Is strength training the only way to get toned?
Firm, defined and in good shape. Being toned is a goal for many of us and strength training is both essential and excellent for achieving that goal. But is it the only way?
Variety is the spice of life - and the same goes for fitness. In order to get toned, many make the mistake of believing that the only way to do it is with endurance, high repetitive movements and very little resistance. But strength training alone cannot provide everything our bodies need for high definition - so which other factors have to be taken into consideration in order to see results?
1. Fat torching (with strength training)
Muscles do not go from soft to hard - they shrink or they grow. In order to get optimum results and a toned body, shedding body fat as well as strength training is the best way to tone. Training with a resistance and doing between eight and 12 repetitions is best for most.
On top of this, a reduced calorie intake is required to reduce fat. A good start would be to use a calorie calculator to work out your calorie intake based on body type. This will be based on your gender, body size and age. Make sure your calorie intake is realistic - those with manual jobs or more strenuous lifestyles are likely to require more calories than others.
A nutritionist can help with tips and advice on diet, nutrition and exercise if you’re struggling to calorie-count yourself. Once you’re able to balance your calorie intake in agreement with your bodies exercise regime, then you’ll work towards toning in a more natural way rather than strength training alone.
2. Functional workouts
It’s recommended that you train with weights three to four times a week in order to see best results and include functional training. Don’t simply concentrate on isolated movements using your arms and abs - use your bodyweight, free weights and stability balls to mimic the way our bodies were designed to move and tone all of your body.
3. Incorporate other forms of exercise
All exercise is good for muscle toning - strength training does not have to be the only way. Martial arts, yoga and other sports are all renowned for improving muscle tone and different exercises such as Float Fit or Air Fit at Holmes Place will also speed up calorie burning, fat loss and in turn, toning. Attending our Antigravity Fusion class several times a week can help lose inches. Also, if you find that strength training is becoming monotonous then incorporating other forms of exercise will reduce the boredom of centering on this workout alone alone.
4. Listen to your body
Everyone is individual and nobody knows you better than you, so when striving to tone don’t think that one size fits all. Your unique body will need a personalised goal in order to reach its full potential. Like many things, we can give up easily if we don’t see the results. Toning takes time so make sure you have set a goal and timescale right for you, as well as the right workout and calorie-count for your needs. Lifestyle balance is crucial for this.
How long will it take? Find the answer for 3 common fitness goals.
5. Cardio workouts with resistance training
Cardio workouts exercise and regulate the heart while aiding with reducing calories and burning body fat. Resistance training combined with cardio workouts improve the overall chances of toning. Here are the top machines to help you blast calories.