when to start toning your body?

So I recently started going to the gym and I only do cardio. My mother says that I should also do the weight machines but I'm scared that they may make me heavier and look bigger. So is it better to do only cardio and when I'm happy with my weight and body that's when i start toning? Or should i just begin now?

Replies

  • faeriecake
    faeriecake Posts: 18 Member
    I barely do any cardio and I primarily focus on muscle gaining and strength training. My weight stays the same (muscle is heavier than fat) but I've lost inches around my waist. Weight training is going to give you the "feminine" look, not make you bulky. Start toning now! And don't just do the weight machines, free weights are much more effective.

    Also, more muscles = more calories burned.
  • IsaackGMOON
    IsaackGMOON Posts: 3,358 Member
    edited July 2015
    Doing weights or using machines will not make you bigger. You're female, you have less testosterone compared to men. And even then, muscle building is a long and slow process.

    Toning is a gray term in my eyes. It's pretty much have a low enough body fat to have your muscle visible to get that 'toned look'. To reduce your body fat, eat in a caloric deficit and lift heavy to preserve as much muscle mass.

    These are good beginner programs;
    • New Rules of Lifting For Women
    • Strong Curves
    • ICF 5x5
    • Stronglifts 5x5

    In terms of nutrition, this is a good frame work for your macros;
    • 0.6-0.8g of protein per lb of body mass
    • 0.4-0.45g of fat per lb of body mass
    • fill rest of calories with carbs

    TL;DR - lifting weights will not make you bulky because less testosterone and it's slow anyways. Lift heavy, eat in a deficit to get the 'toned look'.

    faeriecake wrote: »
    I barely do any cardio and I primarily focus on muscle gaining and strength training. My weight stays the same (muscle is heavier than fat) but I've lost inches around my waist. Weight training is going to give you the "feminine" look, not make you bulky. Start toning now! And don't just do the weight machines, free weights are much more effective.

    Also, more muscles = more calories burned.

    You are in correct in saying this @faeriecake , however, the amount of muscle that would need to be gained is quite a large amount to make a difference. And because OP is eating in a deficit, she isn't going to be gaining muscle.

    This is one of those 'generic fitness terms which is correct and both incorrect'
  • jemhh
    jemhh Posts: 14,273 Member
    If you are eating in a deficit, you are not going to get measurably bigger while lifting weights. You likely will retain some water in the beginning, due to muscle repair, but it is not going to be OMGilookhugeandfeellikeablob type water retention. It will be more like "hey I can see my bicep a bit" and then you'll come on and say that you gain muscle really easily and we'll say no you don't your muscles are just full of water.

    Bottom line, resistance exercise now is a great idea. It will help you maximize your lean body mass retention while losing weight and then you'll look firmer once you lose more fat. Plus it makes life easier since you can lift/move/haul more stuff around yourself.
  • ninerbuff
    ninerbuff Posts: 46,688 Member
    "Toning" is a subjective point of view. Where Jessica Biel looks "toned" to some, to others she looks "bulky".

    You lift weights to retain muscle and improve the "hardness" of it. Who wants flabby feeling muscles? Arms or legs that wave when you move? CONDITION your current muscles by resistance training.

    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

    9285851.png
  • Iron_Feline
    Iron_Feline Posts: 10,764 Member
    edited July 2015
    http://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/977538/halp-heavy-lifting-made-me-supah-bulky/p1

    Start now - you'll only put on a small amount of muscle from newbie gains if you're eating at a deficit - but you will look better and be happier when you hit your goal.
  • SueInAz
    SueInAz Posts: 6,585 Member
    edited July 2015
    If you're trying to lose weight by eating less than you burn each day you aren't really going to gain any muscle so there's no chance that you'll get bigger or bulkier, even if you actually could. What will happen, however, is that you'll retain more of the muscle you already have which will help lower your body fat percentage. Since it's much easier to keep the muscle you have than to build new muscle, the time to start lifting heavy weights was yesterday.

    I personally started lifting last May. I weigh 10 pounds more than I did at my lightest a few years ago (122) but I'm wearing the same jeans I wore then. Before I started lifting, at this weight I would have been about 2 sizes bigger.
  • shadowofender
    shadowofender Posts: 796 Member
    I'm still extremely overweight (like 80lbs left to lose) but I mostly lift. I have lost about two pounds in the past two months but my measurements all changed drastically. I'm much happier with that than the scale anyway.

    Weights are good for you. Cardio is good for you.
  • Brolympus
    Brolympus Posts: 360 Member
    So I recently started going to the gym and I only do cardio. My mother says that I should also do the weight machines but I'm scared that they may make me heavier and look bigger. So is it better to do only cardio and when I'm happy with my weight and body that's when i start toning? Or should i just begin now?

    Been actively trying to look bigger for over a year with minimal success OP. You are going to be just fine. If you do only cardio, and have low muscle mass, your body is not going to look the way you want it to when you hit your goal weight. The "bulky woman" look that seems to have every woman on earth scared to touch a weight rack is achieved through heavy drug use.

    This is actual difference in body type between a normal woman who does extensive cardio and one who does explosive work such a weightlifting and HIIT type training:

    Marathon-Runner-vs.-Sprinter2.jpg
  • demoiselle2014
    demoiselle2014 Posts: 474 Member
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.
  • Iron_Feline
    Iron_Feline Posts: 10,764 Member
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.

    Agreed - I don't like pictures than need to bodyshame to make a point.
  • Iron_Feline
    Iron_Feline Posts: 10,764 Member
    Radcliffe.jpg?mode=crop-up&width=640&height=0&quality=80&slimmage=true

    I wouldn't be upset if I had her body.
  • Katzedernacht
    Katzedernacht Posts: 268 Member
    Not bulky,if you say that cos you've read S shirts don't fit so well for girls who lift or cos skinny jeans are IMPOSSIBLE to get in,well yeah, cos those are not designed for girls who do aNY lifting, it doesn't mean you are "big".

    Been lifting for 3 years, biceps won't go bigger than 26 cms, what has changed is % body fat,and yeah legs are starting to be a bit bigger,which is awesome for me hehehe and others have told me it looks nice,also , a bigger round butt is not to be taken lightly.

    We do have much less testosterone, I can lift "heavy" and I am nowhere bulky,so fear not.
    To get super huge I'm almost sure you'd have to juice. means using hormones/roids
  • Katzedernacht
    Katzedernacht Posts: 268 Member
    Radcliffe.jpg?mode=crop-up&width=640&height=0&quality=80&slimmage=true

    I wouldn't be upset if I had her body.

    A body changes according to activity, powerlifters are built different cos it's what they need to for their sport. so mind not such things :3
  • shadow2soul
    shadow2soul Posts: 7,693 Member
    edited July 2015
    So I recently started going to the gym and I only do cardio. My mother says that I should also do the weight machines but I'm scared that they may make me heavier and look bigger. So is it better to do only cardio and when I'm happy with my weight and body that's when i start toning? Or should i just begin now?

    Start now.
    Top Row: Feb - Just started Stronglifts 5x5 (switched to ICF 5x5 late April)
    4gnk0h5yhevh.jpg
    Bottom Row: Bikini Pics are from July/last pic is from mid June

    And this is from the other night in normal clothes:
    riba7onmignc.jpg
  • Brolympus
    Brolympus Posts: 360 Member
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.

    Agreed - I don't like pictures than need to bodyshame to make a point.

    Stop being so oversensitive. There is no bodyshaming. YOU are the one judging and projecting it. That marathoner is ultra-lean and probably does very well in her sport. A sprinter would suffer detrimental loss of muscle needed to be competitive if she dropped her bodyfat to levels that low. This is just what different types of athletes look like. If you want to argue that all athletes are going to look the same regardless of their type of training, I would be amused to hear that argument. If I put up a pic of a sumo wrestler next to the sprinter, would you say I was trying to "bodyshame" them as well? Typically the best sumos are the ones with the highest combo of strength and weight, which gives them added stability over an opponent when absorbing a strike or push. OP needs to understand what bodyshape she wants to achieve and match that style training. Lifting weights is not going to make her look like a female bodybuilder or "bulky", her fear was not realistic. My point of showing her the picture was to show her what her current training style of pure cardio would yield and what weight training/less cardio would yield.
  • IsaackGMOON
    IsaackGMOON Posts: 3,358 Member
    edited July 2015
    Brolympus wrote: »
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.

    Agreed - I don't like pictures than need to bodyshame to make a point.

    Stop being so oversensitive. There is no bodyshaming. YOU are the one judging and projecting it. That marathoner is ultra-lean and probably does very well in her sport. A sprinter would suffer detrimental loss of muscle needed to be competitive if she dropped her bodyfat to levels that low. This is just what different types of athletes look like. If you want to argue that all athletes are going to look the same regardless of their type of training, I would be amused to hear that argument. If I put up a pic of a sumo wrestler next to the sprinter, would you say I was trying to "bodyshame" them as well? Typically the best sumos are the ones with the highest combo of strength and weight, which gives them added stability over an opponent when absorbing a strike or push. OP needs to understand what bodyshape she wants to achieve and match that style training. Lifting weights is not going to make her look like a female bodybuilder or "bulky", her fear was not realistic. My point of showing her the picture was to show her what her current training style of pure cardio would yield and what weight training/less cardio would yield.

    +1
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.

    How is it not fair? It's not hard to tell that when the marathoner is at rest, she will pretty much look the same. She isn't going to look like the sprinter at rest.


  • Iron_Feline
    Iron_Feline Posts: 10,764 Member
    Brolympus wrote: »
    I don't think that photo comparison is fair. Clearly, the person who created it had an agenda. Plus, showing one woman in motion in the midst of strenuous exercise while the other is resting means that no real comparison between the two can be made.

    Agreed - I don't like pictures than need to bodyshame to make a point.

    Stop being so oversensitive. There is no bodyshaming. YOU are the one judging and projecting it. That marathoner is ultra-lean and probably does very well in her sport. A sprinter would suffer detrimental loss of muscle needed to be competitive if she dropped her bodyfat to levels that low. This is just what different types of athletes look like. If you want to argue that all athletes are going to look the same regardless of their type of training, I would be amused to hear that argument. If I put up a pic of a sumo wrestler next to the sprinter, would you say I was trying to "bodyshame" them as well? Typically the best sumos are the ones with the highest combo of strength and weight, which gives them added stability over an opponent when absorbing a strike or push. OP needs to understand what bodyshape she wants to achieve and match that style training. Lifting weights is not going to make her look like a female bodybuilder or "bulky", her fear was not realistic. My point of showing her the picture was to show her what her current training style of pure cardio would yield and what weight training/less cardio would yield.

    Lol lol lol

    That marathon runner is Paula Radcliffe who did very well holds a rather nice record and retired this year.

    And where did I say all athletes have the same body shape. Hysterical jump to conclusions, well done.

    And if you put a sumo wrestler next to a sprinter with the caption which bidy would you prefer - then yes. That would be body shaming.

    Funny rant though. :laugh: