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How To Lose Thigh Fat 2024? An Eating & Exercising Guide

how to lose thigh fat
Combining exercise and diet can help you lose weight. Photo: Nghi Tran

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Like numerous individuals, you may be diligently striving to shed pounds and attain a healthy weight and physique. A common but frequently overlooked problem area is the accumulation of fat around the thighs. Although abdominal fat often garners more attention, asking: How to lose thigh fat fast? It is equally crucial to manage and reduce fat in the thigh region.

Understanding the impact of body composition[1] on health reveals that excessive adipose tissue in the thighs can affect insulin sensitivity, potentially elevating blood sugar levels. Moreover, inner and outer thigh fat can serve as an indicator of various cardio-metabolic conditions marked by inflammation, abnormal metabolism, and atypical fat storage. 

To strengthen your lower body and stimulate muscle activity, incorporating a leg-focused workout day into your routine is beneficial. This approach aids in maintaining a holistic balance of overall health.

How To Reduce Thigh Fat?

  • Bodyweight Squats
  • Adductor Machine
  • Cable Adductions
  • Weighted Plie Squats
  • Lunges
  • Leg Press Machine
  • Leg Extensions

How To Lose Thigh Fat? Exercise To Try

When striving to lose thigh fat, note that losing weight[2] will require dietary changes, increased physical activity, and stress management in your daily life. This will entail leg day workouts, like squats and lunges. 

We’ll also discuss eating lean proteins, getting adequate fluids, and saying goodbye to high-sugar foods and processed foods. These improvements will be enhanced by meditation and mindful habits to manage stress and boost overall wellness.

Bodyweight Squats

Bodyweight squats are an effective way to amp up your quads. Quad workouts are important because they can improve the strength and performance of your legs, as well as your body in its entirety. 

Bodyweight Squats
Bodyweight Squats Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Stand up with your shoulders back, with your feet spread the distance of your hipbones.
  2. Bend your knees set your hips back as if you were sitting in a chair and hold your arms out in front of you.
  3. Have your thighs parallel to the floor and press your heels through the floor to rise back upright.


  • Keep feet shoulder-width apart, chest up, and back straight while squatting to protect knees and lower back.
  • Lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the ground or as far as flexibility allows, engaging glutes and quads effectively.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Aim for three to four sets with 10-15 reps per set.

Adductor Machine

The adductors are the inner thigh muscles that stabilize lower body movements. The proper function of these muscles is imperative for walking, sitting, and bending. The adductor machine is great for controlling how light or intense your inner thigh training can be. 

Adductor Machine
Adductor Machine Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Sit on the machine and place the pads between your thighs at a wide distance, squeezing them together until the pads touch.
  2. Reverse this action in slower motion until your thighs are in their original placement. Repeat as you wish.


  • Sit with your back firmly against the machine’s backrest and adjust the machine to fit your body comfortably.
  • Squeeze your inner thighs to bring the pads together, focusing on the adductor muscles, and avoid using momentum.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Three sets of 12-15 reps.

Cable Adductions

Cable adductions work the inner thighs and the hips as well. This speaks to the rotation of your hip joints and your ability to squat and stabilize your core muscles.  

Cable Adductions
Cable Adductions Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Stand sideways at a pulley machine, and attach a cuff to the cable and your ankle closest to the pulley.
  2. Step outward and grasp the bar. Stand on the uncuffed foot and let the cuffed foot be pulled toward the direction of the pulley.
  3. Exhale and position the cuffed leg in front of the other using your inner thigh to abduct the hips.
  4. Inhale and return to your starting posture.


  • Attach ankle cuffs to the cable machine and secure them snugly.
  • Maintain proper alignment and a slow, controlled motion throughout.
  • Start with a comfortable weight, and gradually increase resistance as you progress.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Three sets of 12-15 reps per leg.

Weighted Plie Squats

As the origin of the name suggests the plié squats involve bending. These squats are effective for the inner thighs, as well as alleviating hip pain and boosting mobility. Flexibility is improved as your movements become less tight. Keeping your torso upright also helps with sustained balance. 

Weighted Plie Squats
Weighted Plie Squats Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Clasp your hands in front of your chest and place your feet wider than hip-width apart with your toes pointed outward at a 45-degree angle.
  2. Tuck your pelvis as you keep your head over your hips, with your knees bent into a squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor.


  • Maintain proper posture with your back straight and chest up.
  • Focus on controlled, deep squats to engage your leg muscles effectively
  • Keep your knees tracking over your toes to protect your joints.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Three sets of 10-12 reps.


Lunges are advantageous and versatile, with many variations according to your end goal. It strengthens the lower body or thigh muscles and improves them for better daily function, including hips, which can positively impact even the way you sit during the day. 

Lunges Guide
Lunges Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Stand with your shoulders back and torso straight, with your hands on your hips and the right foot in front of the left one.
  2. Bend your knees and lower your body until the back knee is close to the floor and the front one is parallel to the floor, with even weight shared between the legs.
  3. Push back up to your original stance with your weight on your front heel.


  • Focus on maintaining a straight back and avoid leaning too far forward during lunges.
  • Pay attention to your balance by keeping your weight centered as you lunge forward or backward.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Aim for three sets of 10-12 lunges per leg.

Leg Press Machine

Another great workout is the leg press, as you can focus on the glutes and hamstrings. Since this is beneficial for your entire leg, it can boost strength, which is advantageous for mobility and function. 

Leg Press Machine
Leg Press Machine Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Lie on the machine with your knees bent 90 degrees and your head and back supported.
  2. Keep your feet positioned up wider than your shoulders and grab hold of the handles.
  3. Use your heels to extend your legs without locking your knees.
  4. Bend your knees to bring the weights down slowly.


  • Start with a suitable weight that allows you to complete the desired reps with proper form and control.
  • Ensure your knees are aligned with your feet and do not lock them out at the top of the movement.
  • Maintain a controlled pace, avoiding rapid or jerky movements to reduce the risk of injury.

Optimal Sets and Reps:  Three sets of eight to 10 reps.

Leg Extensions

The leg extension is a great way to give attention to your quads and maximize strength. In addition to this, it can be great for working out knee strength, as it works on the patellar ligaments.

Leg Extensions
Leg Extensions Guide. Photo: Team Design

How to do: 

  1. Position your back flush against the press machine with your knees bent at 90 degrees and the pad atop your legs just before the ankles.
  2. As you grab the handles, keep your back and thighs still and exhale as you extend your legs.
  3. Take a pause and then proceed by slowly lifting the weight.


  • Use proper form by keeping your back firmly against the bench and maintaining a controlled movement.
  • Avoid locking your knees at the top of the movement to prevent excessive strain on the joint.
  • Ensure you fully extend your knees without hyperextending them at the top of the movement for maximum muscle engagement and safety.

Optimal Sets and Reps: Three sets of 12-15 reps.

Adjust Diet To Reduce Thigh Fat

how to lose thigh fat
A balanced diet assists you in having toned legs. Photo: New Africa/Shutterstock

Cutting Out Sugary Foods

Sugary foods can contribute to empty calories and lead to extra pounds.[3] If you crave sweets, you can pick sweeter fruits over candies or ice cream because your body is actually desiring the nutrients and consuming fewer calories from fruit anyway.

Eat Enough Protein

Adequate protein and fiber can promote weight loss because they boost satiety. In addition to lean meats, opt for whole grains, vegetables, and fruits.

Consume Nutrient-Dense Foods

Nutrient-dense foods provide the vitamins and minerals that optimize your overall health. They serve as antioxidants and help drive many of the body’s functions, and you can avoid empty calories. This could mean choosing brown rice over white or snacking on nuts, and seeds instead of reducing the calorie intake from chips, or processed foods. 

Eat In A Calorie Deficit

You’ll be able to lose inner thigh fat when you stay in a calorie deficit or consume fewer calories by engaging in physical activity combined with consuming fewer calories by eating more fruits and vegetables, your body will eventually have to burn fat for energy.

Drink Plenty Of Water

Hydration is important for weight loss.[4] As it enhances muscle function, flushes out unwanted fluids, and keeps electrolyte balance. Drinking water can also help suppress appetite and can ramp up calorie burning.

Other Tips To Lose Thigh Fat 

Prioritize Sleep

Your body operates more smoothly with good rest and recuperation. Adequate and enough sleep can replenish your energy, coordination, and clarity. All of this can bolster your exercises and keep your system working complimentary for weight loss or fat loss. 

Reduce Alcohol Consumption

If you partake in alcoholic beverages, you may want to cut back on how much you consume. Alcohol increases your caloric intake without providing any nutrients and ultimately contributes to weight gain, including your inner thigh fat or overall body fat. 

Stress Management And Mindfulness

A weight loss journey has its ups and downs and you can stay steadfast by utilizing stress management techniques and mindfulness. Meditating and focusing on your tasks can give you the clarity and diligence to complete the regimen.

Consistency With Lower Body Workouts

As you begin the aerobic exercise or cardio exercises, develop a consistent routine instead of random participation. Patterns can help you gauge the required intensity along with the proper recovery period after the workout, resulting in more consistent weight loss.

An improved exercise regimen, balanced diet, and lifestyle habits can help stay in a calorie deficit. After that, you will start to lose inner thigh fat, burn more calories, and body weight overall. 

Thigh exercises can be helpful for total leg strength and fitness, as well as the entire body. It’s important to address how to lose inner thigh fat because the body can easily store excess fat here, but it is harder to shed.

 Additionally, we consider how to lose fat without losing muscle because your body type can influence the action needed to burn calories and fat while maintaining muscle. A loss of muscle mass usually occurs with quick weight loss, so it’s important to lose weight[5] gradually according to a steady regimen.

Benefits Of Losing Thigh Fat 

how to lose thigh fat
Toning the leg muscles is essential for weight loss, reducing overall body fat percentage, and maintaining skeletal function. Photo: Viktoria Ostroushko/Shutterstock

Increased Lower Body Strength

Exercises targeting the lower body can reinforce your lower body strength. Toning the leg muscles is essential for weight loss, reducing overall body fat percentage, and maintaining skeletal function. Less weight can mean a greater ability to carry out weight-bearing tasks in your everyday routines, even as you get older. The thigh muscles[6] are important in this aspect, as they are largely responsible for the bending and flexing, as well as the rotation of the lower body.

Reduce Body Fat

Our major focus is outer and inner thigh fat, but exercising according to a regimen will help you shed thigh fat as well as belly fat, a common culprit. As you experience fat loss, consistent physical activity will result in defined muscles, lean muscle mass, and gain muscle.

Not only will you have a toned and tighter body, but you will also reduce your body fat.[7] It’s difficult to lose weight in just one area, so the magnified fitness will benefit the body in its entirety.

Improved Overall Health

Enhanced lower body strength and reduced body fat are prominent indicators of optimal health and wellness. By boosting your lower extremity strength, your daily activities, such as ascending and descending stairs, can be performed with increased ease.

This enhancement not only bolsters your bone health and skeletal function but also fosters sustained mobility. Preserving this level of mobility allows for the continuation of regular workouts, a critical component in achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight.

This not only shields against metabolic disorders like diabetes and cardiovascular disease but also serves as a defensive barrier against bone-related conditions such as osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.


Additionally, you can inquire about the best fat burner supplements that are suitable for your needs. One supplement is PhenQ, which can be successful for both men and women. We consider how to lose leg fat in men because men have a relatively lower body fat content throughout their lifetime but an earlier risk of cardiovascular disease, making weight loss imperative. 

Equally important is how to lose thigh fat women because fat deposits become more common as estrogen levels decrease over time. Conclusively, commitment to a balanced diet with more fruits and vegetables and regular exercise will benefit both!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is spot reduction possible?

While targeted weight loss may have some effect on specific areas such as the thighs, it’s important to remember that weight loss and metabolic processes impact the entire body. Additionally, the number and size of fat cells also play a role.

Are some workouts dangerous?

It’s crucial to prioritize safety when engaging in workouts, especially if you have a history of knee injury or other lower limb issues. Exercises like lunges can be challenging and potentially risky in such cases, so it’s important to be mindful of any limitations or precautions.

Should I consider liposuction?

It’s generally not recommended to rely solely on liposuction for overall weight loss. Liposuction is a procedure that specifically targets thigh fat removal in certain areas like outer or inner thigh fat, but it does not contribute to comprehensive weight loss efforts. It’s essential to consider a holistic approach to weight management, including a healthy diet and regular exercise, rather than relying solely on surgical interventions like liposuction.

Can specific exercises help in toning specific muscle groups?

While specific exercises can certainly help in strengthening and toning specific muscle groups, it’s important to note that spot reduction of outer or inner thigh fat in those areas is not possible. However, targeted exercises can enhance muscle definition and improve overall body composition.

What are some safe alternatives to intense workouts for individuals with certain health conditions?

For individuals with specific health conditions or limitations, there are often safer alternatives to intense workouts. Low-impact exercises such as swimming, cycling, or yoga can provide effective alternatives that are easier on the joints and muscles while still offering health benefits. It’s always advisable to consult with a healthcare professional or a qualified fitness instructor to determine the best exercise options based on individual circumstances.

+ 7 Sources

EHproject has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We work mostly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure accurate information. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

  1. Goss, A.M. and Gower, B.A. (2012). Insulin sensitivity is associated with thigh adipose tissue distribution in healthy postmenopausal women. Metabolism, [online] 61(12), pp.1817–1823. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.metabol.2012.05.016.
  2. Małgorzata Jeziorek, Szuba, A., Kujawa, K. and Bożena Regulska-Ilow (2022). The Effect of a Low-Carbohydrate, High-Fat Diet versus Moderate-Carbohydrate and Fat Diet on Body Composition in Patients with Lipedema. Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: Targets and Therapy, [online] Volume 15, pp.2545–2561. doi:https://doi.org/10.2147/dmso.s377720.
  3. Jeziorek, M., Szuba, A., Kujawa, K. and Regulska-Ilow, B. (2022). The Effect of a Low-Carbohydrate, High-Fat Diet versus Moderate-Carbohydrate and Fat Diet on Body Composition in Patients with Lipedema. Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: Targets and Therapy, [online] Volume 15, pp.2545–2561. doi:https://doi.org/10.2147/dmso.s377720.
  4. Coratella, G., Tornatore, G., Caccavale, F., Longo, S., Esposito, F. and Cè, E. (2021). The Activation of Gluteal, Thigh, and Lower Back Muscles in Different Squat Variations Performed by Competitive Bodybuilders: Implications for Resistance Training. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(2), p.772. doi:https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020772.
  5. Piaggi, P. (2019). Metabolic Determinants of Weight Gain in Humans. Obesity, [online] 27(5), pp.691–699. doi:https://doi.org/10.1002/oby.22456.
  6. Schwimmer, J.B., Ugalde-Nicalo, P., Welsh, J.A., Angeles, J.E., Cordero, M., Harlow, K.E., Alazraki, A., Durelle, J., Knight-Scott, J., Newton, K.P., Cleeton, R., Knott, C., Konomi, J., Middleton, M.S., Travers, C., Sirlin, C.B., Hernandez, A., Sekkarie, A., McCracken, C. and Vos, M.B. (2019). Effect of a Low Free Sugar Diet vs Usual Diet on Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in Adolescent Boys. JAMA, [online] 321(3), p.256. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2018.20579.
  7. Stookey, J.D., Constant, F., Popkin, B.M. and Gardner, C.D. (2008). Drinking Water Is Associated With Weight Loss in Overweight Dieting Women Independent of Diet and Activity. Obesity, [online] 16(11), pp.2481–2488. doi:https://doi.org/10.1038/oby.2008.409.


Christine is a certified personal trainer and nutritionist with an undergraduate degree from Missouri State University. Her passion is helping others learn how strong and healthy they can become by transforming their daily habits. Christine spends… See More