Skinny legs and a big belly? You could be in big trouble

skinny legs big belly

Do you have skinny legs and a big belly?

Do you want to know how to increase muscle mass in your legs?

If you said yes to the first question, bad news. If you do have skinny legs and a big belly, you could be in serious trouble.

However, it’s not too late! You can lose your chicken legs while saving your life.

Skinny legs big belly? Chicken legs?

“My legs are skinny but my stomach is big.”

When someone has an upper-body, bulging arms, chest, and shoulders so big that it looks disproportionate to their legs, we call them chicken legs.

You don’t have to have a muscled upper body to be called chicken legs. You can also have a fat body with skinny legs and be called chicken legs.

What these muscle-bound gym rats need to do is to focus on their quads and glutes. Which can be hard because I’m pretty sure they hate doing leg workouts. Hence, they have chicken legs.

However, for you with skinny legs and a big belly, you don’t need to focus on the squat machines.  

No, sorry, but it’s harder than just going all out on the squat rack. The hardest thing for someone with skinny legs and a big belly is watching their diet. 

To reduce your pot belly, you need to go on a calorie deficit. That means you have to watch what you are eating every day. 

Anyone can go ham on the squat rack, but not everyone can watch their diet religiously.

When you have your diet in check, then you can go crazy on the racks.

A must for skinny-legged, big-bellied individuals

Our goal here is to reduce the size of your stomach while gaining muscles on your legs. Easier said than done.

So, you should start by reducing your spare tire first. When you decrease the size of your belly, you are potentially avoiding risks from major diseases— major bonus.

Stomach fat can kill you. You have two types of fat in your stomach, and one is just a nuisance and an unnecessary burden. However, the other kind of fat is slowly poisoning you.

Read the article below to know more what causes belly fat and why you should not ignore it:

Now you know that having a big belly can be detrimental to your health, it’s time to destroy the fat.

Avoid sugar

avoid sugar

If you are still reading, then I know you are dead serious about your big belly. The following are foods you need to avoid to reduce the size of your midsection.

You can start your healthy journey by avoiding those empty calories called sugar. Sugar, in high amounts, can have a damaging effect on your health. 

Eating high amounts of sugar can lead to diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and many others.

[source: Controversies about sugars: results from systematic reviews and meta-analyses on obesity, cardiometabolic disease and diabetes]

Eat good fats, avoid bad fats

good fats

Instead of sugar, concentrate on eating good fats. Types of good fats are polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats. 

The type of fat you should limit is saturated fats. Eating saturated fats is not at all bad for you; however, it’s good to limit your intake — uncertainties with the old and the new studies.

Saturated fat has been labeled as the source of heart diseases for a long time. New studies suggest that this is not the case.

In a study by Oakland Research Institute, shows that there isn’t enough evidence to conclude that saturated fat increases heart diseases.

[source: Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease.]



To further reduce your pot belly, you should burn off the fat by doing a little bit of cardio. You can pick any cardio you want as long as you are hitting your fat-burning zone. 

How do you know your fat-burning zone? Well, you can use our calculators. 

Firstly, find your safe maximum heart rate by going to our maximum heart rate calculator.

Once you know your MHR, head on over to our fat burning zone calculator, there you will find your ideal fat burning heart rate.

My favorite cardio at the moment is shadowboxing. It has less impact on my knee joints, which helps prevent an early knee replacement. 

You see, my knee is shot to bits from overtraining and playing basketball. Listen to your body when it’s telling you something. When something is in pain, don’t push through it and be a hero.

All you’ll get are strains, pains, and a long lay off from training. Lack of training can make you “rusty.”

How do you do, shadowboxing? Why it’s called shadowboxing, I do not know. All I know is, it helps with boxing muscle memory, and it’s great cardio.

How I learned to shadowbox was watching others do it when I was young as 10. You also need to know the basics of jabs and hooks. However, we will not get into that right now. 

You can head to this channel to learn the basics. It’s good to learn the fundamentals. 

Once you know how to stop throwing arm punches, then you can start shadowboxing to help ingrain what you learned into your muscles.

You don’t need any fancy equipment to start shadowboxing. All you need is space and some music. You might consider having an interval timer app like what I’m using. 

Now, you don’t have to shadowbox for your cardio. You can walk, jog, run, or swim. Totally up to you. You can also check out our extensive list of exercises to lose belly fat below:

Train your legs


You’ll be focusing on your lower body to build your strength and muscles. The best exercises for these are squats.

Ah, the squats. This exercise will build up your quads. Having bigger quads can help fill up your tight short shorts.

Squats are relatively easy to do. You don’t necessarily need weights to perform this type of exercise. 

If you are just starting, it’s ideal to use your body weight. This will reduce any chance of injury due to overbearing.

Trust me, I still workout using my body weight, and I still get DOMS. DOMS stands for delayed onset muscle soreness. To further explain DOMS, after a day of excellent leg session, you’ll find that the following day, you could barely walk. Walking down the stairs where you regularly hop every step has become challenging for the next few days.

DOMS happens when your muscles are not accustomed to a type of exercise. So, if you’ve been doing squats for a whole month without changing your routine, you may not feel sore the next day after a bout of strenuous workouts.

[source: Muscle tenderness from exercise: mechanisms?


I have skinny legs but fat stomach.

If you do have skinny arms and legs but a big stomach, I think it’s time to take a look at your health. The size of your gut is a good indication of your current wellness.

Watching what you are eating is an excellent start to help get rid of your big mac. It’s also crucial to start working out your legs to help build muscles. 

However, you may have an underlying cause of your skinny legs. Disease such as Cushing disease should be ruled out before you pursue any diet and workout regime.