My Beef with the Word “TONE”
"How do I tone my abs?"
"Can you give me a good toning exercise for my arms?"
"I’d really like to tone *body part* for *event*, how can I do this?"
These are some questions I get asked regularly by gym members looking for advice. Most commonly these questions are asked with a certain body-type and physique or aesthetic goal in mind.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to lose a couple of pounds of fat in the name of health and self esteem. The caveat is that the fitness role models these (mainly ladies) are pinning and posting relentlessly more often than not adhere to meticulously calculated caloric intakes and follow well-programmed heavy- lifting programs. BUT I digress…
You can’t say you want tone in a muscle. ALL OF YOUR MUSCLES HAVE TONE IN THEM - if they didn’t you wouldn’t be able to move, sit, stand or do anything! you would essentially be a sack of skin with organs and bone inside (BLECK). You can increase tone in your muscles by lifting heavy and eventually you think “wow my hamstrings are tight” and hey! that’s probably because they have too much tone and you need to foam roll and stretch and decrease that tone to balance things out!
If you want to tone your abs, clean up your diet (eat within your macronutrient ranges too!) and add high intensity exercise + heavy lifts and you’ll be well on your way :)