reserves.
To slim down thighs, it is, therefore, necessary to eat a balanced and varied diet. It is important not to skip meals. Also make sure to consume foods rich in fiber (cereals, vegetables, fruits, etc.), animal and vegetable proteins (white meats, eggs, lentils, etc.), and essential fatty acids (fatty fish such as salmon, seafood oil, etc.). coconut or hazelnut, almonds, walnuts …), all in quantities determined according to your daily needs and your physical activity.
Avoid alcohol, sugary drinks such as soda or industrial orange juice, pastries, sweets or processed products as much as possible.
Diets that are too strict should be avoided, as they are not good for your health and even less for the figure! And there is a risk of quickly regaining pounds as soon as the diet is stopped.
Lack of physical activity
A sedentary lifestyle is one of the main causes of fat formation on the thighs. It is recommended to move at least 30 minutes a day by practicing a moderate to intense activity (brisk walking, cycling …). If you decide to get back to the sport, know that “consistency is very important to obtain results”, recalls Stéphane Robinet, sports coach.
Cellulite is formed when the storage of fat in adipocytes (fat cells) becomes too great. The fat cells then become larger and more numerous, they suffocate the fibers and skin tissues, which causes the famous “orange peel” appearance.
Water retention occurs when the body stores too much water and does not remove enough of it.
The main culprit in water retention is excessive salt intake. This is because it attracts water into the tissues and retains it. As a reminder, only 4 to 6 grams of sodium per person per day are needed. Slimming thighs: the solutions
Sports to focus on
The sports to be favored are mainly those which allow you to lose weight. Indeed, we cannot lose fat only on one part of the body. Weight loss occurs as a whole. It is, therefore, necessary to favor cardio activities (swimming for example) by coupling them with weight training exercises to give the thighs a curved appearance.
“The best is for interval training”
Endurance activity is generally recommended to lose fat in the legs and thighs.
- Walking will promote blood circulation and the elimination of fat;
- Running helps you lose weight quickly. Small tip: running slowly but over time will be more effective than running fast but for a short time. Alternating between walking and running is a very good technique to make the physical effort seem less intense;
- Cycling directly calls on the muscles of the legs, promoting the loss of centimeters in the thighs and buttocks;
- The jump rope will be a good way to burn calories and firm the thighs (to be avoided, however, if you tend to suffer from venous insufficiency or even urinary leaks);
- The water aerobics will help firm the thighs, thanks to the action of the water which will tone this part of the body.
A word of advice: for jumping rope, or for running … use good shoes that absorb shocks, and do this physical activity on not too hard ground.
To have a better chance of losing thighs, you need to follow regular physical activity, ideally 3 times a week. The fat will then gradually decrease, and the muscles will develop.
Sports to avoid
There aren’t really any sports to avoid when it comes to thinning your thighs. On the other hand, be careful when you practice certain activities that place a lot of strain on the lower body so that you do not “abuse” them, otherwise you will put on your thighs instead of losing them.
The exercises to do to lose weight thighs
All these exercises make it possible to lose thighs, provided they are carried out without putting too much of a load. te (which would cause an enlargement of the muscles and therefore an increase in their volume) and to associate them with cardio sessions.
The squat to lose thighs weight
The squat is considered one of the best exercises for the thighs. It stimulates the entire lower body, but also the upper limbs. It can be done with equipment (barbell / dumbbells) or bodyweight (see our video How to do squats).
Other options: go down in a squat position by placing a Swiss ball between your back, always straight, and a wall. You can also opt for La Chaise de Killy, a very good exercise to tone and refine the thighs.
Slits to lose thighs weight
Lunges are a great addition to the squat as they tone all of the thighs and improve their shape. Just like the squat, you can perform lunges at bodyweight, with a barbell, or with dumbbells. They can be done in a static position or while walking (see our video How to do lunges).
Deadlift to lose thighs weight
The deadlift is one of the most complete exercises in bodybuilding, it works in particular the back of the thighs (hamstrings). You can do this using a barbell or dumbbells (see our Deadlift video).
The leg-extension to lose thighs weight
This exercise, performed on a guided machine, works the front of the thighs (quadriceps). This is a great option for those who want to start weight training.
The thigh press to lose thighs weight
The inclined thigh press allows you to lift fairly large loads without putting too much strain on the back. It has the advantage of working almost all of the muscles of the thighs. Be careful, depending on how you position your feet on the platform, the muscles used will not be the same:
- Parallel feet placed on the top: solicitation of the muscles at the back of the thighs (hamstrings);
- Parallel feet placed on the bottom: solicitation of the muscles in the front of the thighs (quadriceps);
- Feet apart pointed outwards: solicitation of the muscles inside the thighs (adductors);
- Feet tightened in the middle: straining the muscles in the front of the thighs (quadriceps).
The prone leg curl
This guided machine helps tone and strengthen the back of the thighs (hamstrings).
Adductor and abductor machines / low pulley
Guided machines are good tools for working the adductors (inner thighs) and abductors (outer thighs) when you are a beginner. They allow you to redraw the thighs and tone them.
The low pulley work is rather reserved for more experienced people because it requires to be well positioned and to have bases in bodybuilding.
Reminder: before you start weight training, ask for the help of a qualified coach to supervise you and teach you how to make correct movements.
Losing thighs: the help of aesthetic medicine
In women, the thighs are a storage area for fatty tissue. Cosmetic medicine and surgery offer techniques for acting on this fat, by losing inches around the thighs.
These two disciplines allow a definitive elimination of a certain number of adipocytes (cells which store fat). The proposed techniques are called “bodycontouring or bodyshaping” allowing to redraw the silhouette of the thighs.
Cryolipolysis, the most common technique today
Cryolipolysis is today the technique most often proposed in aesthetic medicine to remove part of the fat located on the thighs.
How does it work?
The principle: during a session of about an hour, the fat cells are strongly cooled (temperature below -10 ° C) using a device.
Usually, only one session of cryolipolysis is needed to get results. There is about a 30% reduction in volume in the treated area, with more than 2 cm per thigh, with results evaluating after 3 to 4 months.
The side effects
The side effects and complications are relatively low. A small pain may persist for 7 to 10 days after the cryolipolysis session, a small edema may appear, and in rare cases, hematomas.
There is also quite often a decrease in the sensitivity of the treated area for 2 to 3 weeks (which is quite normal). It is important, after cryolipolysis, to avoid sport for 5 days.
After the session
After the session, no sick leave, no panties, you can return to work immediately.
This intervention can be supplemented by other treatments, such as endermology sessions (manipulation of the skin and fat, massages against cellulite).
Warning: it should be noted that cryolipolysis is a technique that does note not strictly speaking against cellulite, but on the fatty cells located deep in the thighs.
What about cosmetic surgery?
In cosmetic surgery, we now offer so-called soft liposuction which consists of fetching the fat in the areas where it is located, by introducing a very fine cannula through a small orifice that will suck the fat using a pump.
Classic liposuction and gentle liposuction: what’s the difference?
Unlike conventional liposuction, gentle liposuction is performed under local anesthesia, and the cannula used to suck the fat will be much smaller; the incision points are thinner and the risk of wave effects greatly reduced. Gentle liposuction is therefore a solution that does little to affect the quality of the skin.
The suction will be smoother and will treat areas where the fat is in small amounts. For large fatty overloads, the surgeon generally offers classic liposuction.
After the operation, there would be a 35% reduction in volume in the treated area. You have to wait 2 to 3 months to be able to judge the results.
The risks and drawbacks to be expected
As with any intervention of this kind, liposuction involves some risk and can cause certain undesirable effects: skin scars at the level of the cannula insertions (which most of the time disappear), bruises or edema, pain that can remain 10 to 15 days, a light local anesthesia, wearing a panty for about 3 weeks, a work stoppage for a few days …
What are the risks of phlebitis? The risk is mainly related to the immobilization in connection with the intervention, studies do not show that there is no more increase in phlebitis after liposuction compared to any other operation.
And after the intervention?
Several weeks after the operation, it is advisable to talk to a little sport to work the adductors and abductors. It is also advisable to be careful with eating too salty to avoid having too much water retention.
Wearing a panty is necessary for 3 weeks after the operation.
Please note: this procedure is not a treatment for cellulite.
Mandatory consultation with an anesthesiologist before the operation (pre-anesthesia consultation).