Hey fellow healthy living junkies,
I feel like I do enough cardio during the week, but am still not reaching the 'toned goddess' physique I had imagined from running 20-30 kms/week. Can anyone recommend a really great toning series that I can do in conjunction with my cardio? I am looking for arms, abs and bum primarily. Also, if I want to see the results, should I eat protein/protein shake after?
Your comments are very much appreciated. xx
Starting Strength is great for "toning".
New Rules of Lifting for Women is also a good book to read (and follow the program) if you are new to weights.
If you want to improve your appearance, get leaner, etc, you need to lift heavy weights. New Rules of Lifting for Women, Starting Strengh, Female Body Breakthrough, etc. I would choose an established program to follow, especially if you are new to weights. And do make sure you are eating enough cals and getting enough protein.
Yikes! I didn't realise what a literal minefield I had got myself into by using the 'T' word. Not that I completely agree with all he said.
Thank you for your comments, I will definitely look into Lifting for Women....
Well, part of it that you have to understand that it's essentially in response not just to the marketing and equipment makers, but also to beginner people who are overweight and want to get started in weight-loss/fitness, but have been convinced that they don't need to work hard in order to achieve top results.
It's happened too often in this forum where a person posts something like:
My stats are such that I am considered overweight/obese. I want to look great in a bathing suit for some upcoming season and lose an inordinate amount of weight in an unreasonable amount of time, but I don't want to get all muscular (if a girl or woman) or rail-skinny (if a boy or man). I just wanna tone.
Translated: "I want 100% results for 10% the effort. Teach me how, because it seems like it's easy for you people."
"Toning" in this context is being used as a sort of "lazy excuse to work out with less intensity for people who don't want to become a fitness model, bodybuilder, or athlete." And unfortunately, since we as humans prefer to take the easy road for whatever we do, we eventually subsumed that word to mean "meander through a workout."
It's that disconnect between less work but high expectations that drives people crazy, the ones who know that there is no such thing as what the "toners" expect.
That's where the aggravation comes from, the "you don't have to work out as hard but can still achieve the same results as those who are. Now let's point and laugh at all those people lifting heavy weights and running their asses off. Aren't they foolish?" attitude. The "we know something those people don't, so pay us $59.95 and we'll tell you what the secret is!" while the whole "eat right, exercise" is free.
It's just more difficult and time-consuming.
That's where the angst against the word "toning" comes from, for the most part and how awfully misused it is.
Your context of "toning" is much closer to the mark, as it does sound like you do work hard and need just that one extra "boost." It is, unfortunately, not as common, so that's where you might feel like you stepped in a field of landmines.
I like what weirdfish said. Roughly converted you're running 12-18 miles/week. Run more. Are you running every day? How long is your longest run? I'm a personal trainer and certified running coach so I've got some experience here. I run every day-mixing up long and slow with short and fast. Choose a 5k race and train for it to give yourself a goal if you need one. I would suggest short runs during the week from 5-7k and a long run on the weekend 10-12k. Give yourself at least one day off, two if you really need it or life just gets in the way.
Regarding lifting weights-don't be afraid to go heavy and don't worry about looking like a guy. It won't happen. Focus on a full body routine to help keep your muscles in balance from running. The programs mentioned above are a good start as well as hiring a trainer to get you going.
It's going to take time and consistancy of exercising and eating right to achieve your goals and maintain them which is work. However, the end result of having a healthy body to live a fabulous life is more than worth it.
I worked out in the past with a woman who lifts weights and runs and does lift heavy. She qualified for and ran the Boston Marathon this year. Her first marathon was in San Diego where she qualified to go to boston. She had lost 80 lbs in the last year- Lots of running but also a lot of cross training - that woman is a beast!! A true inspiration. I personally can't run and don't like to run (it hurts) but I do love weight lifting and metabolic workouts and I will jog while walking my dog but just short intervals.
I run 5km 4-5 times a week, 5km maximum... but would definitely like to extend that. I have also joined a 5km race that I will run in 3 weeks.
I will try and up it to 6km during the week in the next month and then eventually 8km, and then slowly build up to 10-12km at the weekends. As my fitness is just not there at the moment, would you recommend running/walking a 10km track or running a 6km, then 7km, then 8km.... and so on to build up to 10km?
I play netball 3 times a week in addition to this, so I am not worried if I take 2 days off some weeks.
Thanks for the advice!!!
It's OK to walk some as you build up your distance. That's fine and I would recommend it. It gives your muscles just enough rest that your overall average speed may be quicker compared to running the whole time, getting tired and having to slow down. If you're out on the roads or trails, walk the hills. I trail run and race so I'm always hiking up the big hills to save energy.