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Our Top Tips For Improving Your Muscle Tone



Our Top Tips For Improving Your Muscle Tone

The Holy Grail of exercise is often seen as losing weight, but just as important as weight management is toning up and improving our muscle tone. But how do we exercise specifically to build lean muscle mass? Here’s our top tips!

  • Make a promise to yourself that you’ll exercise five or six times each week. It’s often best to exercise in the morning before your day starts, so that you can feel virtuous all day (which will also help you to make healthier food choices too). Wherever you are on your OYG programme, you’ll notice that our beginner, intermediate and advanced programmes are designed to be completed in around half an hour, three times a week. But in addition, you can focus on strength building by adding in a short, sharp muscle building session such as one of our Power Box & Tone classes. They take ten minutes each, and are a fun, high intensity muscle building workout that can be fitted around a busy schedule. 
  • Don’t be afraid to add weights to your routine – you won’t turn into Arnie (assuming you don’t want to). Weights mean that our muscles are working harder, so have a practice with some bottles of water or tins of food whilst taking part in our Strength Plan. If you like it, then invest in some dumbbells. 
  • Walk and walk some more! If you need to get about, such as for your commute or to meet friends for lunch at the weekend, consider going all or part of the way on foot. Relatively low intensity if you amble, walking can actually be great for fat burning if you up the intensity to a brisk pace. Fat burning, especially around the midriff, is important for revealing all that toned muscle underneath. 
  • On that note – take the stairs. At home or at work if you have access to a lift, resist pressing the call button and walk up (and down) the stairs instead. Even if you’re out shopping or travelling, avoid standing on the right hand side of the escalator, and walk up the left instead. This will help to work your calf, thigh and bottom muscles, and every little helps. 
  • Diet-wise, make sure you’re eating enough protein. Protein is essential for muscle building and it also helps to power our workouts. Healthy protein sources include chicken, fish, eggs, chickpeas, quinoa, lentils, nuts and seeds. 
  • It’s also important to stay well hydrated, by drinking at least eight glasses of water throughout the day (weak squash and herbal teas also count). As well as keeping us from feeling lethargic, staying well hydrated helps the muscles recover from exercise, helping your physique become more toned. 
  • Recovery is crucial for the repair and ultimately growth of your muscles, so rest days are as important to improving muscle tone as the exercise itself. So make sure you have at least one rest day a week. Stretching exercise such as yoga will help your muscles recover and elongate too, so aim for a couple of sessions a week. 

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