Cardio exercise and strength training are well known for their fat-reducing and muscle-toning effects, but one activity -- jogging -- can give you the best of both worlds. The cardio nature of jogging will blast through calories to help you lose excess weight and fat, and the active engagement of the muscles used in jogging will result in a toned look.
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Jogging for Toning Your Lower Body
Jogging targets the legs and butt in particular, as the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and gluteal muscles are used to power you through your run. To achieve a truly toned look, however, you need to eliminate the excess fat that can cover and hide your muscles. Jogging at 5 miles per hour for 60 minutes can burn around 600 calories for a 145-pound person, and kicking it up to 8 mph will scorch over 800 calories. This type of calorie burn can lead to fat loss that will reveal shapely legs and a toned rear end.
Increase Your Incline
To tone and firm your legs and butt, increase the incline on your treadmill or add a hill to your jogging routine. According to Mitchell Whaley, a PhD in exercise physiology at Ball State University, even a slight incline of 2 percent will have you burning more calories and strengthening your legs and butt more than performing the same exercises on a flat surface.