It's Trainer Tip Tuesday and I'm going for some real talk...there is no such thing as "TONING". Please stop using that word! The number of women I have telling me they “don’t want to build muscle and just want to be toned" is crazy. I have news for you…and it's gonna be hard to hear...toning is a misnomer, it doesn't mean what you think it means.
Muscles grow or muscles get smaller. You gain fat, or you lose fat. It is simple.
“Toning” implies losing enough fat so you can see muscle definition or as many people refer to it as “tone.” In order to do that, you have to build some muscle! Guess what?? Muscle helps to burn fat and that helps you to achieve the look you are going for. You are not going to "look like a bodybuilder" just because you lift weights. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Toning isn't a thing.
Even worse, in this scenario is that there are trainers marketing themselves as “toning experts”. These trainers have their clients doing extremely high reps with very little weight…promising their clients that this will help them “tone up.” There are also those Google experts on social media telling you that the key to toning and fat loss is lots of cardio and high reps with light weights. This is just wrong. High reps will build muscle endurance and for a total newbie, may yield some gains. But, it is a great way to get an overuse, repetitive motion injury. People get fooled because they “feel the burn” performing 100s of reps. Feeling a burn has little to do with building muscle and losing fat. That is just your body producing lactic acid and getting overly fatigued. Sure you'll burn calories, but there are many more effective ways of doing the exact same thing without risking injury, and at the same time getting you closer to the look you want!
People that have the idea that they want muscle tone, need to build muscle and lose fat. Simple. Lift heavy things, burn off unwanted and excess fat. If a trainer tells you that, he or she can help you tone up and that you will not have to put on muscle to do so, RUN. Run far far away and find another trainer because that one is selling snake oil and lies.
If you want to tone, you need a program that will build muscle. Next, lose the fat and you will look defined and toned. Diet is key here. Eating at a surplus to gain muscle and at a deficit to lose fat to reveal the muscle "tone" underneath. Forget the “toning” programs and start lifting heavier weights.