It’s very important to incorporate exercise into your new healthy lifestyle.
Not only will you lose weight quicker, but many studies have shown that those who exercise are far more likely to maintain their new weight than those who rely on diet alone.
However, it’s also important to keep the tone, ensuring that you build lean muscle and keep your body looking good while you burn calories.
Lean muscle also contributes to calorie burn even when you’re not working out, so now you have lots of good reasons to try some of these toning exercises designed for your arms, legs, and abs!
Before You Start
Before your toning routine, perform some simple stretches.
Start by raising your arms out to the sides and then lift them up over your head a few times; then stand on one leg and bring your other foot up to your bottom, grabbing your ankle to really pull it in.
After a few of those on both sides, twist your waist to stretch your back, then swing your arms around your body to loosen them up.
You should then do a quick warm-up routine; march in place with exaggerated arm movements for a minute, then bring it up to a faster pace and jog on the spot for another minute.
Finish off your warm-up with a minute of jumping jacks.
Now you’re ready to begin your routine; try to do it three times each week, on non-consecutive days, and for each exercise, do two sets of 10 to 15 reps (or 10 to 15 on each side if appropriate) with a 30-second rest in between sets.
Remember not to rush the moves; take your time to get them right and really feel them working your muscles, and after completing your routine, you should cool down with some more stretches.
To do these exercises, you will need two sets of dumbbells – one set of 3-5lb weights and one set of 8-10lb weights.
1. Overhead Triceps Extension
Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
Hold the light dumbbell in your right hand and extend it straight up to the sky. Support your elbow with your left hand to prevent it from flaring out and weakening the move.
Bend your right elbow and lower the dumbbell behind your head, then press back up to the start position. Do all your reps on this side, then repeat on the opposite side. Use the heavier dumbbell if you want to make it harder.
2. Single Arm Lateral Raise
Get into a push-up position on your knees and place your hands directly beneath your shoulders with a light dumbbell in your left hand.
Engaging your abs to stabilize your torso, raise your left arm straight out to the side, parallel to the floor. Hold for a second, then slowly lower to the start, and then repeat.
Do all your reps, then switch sides.
3. Hammer Bicep Curl
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, arms at your sides, a heavy dumbbell in each hand, and palms facing in. Bend your left arm to 90 degrees, dumbbell vertical.
Hold that position as you bend your right arm and curl the dumbbell to your shoulder, keeping your elbow at your side.
Complete all the reps, then lower both arms, swap so that the right arm is stationary at 90 degrees, and do the reps with the left hand.
1. Plié Heel Raise
Embrace your inner ballerina with this move; stand with your feet wide apart, toes and knees turned out as you lower down into a plié squat, keeping your knees above your ankles and with your arms extended out to the sides.
If you need help balancing, hold onto a chair. Keep your abs engaged in the squat, and lift your heels off the floor for a second before lowering them. Do this move 10 times, rest, and repeat.
2. The Switch Jump
Stand with your feet hip-width apart with your arms at your sides. Lunge back with your right leg, lift your chest, and press into your left heel.
Reach your fingertips toward your left toes and bend your left knee 90 degrees. Hold this position for a second, then repeat. Do 10 reps on each side, alternating sides as you jump.
3. The Kneeling Side Kick
Kneel on the floor and balance on your left knee, with your left hand on the floor directly under your left shoulder.
Extend your right leg out to the side, with your toes touching the floor and your right fingertips behind your head. Keeping your right leg straight, kick it forward at hip height, flex your right foot and hold it for a second.
Do 12 reps, switch sides, and repeat.
1. The Donkey Kick Plank
Start in a forearm plank position, with your elbows directly beneath your shoulders and with your forearms on the floor. Keep your left toe touching the floor and lift your right leg up so that it’s in line with your spine.
Pull your right knee towards your right tricep, hold this position for a beat and then kick your leg up and back like a donkey so that the sole of your shoe is facing the sky. Switch legs and do 10 to 15 reps on each side.
2. The Side Plank Kick
Lie down on your side with straight legs, lift yourself up onto your elbow and place all of your weight on your forearm.
Raise your hips away from the floor and kick your top leg as high as possible. Do 10 to 15 reps on each side.
3. The Leg Opener
Start by lying down on your back with your legs together and straight up in the air over your hips, making a 90-degree angle to the floor.
Move your legs apart to create a V-shape while crunching forward and reaching your arms forward between your legs. Do 10 to 15 reps.
Now, with these nine moves, you have your own toning routine for your arms, legs, and abs, and while they may seem a little complicated at first, you’ll be able to do them without thinking about it in no time!
What’s more, you can do them in the comfort of your own home – Just put on some music and work out to the beat of your favorite songs.
What do you think of these exercises? We hope you’re excited to try them out as part of your exercise routine; please let us know if you have any comments, we would love to hear from you!