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Plan your weekly workouts to include strength, aerobic and anaerobic exercises.
Total-body toning and fat burning result from building lean muscle mass while reducing body-fat percentage through a combination of caloric restriction and exercise. This cannot be achieved through one process alone. Your workout plan requires exercises that burn fat and others that tone muscles. Following a healthy diet plan in combination with strength, aerobic and anaerobic training will help you tone your muscles and lose fat.
Create a Caloric Deficit
Even a great workout regime can prove futile without focusing on the quality of the food you eat and how much you are eating. You need to burn more calories than you consume to lose weight. Drink lots of water to stay hydrated and avoid sugary beverages. Eating fiber-rich foods such as vegetables and fruit will help fill you up with minimal calories, and consuming a lean, protein-rich diet will keep you fuller for longer.
Strength Training to Tone Muscles
When total-body toning is the goal, a workout needs to include all of the major muscle groups in the body. Resistance training incorporating weights or using body weight is essential to help build lean muscle, burn more calories at rest and lose more weight. For toning rather than bulking, pick lighter weights and add more reps. According to the Mayo Clinic, a single set of 12 repetitions can build muscle tone using a weight heavy enough so that the last repetition leaves your muscles completely fatigued. Tone all of your major muscles by completing a circuit of deadlifts, chest presses, lat pulldowns, front squats, planks, triceps kickbacks, shoulder overhead presses, calf raises, bicep curls and bent-over rows.
Aerobic Training for Weight Loss
According to the American Council on Exercise, aerobic training is more effective for weight loss than resistance training. Including aerobic exercise as part of your weekly fitness regime will help you burn more calories to lose more weight. According to the Mayo Clinic, there is no advantage to longer versus shorter sessions of aerobic activity. Moving as often as possible is key with a minimum of 150 minutes of activity per week. Brisk walking, jogging, stair climbing and swimming are examples of aerobic exercises.
Anaerobic Training for Toning
Anaerobic, high-intensity interval training is an effective approach to building lean muscle, as it burns more calories and recruits type II muscle fibers that are responsible for muscle definition. Anaerobic exercise is training without the presence of oxygen and involves short bursts of intense activity interspersed with short rest periods. HIIT can be performed with weights, with body weight alone or both. Start with longer rest than work periods. For example, include 15-second bursts of activity and 30-second rest periods between exercises such as burpees, mountain climbers, kettle bell swings, dumbbell renegade rows, sprints and jumping lunges. HIIT training is challenging to the musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems; complement HIIT sessions by doing strength training and aerobic exercise on your off days to ensure a safe and well-rounded workout program.
Warm-Up and Cooldown
Whether you are starting a strength, aerobic or anaerobic HIIT workout, begin every workout with a warm-up and end it with a cooldown to minimize injury risk. According to The American College of Sports Medicine, muscle strains, tendinitis and overuse injuries can be reduced with an effective warm-up and cooldown routine before and after each workout. Spend about 10 minutes warming up and cooling down with a combination of cardiovascular activity including muscle-specific stretching to increase your body's flexibility and elasticity.