The Easiest Daily Workouts to Tone Up Fast from The Easiest Daily Workouts to Tone Up Fast

The Easiest Daily Workouts to Tone Up Fast

Toning refers to a firm body with muscular definition and shape. This is a goal many people have but how long it takes to achieve the objective is highly individual. “People who have muscles and are strong and fit have been working on their lifestyle and activities for a long time, and that is why they look a certain way,” Alayne Rowan, personal trainer and a fitness instructor, says. “A lot of effort goes into being strong, athletic and seeing results.” But there are certain tricks you can incorporate into your routine to speed up the process.

Change up the pace

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If you currently are exercising, and want to see a change in your physique quickly, besides changing your nutrition, Rowan recommends changing up the pace of your workout. “Do you always run a 10k twice per week? Run sprints instead. Do you only do cardio? Add a HIIT class twice per week. Always picking up the 10 lbs weights? Increase to the 12’s or 15’s.” Doing some sort of total body movement at a new intensity often shocks the system and can lead to a quick response or change. “But do be careful of injuries and don't push too hard too fast,” she adds.

Target specific muscles

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Certain muscles respond the fastest to exercises. “Each person has a region of their body that tends to ‘lose inches’ faster than other parts,” Rowan says. She adds that some women's legs get lean very quick with lunges, squats and deadlifts, while other women see faster changes in their arms by doing burpees, pull-ups, curl to press, and combinations of plank row and plank push-ups.

Standing ab exercises

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“It does seem that most people struggle to see change in their abs, and I truly attribute this to nutrition, stress, and often the inability to really activate the transverse abdominis,” Rowan says. Learn a few quick tips to handle the stress. Get more rest because lack of sleep causes weight gain. “Standing ab exercises like cable chops, kneeling crunches, and sprinting are great to help see change, but hard to perform correctly,” she adds.

Jump rope

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“I would recommend jump rope as a 3x-4x per week workout,” Rowan says. Like everything, however, if you do it all the time, your body gets used to it, or it gets injured from repetitive motions. “Jump rope is an awesome way to increase your calorie burn in a quick amount of time, and it forces you to have great posture, working the shoulders, and gets you quick on your feet,” she adds.

Add a stability ball to your routine

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Both men and women can perform several effective exercises that target the chest, lower abs and arms. “I like doing the dumbbell chest press on the stability ball. I like push-ups off the stability ball, and adding a knee tuck (for abs),” Rowan says. She also recommends a move called the “roll out on the TRX,” which is much like the ab wheel, or TRX triceps extension.

Moving push-ups

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“I also like to do a moving push-up where you spread the arms and legs wide, do the push-up and then come back to a narrow position of the legs and arms,” Rowan says. Do the exercise as you move across the floor and you’re going to really feel the burn. When you have mastered the movement, try a few other very difficult alternatives such as the planche push-up and the 90-degree push-up.

Slow leg lowers

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For low abs do something called slow leg lowers: Lay on your back, legs bent at 90 degrees, draw belly button in and try and keep low back curve neutral (not mushed flat, not over-arched). Slowly bring one leg away from your center and return to start, then the other leg away from center and back to start. Complete this for one minute. 

Nordic Curl

Do a Nordic Curl, which is an eccentric hamstring curl, on your knees, Rowan says. The exercise is very effective. Don’t push yourself too much if you can’t do a lot of reps. Have someone hold your ankles, or hook heels under something. Start to tip your entire body forward from the pivot point of your knees. Do not bend at your waist. See how far forward you can get before you have to relax (and end up in a push up position).

Eccentric training

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Resistance training is important part of your exercises routine if you want to see faster results, stay fit, and maintain good health. During eccentric training you focus on moves that are working muscles as they lengthen, rather than as they contract. It can have several benefits including increased strength and muscle power. Rowan recommends five reps of the eccentric squat. “Slowly lower into your squat position, and then stand at a regular pace.” Do an eccentric pull-up next. Jump into the holding portion (or pull up) and then slowly lower down. Finish with an eccentric push-up. “Complete just the lowering phase of the push-up keeping your body straight as a board (use hands or knees).”

Burpees made easy

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Burpees are one of the best exercises out there but they are very difficult. This is not a reason to skip them. “I have people do all the movements that put together the burpee, but slower and perhaps a few reps of each,” Rowan says. Begin standing, do 2-4 squats, and then place your hands on the ground or on an elevated step or box. Walk – don't jump – your feet back until you are in a plank position. Hold for 5 seconds and complete 2-4 push-ups. Hold plank again. Walk or step your feet wider than your hands and hold the low squat position (hips down chest up). Stand from your squat. This is one rep. Do several more.

Cardio machines

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Cardio is important for your backside. Don’t skip it because you want to build muscle fast. “Personally, I like the step mill because I hike and I will wear a back-pack with it,” Rowan says. “I also love the rower, because it is a total body workout, and you can push yourself and get a great workout in a short amount of time.” Spin classes are another great alternative if you don’t want to run on a treadmill but still burn calories. “Cycling inside can really pay off for outside cycling as long as your training inside is similar to how you would ride outside,” she adds. “The machine I like for strength training is a cable machine with the ability to place the cable at any height.” 

For the thighs

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The best leg exercises for the thighs and glutes are also very basic. You don’t need a gym to work out in. Walking or reverse lunges, side lunges, side walking with resistance band, squats, step-ups, deadlifts, and sprints are all very effective, Rowan says.  

10-minute upper-body workout

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This workout is designed for the wannabe buff brides, according to exercise physiologist and Bowflex Fitness Advisor Tom Holland. “Feeling comfortable in a shoulder - or arm-baring dress can be a challenge for even the most confident bride. The 4-part strength training session will get you toned. Start with the chest fly, followed by row and/or tricep kickbacks, followed by overhead press, and finish with dumbbell curls. Holland recommends completing the moves in 2-3 sets of 10-15 repetitions for a circuit-style workout. For maximum results, complete the workout three times each week on non-consecutive days. Be sure to use weights that are more challenging for the last few repetitions.

Decrease reps, increase weight

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“If you want to increase the size of your biceps and other muscles, you should do fewer reps but increase the load,” Chris Williams, fitness instructor at O2 Fitness in Charleston, South Carolina, says. If you can normally do 10-12 repetitions, increase the weight until you can do 3 sets of 4-8 reps. “You should be reaching the point of failure by the third set,” he adds. (See what you can do if you're too tired).  

Plank circuits

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A circuit of different types of planks will definitely have your core burning. It’ll be effective, Williams says. Some trainers call the plank “one of the greatest things for your abs.” You can do sets of standard planks, side planks or side plank crunches, reverse planks, straight-arm planks, planks with lifting your leg up, one-legged planks, and twisting knee planks. You pretty much won’t be able to move after a couple of sets like that. 

Mountain climbers

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This is another full body exercise, primarily used for cardio, which also builds strength. It’s a plyometric exercise that strengthens multiple muscle groups – core, lower and upper body. The torso won’t drop towards the ground because the obliques, abdominals and the muscles around the hips are all engaged. Place your hands on a medicine ball for bigger challenge.