Firstly the word ‘tone’ simply means seeing muscle definition. In order to get muscle definition you need to have some muscular development and a low enough body to see the muscles underneath.
I will talk you through the 3 ways in order to ‘tone’ up your body and get ‘toned’ muscles without wasting your time and money on supplements that don’t work and diets that’ll leave you unsatisfied.
- Working the muscles that you want to ‘tone up’ within an exercise programme -
In order to have ‘toned’ muscles you need to work them sufficiently through exercise in order for them to develop in size and strength. The best way to do this is through lifting weights as weight training allows you to work specific muscles through specific exercises to get specific results.
Let’s use the triceps muscle (back of the upper arm) as an example that you would like to ‘tone up’. You would need to be performing exercises that specifically isolate, or heavily involve, the triceps. Some good examples are: tricep dips, tricep pushdowns, push ups and overhead press. By performing these exercises appropriately for an individual safely with good technique and programming you will certainly be giving your triceps a good workout leading to the muscle developing getting bigger and stronger (‘toned’).
- Eating within a calorie deficit to reduce your body fat for the muscles to be visible -
So now that you are exercising and performing applicable and appropriate workouts that are matched towards your specific goals, you need to ensure your body fat is low enough and that you are eating correctly in order for your muscles to be visible.
For some this may not be necessary as your body fat may already be low enough and you simply just need to workout your muscles to build development. However for most people its a matter of reducing your body fat for your hard work to actually be seen and visible. It doesn’t matter how hard you work out and for how hours for months on end if you aren’t eating in a calorie deficit.
In order to achieve a calorie deficit you need to be consistent with the amount of food you eat day to day and assess what is happening to your weight. If you are gaining weight slowly then you are eating in a calorie surplus. If you aren’t gaining or losing weight then you are eating at your maintenance calories. If you are losing weight then you are eating in a calorie deficit. To establish this, it is vital you eat consistently day to day and not vary the amount you eat each day. This is so once you have established which of the above three categories you are you can then adjust accordingly. You won’t be able to adjust accordingly if you eat differently all the time as the food needs to be a consistent variable that you can manipulate to put you into a deficit to start losing body fat.
- Be patient and consistent with the above two -
Yes sorry but unfortunately this is the one that no one wants to hear but its the one that holds true to every single person every single time if you want truly effective results. Don’t think sticking to a workout programme and diet for 4 weeks will get you where you want to be. Realistically its going to be a minimum of 12 weeks (for most people depending on starting position and goal). A few weeks of change wont change years of bad habits and neglect so do this for the long term sustainable results not short term quick temporary fixes.