How do you get that TONED look?
This is me after performing last year at High Sierra Music Festival in sunny CA with my group Samba Stilt Circus –>>
When I was dancing to Femi Kuti (!!!!) while he was rocking the main stage at High Sierra Music Festival…a woman leaned over and said, “oh so that’s how you got such a nice booty!” Meaning I got my fit shape from dancing. I quickly thanked her. But then I had to lean back over and say, “I also lift weights, to be 100%.”
I know people are always trying to figure out the magic combination to health, energy and a lean fit body…and as a dance & weight training teacher…I wanted to give her the scoop, since she did ask 🙂
Do you want to have a lean, toned body with a nice, low level of body fat?
Do you want to have a lean, toned body with a nice, low level of body fat?
Well, if you want that look…then you want to choose the *best* kind of exercise to achieve that look!
Choose the *best* kind of exercise to achieve the “toned look”:
I think that if you can get a toned, defined look with these types of exercise it’s because you may be blessed with a more “muscular type” physique, as the science and research has shared repeatedly that just doing cardio alone is mostly good for burning calories…but the amount of calories that it burns can be easily made up by having an afternoon snack. 🙁
The toned look
The toned look comes from building muscle…and unfortunately building muscle, lifting weights, strength training, or the more general words “working out” are all used interchangeably…have gotten a bad rap!
Lifting Weights has gotten a Bad Rap:
No Pain, No Gain?
—That you need “no pain, no gain” to get results…this is def NOT true, and pain is a signal from your body to STOP…what’s called “full body strength training” does not make you feel pain. (Daniel Craig, full body strength trainer … you’re welcome :))
The more Instagram popularized style of “split-body training,” (what part are you working today?) where you do a bunch of sets on a few body parts does indeed make you feel sore. And then you rest those body parts for an entire week. This is the more popular way to train for body building competitions at the moment…
BUT Arnold Schwarzenegger actually built his career and his first championships doing *full body* strength training…
and the handsome James Bond actor, Daniel Craig, also full-body strength trains, for that “athletic look”…
As you can image, if you’re balancing working the front & back of body parts on the same workout…that’s going to go a lot better with everyday life & activities, like walking, sitting, etc…AND it goes way better with SPORTS, dancing, swimming, et all.
Is being sore necessary?
—Another myth about pain: when you lift weights you’re supposed to have a hard time sitting & getting up from the toilet or taking the stairs.
Well, no, that’s just not true. That’s called DOMS—delayed onset muscle soreness, and you want to avoid that…because if you feel that sore you should take a break from exercising…and that’s going to really put a dent in your ability to keep going with your workouts, getting results, and enjoying your life 🙂
What you do want to experience—
Is learning how to *control* the weight…how to move with a slow TEMPO…we don’t want explosive movement as much, as that increases the force of the weight (turning a 10 lb weight into 20 or 40 lbs, by adding the explosive movement to it)…and that leads to injury…
Cause the results do come from CONSISTENCY…and not pain. They come from a meditative movement, where you feel really connected to your body, you feel really connected to your breath…and you get more & more inspired to eat food that gives you energy…
If you want a lean, toned athletic look….the best way to get there, regardless of your muscular body type and genetics…is to add in a little strength training to your life.
Add in a little strength training to your life
I highly, highly recommend using weights…and not just your bodyweight…for working out at home. The main reason is because it’s really hard to *progress* bodyweight workouts. As in, you get great at Wall Sits, so then you move on to Lunges…but lunges are very hard on your knees and ankles if you have extra bodyweight you’re trying to lose OR your have alignment challenges (like me personally)…and that can cause injury and a stopping of movement.
I kind of hate watching those Facebook ad videos with young girls jumping around doing explosive movements, like jump squats or bouncing walking lunges. If you’re 20 and you have knee cartilage to burn, well go for it. If you’re blessed with good alignment and you don’t have a lot of body fat to lose, well go for it. But for most people, I think it sets a really bad example. You want to control the weight…and move it in a slow and meditative way. THIS is how you can get hot, lean, muscle -building results with *light weights* and your own bodyweight.
—And that leads me to one more damaging MYTH about lifting weights that’s out there…that building muscle makes you look bigger/fatter. Well, muscle is actually DENSE and as you build it; it actually condenses before it bets bigger, and the act of building muscle uses energy…and denser muscles themselves use (and give off) more energy…so having more dense muscle is a very vibrant thing and very helpful for burning fat/using your body’s resources well.
I recently went to the doctor for an annual exam. Oh man, the nurse was very surprised to keep pushing that scale weight farther and farther over to the right. I think she looked me up and down, saw that I have a lower level of body fat, and thought I would weigh a bit less.
How much you weigh is not a good measurement of health…’cause muscle does weigh more than body fat…so the number on the scale could potentially go down, stay the same or even up when you build muscle. I think for me personally it makes me look more solid. It also makes me look athletic and trim.
I don’t mind being more solid, as I think it helps in today’s world.
If you want an athletic, lean look…
If you want an athletic, lean look…you want to do the kind of exercise that’s going to give you that look.
And I’m excited to share how you can do this in a way that feels good on your body, it’s meditative and FUN (move & use your booty, baby! :))…and how you can get HOT results controlling the wight and rocking the TEMPO of the move with Light Weights and your bodyweight…so that you can *stay in the game* and get into the pleasure and satisfaction of a little consistency from your movements!
I am opening back up my Home Workout program…this time with a 12 Week Challenge…and I would love to invite you to join me!
People have loved these workouts in the past few 6 week challenges I have run…I’ve also added some more variety AND flexibility to them…AND, I have made the Eating for Energy part of the Workout Plan way more user-friendly and fabulous.
I think one of the common concerns I hear from people is that they get super motivated to start working out…but then they feel tired from their workouts and it feels hard to keep going!
As I ranted about above, the KIND of movement you’re doing is important. So if you’re doing spin classes or dance classes as your main form of exercise, that can be very draining….and not that effective for achieving the physical “look” that you want.
Eating for Energy
And secondly, it really does take eating in a way where you think about—is this meal or snack going to give me *sustained energy* or is it going to make me feel a little sleepy or grumpy after I eat it?
Eating to have the energy you need to workout is key…and it doesn’t need to involve counting calories per say. I’m recommending *counting protein* content and basing your meals and snacks around protein, instead of carbs. I’m also not anti-carbs at all. Carbs that digest more slowly CREATE energy…plus they taste good, are comforting, and leave you feeling full and satisfied.
I’m pro-veggie and healthy fats. And I have added a NEW environmentally-friendly way to get in your protein, while improving your gut & colon health, increasing your ability to get/absorb nutrients, and burn fat in a time-tested way…and that’s with sprouting beans! It can be a pain in the butt to do, but I’ve been working on a system to make it do-able this past winter—and I am So Excited to share it with you and everyone! Plus, it’s a great way to support sustainable farming practices, and also decrease your grocery bill so that you can afford to buy more organic, grass-fed stuff.
12 Week Challenge invite:
Ok, so I would love to invite you to join me for a 12 Week Challenge…using Home Workouts…and eating for energy…with my new streamlined program. We are getting started this weekend…
AND, I know when you read adverts for fitness programs they often say…do this for 30 days/6 weeks/12 weeks and achieve these results. Well, I’m going to tell you that as you start doing the program, you’re going to start getting results right away…the end goal is satisfying, but feeling good, building muscle, feeling energized has results RIGHT AWAY and every day as you progress.
Truly you want to burn fat/build muscle in a “slow and steady wins the race” sort of way…as research shares that rapid Weightloss usually equates with rapidly gaining the weight back plus extra :(…so we’re going IN with this 12 week challenge.
Awesome tools…great progression of movement…simple supplies…and get that athletic, toned body through feeling GOOD. Check it out and come say you’re IN:
Lots of love & pleasure in moving it,
P.P.S. This is me after dancing in the THIRD parade at the music festival this past weekend…yes I LOVE dancing and I think it works great in a Pleasurable Fitness movement plan…but my toned, athletic shape is from weight training and not dancing. It would take a long time and dealing with injuries that come along the way to get that fit look from dancing alone…I’m not blessed with that naturally muscular body type myself…and when I look at photos of me with *just dancing* as compared to dancing/walking + lifting weights…from different points in my life…the difference is amazing (all of the photos below too are from dancing/walking + low-load weights :))