Home / / How To Lose Inner Thigh Fat (Plus What Not To Do)

How To Lose Inner Thigh Fat (Plus What Not To Do)

By Rachael Attard, Updated Dec 18, 2020
how to lose inner thigh fat

Last Updated MAY 21ST, 2020, 10:01 PM

How do you get rid of the inner thigh fat – that stubborn little area that seems to stick no matter what you do?

I know that the inner thighs are a problem area for many women (myself included) and a very challenging part to slim down, which is why I’ve decided to do a separate post on it.

A lot of you have told me that workouts that you’ve previously done only made things worse and caused your thighs to get bigger instead of making them smaller.

The truth is, there is a lot of misinformation about the right way to lose inner thigh fat, including doing gym machine exercises, as “the best workouts for inner thighs.”

Unfortunately, those exercises do not really work, as you cannot spot reduce fat.

It took me a couple of years to figure out the best ways to slim down legs and especially how to get rid of inner thigh fat.

In this blog post, I’ll explain how to lose slim inner thighs and get leaner and what are the most common mistakes you should avoid making when trying to get rid of inner thigh fat.

WHAT EXACTLY CAUSES INNER THIGH FAT?

When you consume more calories than you burn, your body starts storing those excess calories in the form of fat.

And we cannot really choose where our body is going to store that fat; that’s mainly determined by genetics, gender and our body type.

Most women store excess body fat in their inner thigh, hips and lower belly and that’s closely related to their body type.

Let’s talk a bit more about different body types and how they respond differently to diet and exercise regimes.

DIFFERENT BODY TYPES STORE FAT DIFFERENTLY 

learn your body type get rid of inner thigh fat
Endomorph, mesomorph and ectomorph examples [Khloe Kardashian, Margot Robbie and Elska Hosk- from left to right]

Some women naturally have less body fat and find it easier to lose weight. Those women most likely have an ectomorph body type.

Others may find it quite challenging, especially if they train in a way that’s not suitable for their body type.

And I see that a LOT.

Personal trainers often disregard these differences and train everyone the same way, and that’s not effective.

This is why you end up seeing 2 girls following the same diet and exercise regime and one ending up with much different results than the other one.

There are three main body types (ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph), and if you want to reach your fitness goals and get the best possible results, you need to learn yours.

You may be an endomorph like Kim and Khloe Kardashian or a mesomorph like Gigi Hadid and Margot Robbie, or perhaps you’re an ectomorph like Kendall Jenner and Elsa Hosk.

You can take my Free Body Type Quiz here that will help you determine yours in just a few minutes.

WHY IS INNER THIGH FAT SO HARD TO LOSE 

lose body fat fast

As I mentioned previously, the inner thigh area is one of the most stubborn areas for women when it comes to fat loss.

Even ectomorphs, who are naturally lean and slim, may not know how to lose fat in from inner thighs or know how to do it properly.

One of the most common mistakes I see is women trying to spot reduce inner thigh fat, which is impossible.

But, what does ‘‘spot reducing fat’‘ exactly mean?

Let’s say I want to lose belly fat. So, I start doing 1000 crunches a day, focusing all my energy on this body part. Will I lose belly fat and get those abs? Sadly, no. We cannot choose where we lose fat.

And most women usually find it easier to lose upper body fat than thigh or belly fat.

So, if you want to lose inner thigh fat, you’ll have to lose body fat all over.

What’s the best and quickest way to reduce body fat? Eating a healthy diet at a calorie deficit, followed by cardio and resistance training that will help you slim inner thighs down without adding extra muscle bulk.

We’ll cover each part, below.

HOW TO GET RID OF THE INNER THIGH FAT

1. ADJUST YOUR DIET FOR MAXIMUM FAT LOSS

best diet for losing inner thigh fat

If you exercise, but constantly eat crappy food, you’re not very likely to get great results.

Your body needs a well-balanced diet with lots of fruits and veggies, lean protein, good fats and fiber.

You should avoid alcohol, sugar (in any form), processed food, baked goods, deep-fried foods, etc.

If you want to lose inner thigh fat fast and get leaner, you really need to change your diet and stick to it.

WHAT’S THE BEST DIET FOR LOSING INNER THIGH FAT? 

I would advise you to eat at a slight calorie deficit and to follow a low carb diet for the quickest results.

When we need energy, our body starts burning carbs first, followed by protein and fat. So, if you eat a low carb diet and there are not enough carbs, your body will start to burn more fat and protein.

This essentially means you’ll burn more fat on a low carb diet, using it as a primary source of energy.

Also, if you want to lose weight and reduce body fat, you should be in a slight calorie deficit. And I mean slight: 200-500 calories.

But, keep in mind that any form of dieting and calorie restriction can potentially slow down your metabolism, so start with a small calorie deficit.

If you starve yourself and eat too little, you’ll just slow down your metabolism too much, and you won’t lose weight.

So, if you don’t know how to calculate your daily calorie intake, I have a blog post that will help you learn exactly how many calories you need here.

And if you’re not sure where to start, you can download my 7 Day Meal Plan for free and that will help you kick start your weight loss.

2. AVOID EXERCISES THAT CAN MAKE YOUR INNER THIGHS BIGGER

I see a lot of women that are trying to lose fat from their thighs doing precisely what they should not in term of workouts.

Working to substantially increase muscle size on your thighs (and especially if you don’t lose fat) will ultimately make your legs looks bigger…which is not your goal.

Again, there is nothing wrong with increasing muscle size on your legs by lifting heavy weights for example, but this will not get rid of the fat on your thighs.

2.1 SKIP CERTAIN TYPES OF RESISTANCE TRAINING THAT CAN MAKE YOUR THIGHS BIGGER

I see a lot of women targeting their inner thighs with resistance training (i.e. that weird inner thigh machine at the gym, sumo squats, etc.). Unfortunately, this won’t slim down your inner thigh area.

It will focus on working that inner thigh muscle and may make it bigger in size, but it won’t get rid of the fat.

In fact, it could just make this area end up looking bigger. If you add some muscle – but don’t really lose fat – then you’ll end up wondering why your legs are getting bigger from working out.

In addition, unless you want to make your thighs bigger, I would avoid workouts that heavily target your quads, such as the following:

RELATED: HOW TO SLIM DOWN MUSCULAR THIGHS

lose thigh fat what not to do

RELATED: HOW TO SLIM DOWN MUSCULAR THIGHS

EXERCISES THAT MIGHT MAKE YOUR (INNER) THIGHS BIGGER:

  • Squats and all squat variations
  • Lunges
  • Weighted leg machines
  • CrossFit
  • HIIT routines that heavily target your legs

Don’t get me wrong – these are awesome workouts – but I know that a lot of women actually have issues with muscular thighs and that is what we are trying to avoid here.

2.2 AVOID SOME TYPES OF CARDIO THAT CAN BULK UP YOUR THIGHS 

Cycling, the elliptical, stair master, stair or uphill running, etc. are all great cardio workouts. They increase your cardiovascular fitness and burn lots of calories.

But they don’t slim down your legs as walking or running, and they won’t necessarily help you get rid of inner thigh fat.

A lot of these types of cardio will actually build muscle (especially if you’re an endomorph) so your legs may get bigger, rather than slimmer.

3. DO THE RIGHT TYPE OF WORKOUTS FOR INNER THIGHS

Yes, there are still workouts you can do that will tone up your whole body, including your thighs.

And again, I suggest you test some things and different workouts for yourself and your body type and see what fits you best. To start, below I have recommended exercises for slimming inner thigh area that worked on the majority of the girls I trained (including myself).

BEST EXERCISE TO GET LOSE INNER THIGH FAT FAST

best exercises for losing inner thigh fat

If you want to burn inner thigh fat fast, you need to combine effective cardio with the right type of resistance training.

3.1 DO MORE LOW-INTENSITY CARDIO 

In all my experience, the best exercise for getting rid of inner thigh fat and getting lean legs, in general, is WALKING.

Not running, swimming, cycling, elliptical, dancing, etc.

DOES WALKING REDUCE INNER THIGH FAT?

I know – it sounds too simple, right? But do not underestimate its power.

Walking is the absolute best exercise for getting rid of overall excess fat, including your inner thighs.

However, you do need to do a lot of walking. By a lot, I mean 10,000 steps per day (or 10kms, if you can!) at least.

I know this sounds time-consuming, but the 10,000 steps don’t need to be done all at once.

You can accumulate these steps during the day. And remember – it’s just walking!

My advice is to start each morning with a 5km walk so a lot of your walking is already done for the day. Then try to do as much walking as you can throughout the day.

Get up from your desk and walk around the office, go outside for lunch, meet with friends for a walk, walk home from work or walk to the bus/train – do everything you can to get in those extra steps!

Bonus tip: In addition to walking, swimming is actually a great form of cardio that can help with slimming your legs. It won’t target inner thigh fat as well as walking, but it can be a great alternative.

RELATED POST: HOW TO GET LEAN LEGS: WHY YOU NEED CARDIO

IS RUNNING GOOD FOR REDUCING INNER THIGH FAT?

Running is a great workout and will help you slim down all over as it burns LOTS of calories.

But it doesn’t really get the same results as walking, especially for some body types.

Some endomorph women can get bigger legs from running because running actually builds leg muscle.

Generally speaking, long-distance running will not bulk up your legs as much as sprinting, for sure. But again, it is very individual, so pay attention to how your body responds to running.

If you know this applies to you and growing thigh muscle is not one of your fitness goals, it might be best to avoid running and stick to power walking instead.

3.2 FOCUS ON THE RIGHT TYPE OF RESISTANCE TRAINING (THAT WON’T MAKE YOUR INNER THIGHS BIGGER)

Resistance training doesn’t exactly get rid of inner thigh fat. Resistance training will tone up your body, and it will help you lose weight faster.

Doing the right kind of resistance training will keep you lean and toned without adding too much muscle bulk, so you won’t end up skinny fat after losing weight.

Any type of resistance training is great. BUT, if you are worried about your legs getting bigger with resistance training, or you are trying to reduce the size of your legs, you need to be careful with the type of exercises that you do.

Doing the type of workouts on my blog is a great start as I have designed them all to tone up without making you bulky.

EXAMPLE WORKOUT FOR BURNING INNER THIGH AREA

RELATED POST: HOW TO LIFT WEIGHTS WITHOUT GETTING BULKY

THE ULTIMATE PROGRAM FOR SLIMMING DOWN YOUR LEGS & LOSING INNER THIGH FAT 

I have designed my 3 Steps to Lean Legs Program to help you get rid of the inner thigh fat without building too much muscle. 

These exercises are especially focused on slimming your thighs and will help you lose inner thigh fat.

They will also help you tone up your entire body without getting bulky – through carefully planned resistance training.

Check out the results :)

best program for slimming down your thighs

My program has 3 different versions, one for each body type. That way, you can be sure you’ll get the best possible results. 

It combines cardio with resistance training, and it has a complete 8-week meal plan.

Also, the resistance training part of my program now has FULL-LENGTH videos that you can follow from warm up to cool down.

To find out more about my 3 Steps to Lean Legs program, click the link below:

https://www.rachaelattard.com/skinny-legs-ebook/

To find out more about my FULL-LENGTH VIDEOS, follow this link: 

https://www.rachaelattard.com/lean-legs-video-course/

Love,

Rachael xx

Picture of Rachael

Rachael is an Australian born certified personal trainer and nutritionist who holds a Bachelor degree in Science.

After struggling for years to find an exercise and diet program that is tailored to women striving for lean and toned body with no bulk she designed her Lean Legs Program. This program is tailored to each body type and focused on helping women get toned but feminine bodies, without getting bulky.

Her mission is to empower women and help them stay in shape in a healthy and balanced way.

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95 comments on “How To Lose Inner Thigh Fat (Plus What Not To Do)”

    Akshaya says:

    Yes, exactly ..Even I felt that walking is best for reducing thigh fat ..I have experienced it ..and skipping made my thighs bulkier..becoz my body type is endomorpic and thankyou so much for your kind information .

      Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,

      We’re glad that Rachael was able to help and inspire you in your fitness journey! :) If you have more questions, feel free to email us at info@rachaelattard.com

      Love,
      Len

    Bree says:

    Hi! I am 15 years old and since doing dance and gymnastics plus softball as a young child and now cheer and softball I have always had bigger legs. I have always been skinny everywhere else but I am just so muscular in my thighs. As I’m growing in age and now a teenager my thighs are starting to bother me. I love having muscular thighs but it seems that the little extra fat with them is making it look unproportioned with my hips and small stomach. I know my legs are prone to gaining muscle in general but I would like to target the fat to make my legs more slim while still being the toned muscle I like. What kinds of exercises do you recommend I should be doing? Power walking? Jogging? I’m just so confused and would love your help!

      Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,
      Thank you for reaching out! :)

      ​Since you are 15 years old, your body is still going through a lot of transformations so ​if you want to lose weight, it’s best you talk to your parents so they can get you an appointment with a specialist. A nutritionist can advise you on your nutrition and workouts so that you can achieve the results you wish in a healthy way that suits your age.
      Wishing you the best of luck! xx

      Love,
      Len

    amy says:

    hi! do planks and plank related workouts come under lighter resistant training?

    Anna says:

    Hey there! I just want to start off by saying that you have helped with my confidence so much, and I wanted to thank you. I’ve lost a lot of weight, and I want to focus on gaining lean muscle and toning up. I’m also a mesomorph, but I was curious as to how to gain just a little bit of muscle on my outer thighs. I find that when I do gain muscle on my things by high-intensity running and things like that, it’s more of my upper/inner thigh that gets bigger. Also, should I be tracking my calories when trying to achieve these goals for my body? I lost a whole lot of weight and was on a pretty extreme calorie deficit for a while, but now that I’m trying to gain a little muscle/tone up, I’m wondering if tracking my calories is still necessary. I know that I wouldn’t overeat or eat too unhealthy because I have a pretty small appetite and ate super clean while trying to lose weight, so I’m just wondering if/how many calories I should eat. Thank you so much.

      Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,

      Thanks for reaching out!

      Through a combination of light resistance exercises and light intensity cardio such a power walking, you’ll be able to achieve your goal of gaining lean muscle without unwanted bulkiness. We still recommend that you follow your ideal daily calorie intake and macros break down for your body type to get faster results. Here are some general guidelines for the mesomorph body type. :)

      If you need more help or tips, feel free to reach out to us at info@rachaelattard.com

      Love,
      Len

    Lily Thompson says:

    Hi there! I have a question. So , I hate running but so love the peloton. I’m a mesomorph and get tone very quickly so I heard to not do the peloton as much. But it’s really helped me cut down on the thing fat that’s accumulated. Also I like Lily Sabri’s thigh slimmer exercises but air wonder if they are too heavy for me. Can you check it out. Thank you

      Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,

      Since you’re a mesomorph, it should be fine if you follow her workouts.

      If you are a mesomorph, you may or may not be able to get away with using the peloton. Some mesomorphs are OK with it, while others aren’t. However, either way, I would still only do it 1-2 times per week maximum because overdoing it with cycling will most likely make your legs bigger. :)

      I hope that helps. xx

      Love,
      Len

    Joanie G. says:

    Hi there!

    So quick question (with some background explanation): I used to have have slim legs when I was a young teenager, but due to having a concussion at age 16, I experienced a good bit of weight gain, and from there to age 18-19 I always had big legs even though I cut out all carbs and worked out doing walking videos and some weighted lunges faithfully. Add to this that my menstrual cycle had always been pretty irregular ever since age 13
    When I was 19, I implemented drastically smaller portion sizes, continued doing a 15-minute power-walking video most days, and also added tons of body weight/air squats. I finally lost a lot weight and got thin legs, but it was at the sacrifice of my health and I got TOO thin.
    So, I started purposefully gaining weight back very slowly, and I had to eat a TON of carbs and fats and start eating normal portion sizes. And by switching out my “tons of air squats” for 2 sets of 10 weighted lunges and two sets of 15-20 weighted squats, I never got “fat,” I never got “bulky”— I kept my slim and got very strong. I fit into my slim jeans and my legs were skinny. On top of that, my menstrual health became perfect. I felt the most healthy, fit, strong and good in my skin that I’d ever felt. Thanking the Lord!!
    Fast forward about a year, and I got sick with the flu and couldn’t workout like I’d been doing. Needed to eat *a lot* still to keep my cycle, but even when I finally got back up to doing weights and walking like I’d done before, my legs and hips were no longer thin and stayed that way. So I ditched the weights and did lots of hiit and kept walking, and that’s helped some, but my legs feel swollen, my quads overly developed, and I can’t wear my jeans. I don’t need to *lose weight*, but I need to lose fat without sacrificing carbs so I keep my cycle. But I’d really, really like to fit into my jeans again and be slim and strong like I was last year.
    Sorry for the blurb!! I just thought if I asked a Q you should no my backstory. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Thanks so much.

      Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,

      Usually, I find that there are a few other potential reasons for not getting results:

      1. If you have ever done any super low-calorie diets in the past, this will affect your metabolism and make it harder for you to lose weight. And on the other end of the scale, binge eating prevents you from getting results too. I’m not sure if either of these situations applies to you, but it’s one thing to take into consideration.

      2. Sometimes weight loss isn’t just about calories in and calories out. Your body is a lot more complicated. Any issues with gut health, hormones, thyroid, cortisol, or nutrient deficiencies can actually make a HUGE difference to your weight so if you want, you can also get a consultation with a specialist or a nutritnionist just to make sure. :)

      Following the right type of exercises and diet for your body type will definitely help you achieve your goals so we could start with that. Feel free to take Rachael’s body type quiz and email the results to info@rachaelattard.com so we could provide some guidelines for you. But like a said, you should also take the things that I’ve mentioned above into consideration.

      Love,
      Len

    Pat says:

    After losing around 25 pounds my inner thighs have excessive skin hanging between my thighs. Is there anything to help this besides surgery.?

      Len - Lean Legs Support says:

      Hi lovely,

      Thanks for reaching out! <3

      Light-resistance workouts could help tone your legs and improve the appearance of sagged skin but if you're not really comfortable with them, surgeries could help too

      Love,
      Len

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