Now, it's time for a challenging exercise for your lower body. The Lunges are an exercise that intermediate level exercisers should be able to attempt, and eventually properly perform. Personally, I don't necessarily enjoy lunges, but this is an excellent exercise to build lower body strength, particularly strength in your quadriceps, hamstring and glute muscles. So let's go ahead and knock it out.
With this exercise you can use your body weight only or you can hold dumbbells in each hand. If you're going to hold dumbbells, just hold the dumbbells out to the side with your arms fully extended.
First, stand with your feet shoulder width apart and then step out, or lunge, a few feet in front of you with one leg, while keeping your back leg stable.
Now, lower your body toward the ground. You want to step out far enough so that when you move your body down into the lunge position your forward knee stays above your ankle - do not bend your knee so much that your knee is above your mid-foot or your toes. This can be a bit difficult to determine when first doing lunges, but with time you will learn the proper distance.
Once you are down into your lunge position, make sure that your back knee is bent, but not touching the ground.
Next, push off with your front foot and elevate your body out of the lunge and return to the starting position.
Once you do 8 to 12 on one side, you should perform 8 to 12 repetitions on the other side.
When doing your second set, start with the left leg if you started with the right on the first set or vice versa. You should have done three sets of 8 to 12 on each leg at the end of your lunge workout.
Your legs may feel a bit shaky when first beginning to do the lunge because your legs are not used to this level of exercise intensity. When done consistently this will improve over time.
Always make sure your knee stays above your ankle to avoid placing excessive stress on the knee joint when doing a lunge.