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How to Best Use (NEAT) to Build Leg Muscles

How do you use non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) to build leg muscles?

I analyzed the measurements from week twelve of my journey during week thirteen. My gains exceeded my expectations except for my legs, which had the smallest increases. The legs are a unique group of muscles. Your lifestyle affects your leg muscles more than any other group of muscles.

A scientific research study conducted in 1992 found regional changes in muscle mass following 17 weeks of bed rest. The study concluded that Isokinetic muscle strength decreased significantly (P < 0.05) in the thigh and calf with no arm loss and rapid recovery during re-ambulation.

There was significant variability in the degree and location of muscle loss during bed rest. Bed rest primarily affects the lower body muscles. This means that your lifestyle outside of the gym affects your leg muscles more than the rest of your muscles.

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How to use standing to build leg muscles

The coronavirus minimized the gains I experienced with my legs. I will admit that I spend most of my time sitting in a chair while working from home. A sedentary lifestyle affects more than fat loss. It also affects muscle gains. I almost overlooked this, but my research pointed it out while I was analyzing my leg results.

One thing you can do to get off of the couch is to buy a podium or use books to elevate your computer so that you can stand while on the computer. It would be best if you also stood watching television or playing video games. Other activities you can do to stand: cook, shower, clean, fold clothes, and wash dishes.

Your legs need to work during the day and your workout to build larger muscles. Standing works the legs, butt, abdominal, and lower back muscles. When you stand, it requires muscles to support the weight of the muscles above them. Your legs must support your stomach, butt, chest, shoulders, neck, and head weight.

If you stand correctly, you perform a vertical plank. You stand correctly by placing your feet shoulder-width apart and slightly bending your knees. Start simple to build up stamina and leg strength. Stand for about 10 minutes each hour and then work up to where you can stand for hours at a time. Do not rush or overdo it because consistency and compliance are more critical than accomplishments.

How to use walking to build leg muscles

Walking is another NEAT activity you can use to build leg muscles during the day. When walking, focus on posture, form, and pace. Power walking is an effective way to work leg muscles. You can walk casually to relax your legs and mind if you squat, lunge, or deadlift.

As long as you stand regularly and for an extended amount of time during the day, you can get away with 30 minutes to one hour of walking each day. Walking is a compound activity that works on your upper body.

When you keep your muscles active, they get healthier and respond to your workout better. Some ways you can walk during the day: house cleaning, picking up the mail, walking around your neighborhood, mowing the grass, and taking out the trash.

 How to use your job to build leg muscles

Now, this is the big one because of the coronavirus. If you are an essential worker, your work may cause you to stand and walk. But if you are like most of us working from home, you will need to find work around the house to keep you on your feet and work your legs. You can use many activities in the house and yard to keep your legs and butt muscles active.

How to put it all together

The most important thing when building leg muscles is staying on your feet. Studies have shown that leg muscles, when not used regularly, shrink. Standing, walking, squatting, and bending during the day maintain leg muscles.

Working out, in addition to NEAT activities, builds leg muscles. Some of the best exercises to build leg muscles are squat, lunge, and deadlift. If you stop performing NEAT activities, your workout will replace your NEAT activities instead of building leg muscles.

Standing and walking do not create leg muscles. But they do something more meaningful. Standing and walking prevent your legs from getting smaller. You must stand and walk during the day to get more from your workout and develop massive legs.


LeBlanc, A. D., Schneider, V.  -S., Evans, H. J., Pientok, C. O. L. E. T. T. E., Rowe, R., & Spector, E. (1992). Regional changes in muscle mass following 17 weeks of bed rest. Journal of applied physiology, 73(5), 2172-2178.

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