How Do You Tone up Without Losing Weight?

Updated on April 06, 2012
M.. asks from Detroit, MI
17 answers

I need to tone, pretty much my whole body more, but I CANNOT afford for my clothes to get any bigger.

Would you just do weight training? I do the elliptical a lot, which is great for toning, but it also burns a ton of calories and I dont want to lose weight. Would you increase calories?

I dont know, I cant afford a personal trainer either. I need tips!

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answers from Jacksonville on

Wellll, I can just say that in MY case.... running.
I started in January, and have gained 3 pounds and my legs and butt are bigger. :(

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sacramento on

I know they say muscle makes you lose weight faster, but that's never worked for me. I could do weight training every workout and not lose weight. For me, it's all about cardio to lose weight. If I drop weight training and focus on cardio only, the weight comes off.

I agree with Tracy K. A mix of yoga, pilates and weight training will tone you up but not cause you to lose an excessive amount of weight.

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answers from Dallas on

Yoga and Pilates along with weights

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Denver on

I LOVE pilates... so that is my suggestion.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

Even strength training burns more calories. Thing is if you are already at a good weight what either will do is tone.

I don't know if I am explaining this well but when I was working out regularly when I hit my proper weight little changed except tone.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Richmond on

I do crunches, push ups, dips (where your legs are extended out in front of you and your hands are on a low table, like a coffee table, and you let yourself down and push back up), pull ups, side stretches with weights, lots of alb weight lifting, squats, and some stretches to work my glutes...

I've been doing this for about 20 minutes every day the past 3 1/2 weeks and have noticed a pleasantly surprising difference, especially in my waist, 'abs' (that I'm not supposed to be working at all), and most of all, my arms and butt!!

I lost 3 lbs that first week but I think it's because I haven't done ANY exercise in so long. Now my weight has stabilized, my boobs may be a tiny bit smaller (but I'm also watching what I eat, sort of)... I'm just getting back into a healthy life style all together. My bathing suits look GOOD, even though my stomach is still a hot mess from having 3 kids and now no tummy tuck!!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbia on

ETA - found it.

Look back thru the questions in the last day or two. Theresa posted one that I think the title referred to Riley. Anyway - Riley posted this answer some years ago about a broom stick exercise.

Broom stick over shoulder with arms hanging over - and twist side to side. She claimed great core conditioning plus inches lost.

I tried it last night and really could feel it (just 7 minutes).

I'm on my phone, so looking up the link is pretty difficult - maybe someone could help find it and post it?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Spokane on

If you do decide to do some weight training go with the lighter weights and more repititions b/c it will give you lean muscle vs. heavier weights with less reps will give you bulk.

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answers from Columbia on

Weight training with LIGHT weights. Lots of repetitions. This will tone your muscles and you'll actually put on a little muscle weight because muscle weighs more than fat.

Cardio burns fat. Decrease your elliptical time. If your gym has an AMT (it's like a cross between a stair stepper and an elliptical), I'd try that. Increase the resistance and you're REALLY tone your bum, legs and abs. I love it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

Even if you gain weight, as you might do with weight training, because muscle, as you know weighs more than fat, be prepared that your clothing might not fit you. any exercise regimen will cause you to change shape, as you tone, lengthen etc, at least at first. Eventually, you will plateau, then you can count on things fitting predictably for a while.

Meanwhile, I am sure that there will be a ton of mamas out there who will be very jealous of your problem.

good luck to you and yours,
F. B.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

You need a weight lifting regime. All women should be lifting weights at least twice a week to build strong bones. As we age, that becomes much more important. You can look up tons of videos on youtube that show you exercises to do for your total body. I lift three times a week, so I will list some of my favorites for each body part below. Also, try combining two body parts in one move to really spike your heart rate and make that metabolism even faster... I know you don't want to lose weight, but it's still good for overall health.

Legs: lunges (forward and back), squats (free or assisted with machines), side lunges for inner thigh, step ups on bench or step
Shoulders: side/front lifts, pull ups, overhead press
Arms: biceps - curls with weights or machine
triceps: dips (with your own body weight), kickbacks, overhead press
Chest: the push-up is literally the best overall body toning exercise you can do! Also, chest press, chest flyes, decline or incline chest press
Back: Push-ups! Also, pull backs with weights or machines, lat pull down bar

Don't forget abs! I focus less on traditional crunches and more on holding my abs in and tightly while doing leg lifts or toe touches. Use an exercise ball to sit on while doing sit ups, and try some assisted with a medicine ball or weight for extra effort. The "bicycle" is a great ab exercise too. I really recommend youtube, there is so much out there! Hope this helps a little!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

I practice yoga & have a somewhat regular pilates routine, too. I record yoga shows on my DVR, so I have a variety to choose from each day. I also have the Winsor Pilates series. If you don't want to buy DVDs, you can borrow them from your local library. If you do choose to buy, you can buy cheaply on eBay. Yoga & pilates will both tone up pretty much your entire body. You will burn calories, but it's not high intensity exercise. Wish I had the problem of not having to lose weight!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Amarillo on

If you can, swim. You use all your muscle groups. Swam at a neighbors pool at night and toned the body without all the other exercises. I lived in Tucson at the time and it was great swimming from 8 to 10 at night.

Also look at what you are eating and how much. Try to push the plate away when you first feel full and let the rest go. Or fill your plate and eat half of what you have on it.

You will figure a way to do it and do it right. Good luck to you.

The other S.

PS Go slow and you will have great results as the body resets itself and needs less.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Gainesville on

Anytime you start to exercise your body will change. And you really can't tone/build muscle without losing fat. Weight loss is inevitable and better for you in the long run.

You could try to increase calories to stay the same weight but that doesn't mean your body will be the same and that your clothes will fit the same. Also, if you increase calories you have to make sure you are making healthy choices.

I personally love the Jillian Micheals stuff. And yoga. Yoga is great for strengthening and toning.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

There are a lot of women who would want your problem. :)

Yes, increase calories but good calories. An hour before you exercise have eat something with protein (egg, yogurt, cheese, protein smoothie).

While working out a good sports (not energy drink) drink that has potassium. The body creates toxins while exercising so you want to flush the toxins out.

After a workout, more protein and potassium. Banana smoothie is great.

Varying your excercise is ideal. You want to tone all of the muscles. So cardio one day, weights another, etc.

It is great that you know that even though you are skinny, exercise is still important.

A good book to read is Miss Junk Food.

Many blessings.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Lift weights only ...isolate one group at a time. If your heart rate goes up take a minute. Be sure you eat after your workout to build muscles.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

To NOT lose weight, starve yourself. Smaller portions at longer intervals and exercise. Traditional 'dieting' is the BEST way to gain weight/halt your metabolism. Just do it a week, then be normal. Then a few weeks later, do it again. Make sure uoy're hungry. It will slow your metabolism down very quickly. You'll lose a few pounds and then you'll gain it back plus more on your regular eating.

1 mom found this helpful
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