The inner thigh is a common trouble spot for many people—including me! The body tends to deposit extra fat there, and it’s also an area that doesn’t get a lot of work in everyday activities.
This quick workout targets and tones this trouble spot, and strengthens the inner thighs from the inside out. (One note: This routine isn’t about giving you a “thigh gap”; although our culture is bizarrely fixated on this anomaly, that gap is mostly about bone structure—and no exercise can change that.)
But this routine will help sculpt and strengthen your inner thighs. Aim to perform the routine 3 to 5 times a week.
Lie facedown on a mat with your feet together, arms bent with your hands meeting under your forehead and your head resting gently on the backs of your hands. Pull your core in toward your lower back and carefully lift your legs off the mat about 2 to 6 inches and point your toes. Don’t raise your legs too high—instead, concentrate on keeping your body long. Turn your toes out and then spread your legs until your feet are just wider than hip-width apart. Quickly bring your feet back together. Move your legs out and back as fast as you can for about 30 seconds, or as fast as you can without straining your lower back.
Lie on your back with your hands clasped loosely behind your head. Raise your legs to about a 45-degree angle to the floor. (The closer your legs are to the floor, the more challenging the move will be for your core.) Engage your core and raise your head, neck, and shoulders off the mat. Cross one leg over the other and then back as fast as you can, alternating from right to left. Make sure your legs stay straight and the movement comes from the hips and thighs, not the knees. Continue for 30 seconds or as long as you can. If you feel strain in your neck, rest your head on the mat as you do the move.
Lie on your left side. Support your head with your left hand, stretch your left leg out and cross your right leg in front of the left, with your right foot flat on the mat. Lift your left leg up and then lower it back down toward the floor—but don’t let it touch the floor. Keep your torso still and pull your abs in to support your back. Repeat 20 times, and then switch sides.