Muscle toning involves regular exercise that targets specific muscles and gives them the workout they need to become lean and healthy. Completely different from muscle building, which involves weight lifting and “feeding” the muscles to create mass, toning is often accomplished in conjunction with weight loss and can be achieved with a variety of different workouts that include exercises like crunches, lunges, and so on. The obvious benefit to toning is achieving a lean, attractive body, but there are other benefits beyond the obvious.
With toning the muscles comes a reduction of body fat and weight. The reduction of weight on the body’s frame consequently results in improved overall health by benefiting the heart, the joints, and the skeletal system. People with lean bodies have more stamina, increased energy, and more flexibility. Besides feeling better and improving overall health, people with lean bodies also decrease their risk of developing certain diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
Some forms of toning, especially exercises that target the muscles in the abdomen and upper body, can also improve posture. Certain low-impact, weight-bearing exercises performed in a standing position can help tone muscle while strengthening bones, which in the long run improves posture, can reduce the risk of osteoporosis, and may relieve stress to the spinal cord.
In addition to being physically beneficial, muscle toning exercises, especially when combined with cardio and strength building exercises, can also be beneficial to mental health. Research has shown that those who exercise regularly have more energy and reduced stress levels. This translates to not only being healthier, but feeling healthier, a feeling that can boost confidence. Coupled with lower stress levels, this creates a win-win benefit for anyone.
When a person achieves a leaner, healthier body, he or she may also be able to enjoy more experiences. An increase in stamina results in the ability to participate in physical activities such as swimming, dancing, walking, and other sports that may not be possible for someone out of shape. Toning the muscles could potentially improve your golf game, prepare you for a marathon, or cause you to be open to new experiences.
Muscle toning and weight loss is a gradual process that requires regular effort. It is important to engage in exercises using the proper form and technique, which can be difficult for beginners. Consider joining an exercise class that features toning to learn the proper form from a professional fitness instructor. If you have been sedentary for a significant part of your life without much exercise, or have heart problems or other health conditions or concerns, you should consult your doctor before beginning any new exercise regimen. Once you have a clean bill of health, start slow and build your stamina, increasing muscle tone and strength, and in time you will discover the many benefits of toning.