It is normal for body fat to be distributed unevenly throughout the body. For some women, the fat chooses to lodge disproportionately in the hips. Others have it stored in the belly, and yet others have it in their arms. Do you have a little too much fat deposited in your legs and thighs? If you do, you might be tempted to think you can shed the leg fat just by working them out. But, according to science, that’s not how it works.

Why you won’t lose fat in your legs by working them out alone

The body loses fat whenever there is a short supply of calories as a result of exercise or diet. The problem, however, is that working out one part of the body to lose fat in that particular part isn’t quite effective. In a study published on, a group of women were made to work out just one leg over a period of twelve weeks. When the experiment was over, the participants were found to have the same amount of fat in both the training leg as well as the control leg.

In short, spot weight loss is a myth. You cannot work out one part of the body to make it trimmer. That’s because you cannot control where the body gets its energy from within the body. Although the women lost more than 10 percent of their body fat, it did not come from the training leg. The fat that was burnt for energy came from their upper bodies.

You will have to lose a significant amount of fat in other regions of the body before losing the one in your legs. That’s because leg and hip fat is closely linked with fertility, and the body will try to keep it by all means.

What to do instead

But for those that are trying to get some definition in their legs, leg workouts are not at all useless. Consistent workout will help build muscle in your legs, hips, and buttocks and this will make them shapelier. You can start a workout routine that includes some of the most popular leg workouts including lunges and squats.

Do not forget to eat healthy food and drink lots of water to rehydrate. Healthy sources of lean protein such as tuna and salmon should be on your table regularly. You will also need to keep an eye on your calorie intake to make sure you are not undoing your workouts with an improper calorie load.