There is one part in our lower body that naturally tends to stand out among others and those are our calves. Having nicely toned and defined calves are something that can really benefit and improve our overall appeal. But for many of us, having those nicely defined calves can be hard to achieve!
Even though we walk on our calves all day long, use them more than any other muscle in our body, and use them to literally carry our entire body, they can still end being less defined than we like. Skinny calves are actually one of the most common issues in the world of fitness, but by using a variety of methods, this is something that can definitely be improved upon. There are a few things we can do to make our calves look sexier, filled, and more defined that eventually we’ll want to show off our calves all day long. 🙂
Benefits Of Stronger Calves & Why You Should Work On Them
- Will improve your overall appearance.
- Will allow you to run at a faster pace.
- Will give you more stability in your other workouts
- Will improve physical symmetry.
- Will improve lower body flexibility.
- Will give a better look to your overall physique.
- Will lead to better cardiovascular health & more muscle.
What This Means & How To Fix Skinny Calves
In order for you to build more toned and defined calves, you need to work them more and make sure to never leave them out of your workout routine. More importantly, we need to add and increase the pressure on these muscles in order for them to grow.
Reason being that we walk on our calves all day long so they naturally are already able to handle a lot of weight as they’ve grown accustomed to carrying our bodies around. Therefore its important that we always focus on a 25 to 30 rep range with each isolated calf workout. Keep in mind, that calf workouts aren’t the only thing we can do to accomplish much more tone and definition within our calves.
One thing that’s especially great at achieving calf definition is walking or running at an incline, which will also activate a lot of your other lower body muscles as well. You can also use a stair climber in conjunction with the following calf workouts.
Exercises For Stronger Calves
When building your calves using isolation exercises, always try and aim for 25 – 30 reps. This is the most effective range in order for you to build bigger and stronger calves.
A. Calf Raises:
Make sure to mix up your work out by doing both standing and seated calf raises. Aim for doing 5 sets of 25 to 30 reps at a weight that will allow you to fully contract your calf muscles.
B. Calf Press (on leg press machine):
Aim for 3 sets of 30 reps each, while keeping a slight bend at the knee for maximum effectiveness. Choose the weight you feel most comfortable starting out with and gradually adjust from there. Main thing to keep in mind is keeping your weight low enough so you can push out those 30 reps.
By doing compound exercises like squats, you’re not only strengthening the lower body, but the body as a whole and is possibly one of the best workouts you can do for all the major muscles in your legs. The thing I’d like to mention with squats is that this is the best option for those looking to build a lot of lower body mass. If you simply want to add more tone and definition, I would stick with doing the calf press and raises in conjunction with walking/running on an incline or uphill.
Tips & Advice For Stronger Calves
Ideally, you’ll want to work your calves using these 3 exercise workouts 2-3 times a week for maximum effectiveness and don’t wait to do these at the end of your leg workout when the rest of your body is tired. If you really want to build great calves, do them in the beginning and put as much mental focus on them as you would with any other muscle group you’d work on.
Most importantly, next time you go on a walk, make sure to really go uphill or at a very deep incline, which will work like a charm. Making sure to stretch them is also highly recommended.
Follow the the above tips and I think you’ll see a big improvement in your calf development. When it comes to the calves you really don’t have as much variety in terms of the workouts you can do as you might with the rest of your body. But follow these 3 workouts: Standing Calf Press, Seated Calf Press, and Calf Press on the leg press and you should see some major improvements.
You can even begin by doing the standing calf press without any weights by using your own body weight, which also works very well. You can easily begin doing calf raises right at home by simply lifting up your heels by pushing down on your toes. You’re definitely going to love the burn. And for those looking to gain the best overall leg development, remember your squats, which will also contribute to an increase in upper body strength as well!
Do you have any recommended calf workouts you’d like to add to the list? Feel free to leave them in the comments below 🙂