With the right exercise and diet you can have shapely arms.
Toned, well-defined arms can be your best accessories, but it takes determination and hard work to achieve them. In addition to strengthening and sculpting your arm muscles, you must reduce the fat in your arms so the underlying muscles become visible. With a well-balanced diet, and regular cardio and strength training, you'll have toned arms in no time.
Reducing Arm Fat
Arm-strengthening exercises will do just that -- strengthen your arm muscles. Just doing biceps and triceps exercises isn't going to give you toned arms. These exercises won't touch the fat that's covering your muscles, because spot-reducing fat in one area of your body isn't possible. To reduce your arm fat, focus on reducing fat from your entire body. When this happens, the fat in your arms will also decrease, making the well-defined muscles underneath visible.
A daily caloric deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories can make you lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, which is the expert-recommended weight-loss rate. Eating a healthy diet that includes low-fat dairy products, vegetables, lean protein, fruit and whole grains, can help you achieve this goal. Replace high-calorie foods with foods that have fewer calories, eat smaller portions and cook your own meals so you're in control of the ingredients. Find a healthy balance so your diet is easy to maintain and becomes part of your lifestyle.
Perform at least 150 minutes of moderate-intense cardio per week and incorporate strength training on two days. This burns calories and increases muscle tissue. Cardio can consist of riding a bike, water aerobics or a game of doubles tennis. Strength training should work all major muscle groups, such as your legs, arms, back, chest, abdomen and hips. In addition to strengthening your muscles, strength training builds muscle mass, which increases your metabolism and burns more calories than fat.
In addition to biceps curls to work the front of your upper arms, working the back of your upper arms -- which is a common problem area -- is essential. Exercises such as triangle pushups, dips and triceps kickbacks are effective since they stimulate the most muscle tissue, according to a study sponsored by the American Council on Exercise. For optimal results during strength training, work your way up to doing two to three sets of eight to 12 repetitions, using weight that's heavy enough so the last repetition is hard to complete.