9 Best workouts toning you from head to toe

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9 Best workouts toning you from head to toe

We know it when we see it – that person who has a well-toned body from head to toe.  Whether it is a man or woman, anyone with a toned, sculpted body is hard to miss.  Their arms, legs and torso are in shape, with just enough muscle definition to show they have been working hard to achieve the body they have.

How did they do it?  Is there a specific exercise or workout plan they do that all of us should follow to achieve the same results?  The answer to this is perhaps but not all of us necessarily want to do exactly do what someone else does for physical activity.  Some people love to run while others abhor it.  Maybe swimming is your thing but what about those who never had the opportunity to take lessons? 

Here are examples of various workouts that can appeal to a wide range of individuals and what each of them have to offer in toning and redefining the look of your body:

1.  Tennis for toning arms

Anyone who has ever picked up a tennis racket to lob or slam a ball back and forth will feel the workout their arms will be getting.  Besides helping tone and tighten arm muscles, a forehand swing is great for your chest while a backhand develops the shoulders.  The more you move on the court the more it helps you burn calories along with fat. The less fat you have, the more muscle that will appear and get noticed.

2.  Swimming for upper body strength

In case you have noticed, Olympic swimmers have some of the most developed upper bodies in the world of athletes.  All that pulling against the water provides perfect resistance for your arms while doing freestyle, backstroke, or butterfly builds strong deltoids in your shoulders and pectoral muscles in your chest. 

3.  Pilates and Yoga for core strength

It is very important to have a strong core – the area through your back, sides and abdomen.   Having a strong core is important for the transfer of strength and power from the lower extremities into the upper body.  A weak core increases your chances of hip, low back, neck, shoulder, and knee pain.  By practicing Pilates or yoga, many of the poses they use target the deeper abdominal muscles that aren’t commonly engaged. 

4.  Bicycling for legs  

To get fit, toned, shapely legs, hop on a bicycle.  From your quadriceps and hamstrings to your calves, this is a great workout for leg muscles.  Challenge yourself by taking a path with hills to really ramp up the benefits of biking.  Even a stationary bike can be a good alternative if getting on a regular bike is not for you.

5.  Run for the whole body

To get an allover physically demanding workout, running is your friend.  This high-impact activity is not only weight-bearing helping strengthen your bones protecting you from osteoporosis, but is one of the best moves for making your heart strong and healthy.  Switching up between running and walking is always a good idea making it easier on your joints. 

6.  Walk if running is not your style

Walking is a perfectly good alternative to running – not everyone can or wants to run.  Walking can give most of the same benefits as running but is much kinder and gentler on your knees and feet.  Pick up the pace and in no time you’ll be building strength in the leg muscles along stronger bones. Don’t forget to pump your arms – it may feel or look silly but the more body parts you are moving, the more calories you will burn leading to a nice, toned overall look.

7.  Dance for arm, core, hips, and legs

From ballet to belly dancing, waltz to disco, dancing is one of the very best physical activities to do plus it’s fun. Dancers have some of the best bodies around.  Incorporating all kinds of dance moves leads to significant toning in the arms, core, hips, and legs making you look long, lean, and fit as a fiddle. 

8.  Elliptical for firm thighs and glutes

Want to get rock solid thighs and a firm butt?  Go get on an elliptical.  Combining the motions of stair climbing and cross-country skiing, elliptical trainers give a great workout for not only your lower body but also a good workout for strengthening your back and arms.  Because of their gliding motion, your joints will have much less impact on them than running does.

9.  Golf for relaxation and longevity

To get the full body benefits of what playing golf has to offer, skip riding the cart and instead walk the course.  The time spent pulling your golf clubs (or carrying them) while maneuvering the landscape, can rack up a lot of miles. Playing golf may also rack up years in life – a Swedish study found that playing golf could lead to a greater life expectancy with golfers living over 5 years longer than people who don’t play golf.