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The 5 Best Exercises to Tone Your Thighs in One Month

Strength training will help you achieve an impressive toned look.

Having jiggly thighs can be very frustrating—especially in the warmer weather when it's shorts and sundress season. The best thing you can do to help yourself out is to learn the most effective exercises to tone your thighs in a month, according to Mike Bohl, MD, MPH, ALM, a member of our Medical Expert Board and a certified personal trainer and nutrition coach.

Dr. Bohl explains that the muscles in your thighs are used to performing a lot of work. After all, they help you get from one place to the next and support your body weight. Needless to say, if you really want to build up your thigh muscles and achieve an impressive toned look, engaging in intense strength training exercises is the name of the game. Working in a lower rep range (six to 12 reps) with a higher weight is beneficial for muscular hypertrophy.

"The thighs have some of the largest muscles in the body, including the quadriceps on the front and the hamstrings in back," Dr. Bohl adds. "While exercises do help to grow the muscles, looking toned often comes down to your body fat percentage, so if you want to look like you have toned thighs, it's good to follow a healthy diet in addition to exercising."

So along with just the right healthy eating habits, here are five of the best exercises to tone your thighs in a month, provided by Dr. Bohl. Keep reading to learn all about them, and next, be sure to check out the 5 Easiest Exercises for Slim & Slender Thighs.

1. Leg Extensions

woman doing leg extensions on machine at gym, leg-strengthening exercises

This first exercise can be performed on a selectorized machine at your local gym. You'll set up for leg extensions by sitting down at the machine and pressing your back against the seat pad so it's totally flat. Bend both knees so they form 90-degree angles. Situate your feet under the leg pad, and take hold of the handlebars on each side of the seat. Then, press your legs upward against the resistance until they're extended. Gradually lower your legs to the position you started in. Perform three to six sets of six to 12 reps

2. Leg Flexions

The leg flexion is another exercise that can be performed on a selectorized machine. This time around, though, you'll begin with extended legs and bend both knees as they descend against the resistance. Complete three to six sets of six to 12 reps.

6 Exercises for Toned Thighs That Don't Require Equipment

3. Leg Presses

mature woman demonstrating leg press to regain muscle mass as you age

"Leg presses work out almost all of the muscles in the thighs plus the buttocks," Dr. Bohl says. "They involve sitting down and pushing a plate away from the body with the legs."

To set up for this exercise, sit at the machine so your back's flat against the seat, and your head is also on the pad for support. Plant your feet about hip-width apart on the footplate. Press away from the footplate until your legs are straight but not locked out. Then, head back to the start position. Perform three to six sets of six to 12 reps.

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4. Squats

woman doing bodyweight squats on yoga mat

"Depending on your ability level, squats can be done with just your body weight or while holding dumbbells or a barbell," Dr. Bohl explains. "Like leg presses, they work almost all of the muscles in the thighs."

To get started, position your feet shoulder-width or hip-width distance apart. Extend your arms in front of you, place them on your hips, or keep them by your sides. Next, bend your knees, and press your hips back as if you're sitting back on a chair. Lower into a squat until your thighs reach a parallel position to the ground or lower. Then, press away from the floor to rise up to standing. Complete three to six sets of six to 12 reps.

5. Lunges

woman doing bodyweight lunges, exercises for slimmer hips

The last of our best exercises to tone your thighs in a month is the lunge. "Lunges can also be done with just your body weight or while holding additional weights depending on your ability level. You can also do lunges forward or from side to side to work out different parts of the thigh muscles," Dr. Bohl tells us.

For lunges, position your feet shoulder-width distance apart, and take a big stride forward with your right leg. Bend both knees as you lower, all while keeping your torso tall. Make sure your front knee doesn't move beyond your toes. Press through your front heel to come back up. Repeat the same motion on your left side. Complete three to six sets of six to 12 reps per side.

Alexa Mellardo
Alexa is the Mind + Body Deputy Editor of Eat This, Not That!, overseeing the M+B channel and delivering compelling fitness, wellness, and self-care topics to readers. Read more about Alexa
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