5 Key Tips for Getting Firm, Toned Arms - Step To Health

5 Key Tips for Getting Firm, Toned Arms

It’s important that you combine physical exercise with a balanced diet and consistency to get those firm, toned arms of your dreams.
5 Key Tips for Getting Firm, Toned Arms

Last update: 01 June, 2021

For a lot of people, their arms are one of the most problematic areas of the body because, in addition to accumulating fat, they tend to lose their firmness and leave you with a flabby appearance. The problem becomes worse after age 30 when muscle mass begins to decrease and you have more difficulty metabolizing fatty tissue. On top of that, we can also mention the loss of skin elasticity. The good news is that there’s hope and, with some effort, you can get firm and toned arms.

Do not miss the top 5 tips to give them that look you desire.

1. Burn fat for toned arms

A woman lifting weights.

Scientific literature hasn’t reached an agreement on whether it is possible to burn fat from a single point on the body or not. For example, a 2017 study published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness indicates that explosive exercises focused on one area–such as the extremities–may impact fat burning in that region of the body.

In contrast, research published by the American Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreation concludes that localized fat burning isn’t possible. This would mean that you must exercise the whole body to achieve toned arms.

In any case, cardiovascular exercise and a balanced diet are essential in a good plan to combat excess fat, and this is confirmed by studies such as one published by the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism.

You should note that it’s essential to avoid the popular “miracle diets“. Although they help to lose weight, they can also lead to the loss of muscle mass and produce a rebound effect that makes you gain even more weight. This, of course, goes against the goal of toning your arms.

2. Increase your energy expenditures

Daily physical exercise is one of the best ways to burn calories, improve your health, and get toned arms. This habit lowers cholesterol levels, helps keep your blood pressure stable and increases your energy expenditure, which according to a study published in the Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism is the main factor in the loss of weight and, therefore, body fat.

According to the World Health Organization, you should get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day. This doesn’t have to be intense; brisk walking or cycling is sufficient. If intensity exercise is used, the recommendation is 75 minutes total per week.

3. Take care of your diet

A woman in workout clothes drinking orange juice near a counter full of fruits and vegetables.
A balanced diet is essential to obtain good results.

A good diet is key when it comes to losing fat. Although it’s best to consult a nutritionist to plan a diet according to the needs and objectives of each person, general recommendations include avoiding the following:

  • Refined sugars
  • Flour
  • Alcohol
  • Sodas
  • Fast food
  • Cured meats

These foods not only increase the accumulation of fat, but are also responsible for the slowing of your metabolism, fluid retention, and inflammation.

Instead, you should increase your intake of high-quality protein sources; according to research published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, this nutrient helps build muscle after training. Some examples of foods that provide protein would be:

  • Fish
  • Chicken breast
  • Turkey
  • Legumes
  • Cheese
  • Eggs

You should also prioritize the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables, as they provide energy and fullness and replace ultra-processed foods in daily meals. Remember to drink plenty of water and healthy liquids as well.

4. Do toning exercises

Doing daily exercises to tone your arms will help you strengthen muscle mass and reduce sagging skin. Ideally, you should combine routines for the whole body with specific ones for the upper extremities.

For example, push-ups help work the pectoral muscles, but they also work together to strengthen the triceps and biceps. You can also do squats with dumbbells, or cardio combined with weight lifting.

It’s important to start exercising gradually, especially when the body isn’t used to it. Undue overexertion can lead to injury. In addition, you should consult with a physical activity professional for personalized routines and better monitoring of progress.

5. Skincare

A woman preparing a bubble bath.

Cold showers and massages with firming products are a great way to get and maintain toned arms. Although both stimulate circulation, it’s important to clarify that very cold showers haven’t been proven by science to be effective in this regard.

As for the other alternative, there are more precise findings. Research published in Medical Science Monitor confirmed an increase in circulation in the lower back after a massage. Here’s a popular recipe for a moisturizing skin cream, although it’s not scientifically proven.

How do you make a homemade firming cream?

You don’t have to break the bank on commercially available firming creams. Try this simple recipe made with organic ingredients.


  • 1 cup of shea butter (225 g)
  • 3 tablespoons of grapefruit oil (45 g)
  • 3 tablespoons of walnut oil (45 g)
  • 5 tablespoons of mint alcohol (50 ml)


  • Put all the ingredients except the alcohol in a hot water bath or double boiler and leave for 10 minutes over low heat until well blended.
  • Allow it to cool slightly, add the mentholated alcohol and store it in an airtight glass jar.
  • Use the amount you need to massage your arms, rubbing in a circular motion.

You won’t get firm arms overnight

Finally, keep in mind that none of these tips work on their own or immediately. To get firm, toned arms, you must be consistent with each recommendation and be patient in order to see results.

Ultimately, it’s important to reiterate the importance of being guided by a nutritionist and a trainer. They’ll not only be able to help you avoid major mistakes, but will also help you get better results in less time. Get informed and start training!

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  • Stark, M., Lukaszuk, J., Prawitz, A., & Salacinski, A. (2012). Protein timing and its effects on muscular hypertrophy and strength in individuals engaged in weight-training. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 9(1), 54. https://doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-9-54
  • Strasser B, Spreitzer A, Haber P. Fat loss depends on energy deficit only, independently of the method for weight loss. Ann Nutr Metab. 2007;51(5):428-432. doi:10.1159/000111162
  • Paul J. Arciero, Christopher L. Gentile,Roger Martin-Pressman, Michael J. Ormsbee, Meghan Everett, Lauren Zwicky and Christine A. Steele. Increased Dietary Protein and Combined High Intensity Aerobic and Resistance Exercise Improves Body Fat Distribution and Cardiovascular Risk Factors. International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. https://journals.humankinetics.com/view/journals/ijsnem/16/4/article-p373.xml?content=contentSummary-6973
  • Fred B. Roby (1962) Effect of Exercise on Regional Subcutaneous Fat Accumulations, Research Quarterly. American Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreation, 33:2, 273-278, DOI: 10.1080/10671188.1962.10613202
  • Scotto di Palumbo A, Guerra E, Orlandi C, Bazzucchi I, Sacchetti M. Effect of combined resistance and endurance exercise training on regional fat loss. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2017;57(6):794-801. doi:10.23736/S0022-4707.16.06358-1
  • Recomendaciones mundiales sobre la actividad física para la salud. Organización Mundial de la Salud. https://www.who.int/dietphysicalactivity/factsheet_recommendations/es/