How To Improve Muscle Tone Without Becoming Bulky

Most women who want to improve muscle tone worry that they’ll end up bulky, looking more like the Incredible Hulk, without the green. The bulky look doesn’t work for many men either, unless they want to enter body building competition. The good news is that you can tone up without bulking up and it’s relatively easy. If you’re working with a trainer, he or she will show you how to do that, but for the rest, here are some tips that will help.

You need to lose fat, while building muscle and improving your posture.

Strength training workouts are necessary for building that lean toned appearance, so is fat loss. If you have a layer of fat covering those lean muscles, nobody will be able to see how toned you are. To burn fat, strength training is excellent. Go for multi-joint—compound exercises that work several muscle groups and torch calories. Squats, shoulder presses, pull-ups, deadlifts and bench presses are examples. Exercises that improve your posture can make you look thinner and more toned quickly.

Getting stronger should be your focus.

Strength training is extremely important, no matter what your fitness goal. It’s important for daily living to help prevent accidents and injuries. It’s especially important for seniors who want to maintain independence. You need a full body strength training workout at least twice a week to be at your best, with 48 hours between strength training workouts. Each muscle group should have eight to twelve repetitions.

Keep lean by minimizing the amount of rest you get.

The more strength training sets you do, the more potential for bulkiness, but resting more between sets can actually bulk you up, too. Taking less time to rest between sets can actually reduce the potential for that bulky look. According to one study in 2016, men who rested one minute, compared to those who rested three minutes, showed that those who rested longer developed muscular hypertrophy—bulkier muscles.

  • If you are a woman, hormones prevent that bulky look. In fact, women who build bulky muscles have to work super hard or take supplements in order to get bulky. Doing it naturally is extremely difficult.
  • Your posture plays a big role in getting that lean, defined muscular appearance. Yoga, Pilates, and stretching exercises that work through the entire range of motion can build long lean muscles, but so can making sure your posture is correct.
  • The amount of body fat you have will determine how lean you look. Combine your workout routine with a healthy diet to get the best results.
  • If you’re lifting weights, choose lighter weights, isolation movements and more repetitions for less bulk and a toned look. Your trainer will create a program specifically for your fitness level and goals.

For more information, contact us today at 180 Fitness

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