Maximize Your Muscle Tone
When people do strength training, they are doing it for one of two reasons. They can be concentrating on bulking up their muscles, or they can be focused on getting well-toned, leaner muscles. How can one tell the difference? After all, they seem to work in the same principle, which is to use weights in giving pressure and stimulus to the various muscles of the body. There is a difference, and once you understand how muscle toning is achieved, you will find that it is relatively easy to do even at home. All you need will be to get the appropriate weights and follow simple instructions.
First, understand that muscle toning or conditioning happens when the muscles are exposed to light weights done over several reps. Light weights are generally those that are 5 to 10 pounds or close to that. Anything higher than that is usually not necessary for standard toning. So the key to remember if you want to tone your muscles is to use light weights, combined with a higher rep count, usually in at least three sets. For example, you can crunch a dumbbell weighing three pounds twenty times using your right arm, then give your arm some rest, and repeat the process for two more sets.
Next, know that muscles need time to rest. If you do strength training to tone your muscles, be sure to have a one-day interval between workout sessions. This is because the muscles need time to recuperate and rebuild. If you strain them too much by giving working them too much too often, you risk injury. That is why training programs in gyms and clubs usually alternate strength training days with cardiovascular exercise days, giving the strained muscles time to revive and repair themselves. This is crucial in getting the results you want.
Lastly, know that there is a right and wrong way to pump your muscles. If you are working out at home and have had no experience with a personal trainer, by all means, do some research. Fitness magazines and many online sites are full of illustrations about the correct way to hold a dumbbell or a medicine ball, and you can follow them easily. But if you want to be even more sure, check for sample videos of how to do them properly. You need to know that if you do not hold the weights properly, you also risk damage to your muscles and sometimes even to your joints. As such the importance of proper form in exercise cannot be overemphasized.
Once you understand these simple tips to tone your muscles effectively, you will be able to enjoy many months and years developing a firm, lean and muscular body. On a side note, when you have toned muscles, you can also be assured of added calorie-burning even when you are not moving. Now, isn’t that a good enough perk to encourage you to get on with lightweight strength training?