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How quickly can I expect to see changes?

By April 23, 2009 - 11:54am
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I have gone from hiking for about 45 minutes a day five days a week to one and a half hours a day six days a week. I started on the 20th April. I am just wondering how quickly I may see results. I don't really have weight to loose and am just trying to get my legs, etc. very toned. My goal is toning and firming. I already eat very healthily and am actually improving my diet even more by including raw vegan vegetable soups and kale, etc.. and completley cutting out bulking foods and sugars.

I am hoping to see changes within a couple of weeks. Is this possible?
I am 5 ft 6" and weigh 134lbs with measurements of 35" 26" 35".
I also throw in a weight training session at the gym about three times a week of moderate weights for about an hour a time and do ab exercises, lunges, etc..
Again, this is all for firming purposes as I believe that my weight is fine.

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Ah spinning class....now THAT looks hard!!! LOL....good idea!

April 26, 2009 - 10:41am

I just tried a spinning/cycle class for the first time, and my legs are sore! I know you said you ride your bicycle, but I definitely push myself more (intensity and duration) when I'm at the gym, surrounded by other people, a great motivating instructor, and great music! This could help you with your goal, too.

For me, I skip the arm weights and do the old tried-but-true way to shapely arms: push ups!

April 26, 2009 - 7:00am

Susanc, my legs are not stout!!!!I was a skinny thing in school, if you remember? LOL! My legs are naturally shapely and a little muscular from all the hiking! I just want them to be the best they can be! And they will never be thin. I know this and it's fine....I like shapely gams!
I use an elliptical at the gym sometimes and it's great...the hiking is also excellent. I am actually seeing changes already and I only started this regime a week ago. Like I said, my weight is great and has even actually gone down by a few pounds already(though that isn't my goal) and I am seeing great definition in my arms and back.
Btw, to get your shoulders and chest leaner try some chest and shoulder weight machines at the gym(if you go). Weight training is fabulous for the upper body.

April 25, 2009 - 1:20pm

Thanks Alisiak,
I rest once a day every week and not all of my workouts are super strenuous. I mix things up by running sometimes, walking on the flat or uphill, bicycle, etc..
My father is in his 80's and his whole life he has walked miles every day through the countryside and is super fit and healty still....he has always been active six days of the week and never needed hips or knees or anything replaced. He had a hernia operation recently and asked the doctor if he could go back to chopping wood the next day....the doctor said that he could if he felt up to it!
Isn't it good to be very active and keep everything moving?

April 23, 2009 - 10:12pm

I tend to agree with Anon about being cautious about over-working yourself. It sounds to me like you're setting yourself up for overuse injury.

When you put your body through the same paces every day, you're really not challenging yourself. Change up your routine, and remember to work on flexibility.

April 23, 2009 - 4:17pm

Thanks for your input, Anon! Good advice. I am not being overly strict on when I should start to see more results...just interested and curious, as I am excited at my new goals.
Do you recommend leg weight machines too?
I am taking one day off a week to rest completely.
My little scottie hikes with me and doesn't know what hit him with two hikes a day!!! He is very young and full of beans and finally I am tiring him out!

April 23, 2009 - 3:56pm
EmpowHER Guest

I am currently working on receiving my personal training certification and have a strong passion for fitness. It sounds as though your desired results are well thought-out and achievable, although putting a time limit on your results can often lead to unhealthy expectations.

You need to be cautious as to not overwork your body and muscles in the process. In my opinion, if you continue your mindful eating and healthy workouts, your results should be noticed within a 3 to 4 week window, based roughly on your weight, height and workout regime.

The fastest way to see muscle tone is through weights. For the legs and butt a few exercises that produce great quick results include; lunges, one legged squats, leg press, barbell deadlift and stair climbs using low weight and high repetition.

I am no medical expert on the matter, but I have been in involved in fitness for the past 8 years and throughout my life have been active. I hope my input helps!

Happy Workout :)

April 23, 2009 - 3:34pm

Thanks Alison...I think that your advice about more vigorous workouts is very good! I will try that.
No on the milk though...have detested milk and all of it's "relatives" since I was 18 months old! LOL. Maybe there is something else?

April 23, 2009 - 3:24pm


You are right not to be concerned with your weight...you are in a very healthy range!

There are so many variables that go into "toning", but you are doing the best things you can: eating well, exercising most days of the week with hiking and strength training.

I think the only other factors I can think of are: how intense are your workouts? You should have 1-2 days of moderately-intense or vigorous, as well as a few days of moderate.

The other important factor in building muscle (and getting the definition) is rest and recovery. Make sure your muscles are getting adequate R&R, as that's when the muscles build (and tone). During the workout itself is when the muscles are being fatigued and "torn down".

I did read somewhere (not sure if credible, will try to find source) that drinking a cup of lowfat/nonfat milk after strength training can help.

April 23, 2009 - 2:49pm
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