If you thought muscle toning only belongs in the vocabulary of bodybuilders and fitness junkies to get those bulging biceps and triceps, then you are living with an incorrect notion of what muscle toning is really all about. Massive bulging biceps will likely happen only when you are training specifically for it and lifting extremely heavy weights.
So before we get down to the exercises that will help you develop well-toned muscles, let us take a moment to understand what muscle toning actually does to our body and why it is a good fitness and exercise goal to have.
Simply put, toning your muscles means working out in such a way that you attain muscles that are strong and well defined as opposed to just increasing bulk.
Among the health and fitness benefits of doing muscle toning exercises is weight control as toned muscles tend to have a relatively higher rate of metabolism. Since it involves lifting weights, muscle toning exercises are useful to strengthen bones and build bone density. It can also help correct muscle imbalance and improve your posture.
Now we get to the ‘how’ part of muscle toning. Muscle toning exercises are typically a mix of strength training by doing basic weightlifting and calorie or fat burning workouts that define the muscles by getting rid of the fat covering them.
Here are a few muscle toning exercises that you can include in your workout for developing lean, well toned muscles and a strong, healthy physique.
Squats are one of the basic exercises that work really well for muscle toning because it engages some of the largest muscles in your body. It also helps you burn quite a lot of calories. Doing squats works your entire lower body and core muscles, including calf, hamstrings, thigh, abs and glutes. You should attempt to do three sets of 20 repetitions each.
To do the single leg deadlift you will need a pair of light to moderate weight dumbbells. This exercise will not only pressurise and work your arm and leg muscles, it will also build stability and improve your body balance ability. Aim for 10 – 12 repetitions on each side.
Other exercises that you can do using dumbbells are the standing overhead dumbbell press and dumbbell rows.
Pull ups is an intense strength training workout that activates your core and upper body muscles. In particular doing pull ups is helpful to strengthen and tone your shoulder, arm and back muscles.
Working out with resistance bands while doing your basic floor exercises is useful for toning and defining smaller muscle groups. It also allows you to vary and have a wider range of motion.
Technique is equally important while performing muscle toning exercises, especially if you are using any kind of equipment as an aid. Ideally before you begin any muscle toning program, it is better that you consult your gym instructor or a fitness expert who can help you put together a structured muscle toning exercise plan, that is designed to suit your body and achieve the desired results.
Proteins are the building blocks for muscles. If you follow a protein rich diet while exercising to tone your muscles, take care to regulate your protein intake. Consult your trainer or nutritionist to draw up a proper diet plan that will complement your workout to attain your goal of developing well-toned muscles.
Like you would need to rely on a fitness expert to meet your goal of flaunting toned muscles, you also need expert help to be financially prepared to deal with a health-related eventuality. Making sure you have a health insurance plan in place can protect your finances and help you deal with a medical emergency without dipping into your retirement savings and other investments.
It is advisable to go in for a comprehensive health insurance policy that will give you maximum benefits such as cashless hospitalisation cover at network hospitals, 24x7 call assistance and lifetime renewal. Health insurance can cover your pre and post hospitalisation expenses as well as protect your finances during critical illness. Plans can be compared and purchased online at your convenience. Ensure that you buy a health cover only from a reputed health insurance company and be rest assured that you have taken the right decision to cover you and your family’s health.
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