Hitting the gym to build muscle is an important part of any fitness routine. Building muscle can help active people improve their form and performance in other activities such as running, biking, and climbing. A common myth is that building muscle and toning are two separate activities leading to different results. We’re here to bust this myth and help you understand that building muscle and toning are truly one in the same.
The primary myth that floats around the internet is that lifting weights will tone your muscles but not build muscle. This is false, as toning and muscle building are truly the same thing. When people try to tone, they are going to burn fat to make the muscle show more prominently than before, and they are going to lift weights to make those muscles even stronger.
The truth is you can’t necessarily “tone” your muscles. When you are “toning” your muscles you are building your muscles, and when you are building your muscles, you're toning your muscles. Your muscles will become stronger, and fat will become leaner, which means building muscle and toning are one in the same.
Add On The Weights
Lifting at lower weights and higher reps is essentially a good fitness routine for those looking to get started in the gym. But, as time goes on, it’s important to increase the weight. If you are lifting for 12 reps and can still hit the 13th rep, you are lifting too light. Over time, increase your weight to keep your muscles engaged and moving in the right direction. Switching up the number of reps you do and the amount of weight will keep your muscles in check and continuously tone and build your muscle.
What to do in the gym?
For beginners, finding a lifting routine that targets all the main muscles in the body is essential for preparing yourself to master your technique down the line. Once you begin to develop stronger muscles, you will also be able to target specific muscles. However, you will need to strengthen the major ones first. If you don’t train the major muscles first, you risk allowing your smaller muscles to become fatigued and increase the potential for injury. Find exercises that you are comfortable performing that target your biceps, chest, core, back, thighs, and calfs. After a few weeks, start adding in exercises that focus on engaging smaller muscles.
The moral of the story here is when you are building muscle, you are also toning, and vice versa. Don’t let building muscle scare you away from lifting. Lifting will not make you bulky; it will only make you stronger and better at all of the other things you enjoy doing in your life. Stick to a healthy routine and you will see results in just a few months’ time. Consider adding ZMA® from InterHealth to your diet. ZMA® provides muscle support through muscle recovery and regeneration. Find out more about ZMA® from InterHealth online here or give us a call at 1-800-783-4636.