Totally Toned Arms by Rylan Duggan, CSCS
Genre: Exercise, Nutrition
(from the back) Since she burst into public consciousness, Michelle Obama has proudly displayed her lean, toned, sexy arms, which have become the envy of women everywhere…. Now certified personal trainer and body-sculpting authority Ryan Duggan presents his groundbreaking program designed to help you develop amazingly toned arms. This three-week program will boost your metabolism, burn fat, and build muscle.
Totally Toned Arms is a Totally Terrific program. It centers around burning fat the right way, building muscle the safe way, and boosting the metabolism the healthy way. It explains the different kinds of fat, the different problems you may have with fat-burning and muscle building, and explains things that you may worry about or question.
The concepts behind the processes in the book are very well explained, so even those who have no knowledge whatsoever can understand what is going on in their body when they follow this program.
The program itself is not that scary. It’s designed around simple exercises that anyone can do (yes, anyone). What makes them hard and what makes them work if anyone can do them? How fast, how many, and how hard you try. So who does this book cater to? Everyone—old, young, athlete, couch potato. Now it won’t leave you looking like a body builder, but it sure will make a difference. (of course, if you are a couch potato you’re going to have to work a little slower to build up. In a worst case scenario, you may have to do the program twice… and that’s not such a bad idea for anyone now is it?) There are black and white photographs and very clear instructions for the exercises.
In fact, you don’t even need a gym to do this program—all you really need is something to lean against, a stair or bench, a theraband (very inexpensive, and I recommend the medium or heavy. Not the super-heavy unless you’re an athlete of some kind), and a few hand held weights. In fact, you don’t have to buy hand held weights, you can do what I did as a kid—use cans of soup.
Speaking of soup… Totally Toned Arms doesn't just focus on exercises, it also has a nutrition program that targets what you eat, how much of it you eat, and how often you eat it. And water… Everyone knows you’re supposed to drink 8 cups a day, right? Well here’s something I learned from Totally Toned Arms—8 is the minimum for a properly functioning body. 10-12 is the recommended amount. How many of you drink that much water? I know I don’t… *winces guiltily* But I’m gonna try to start…
There’s also a 21-day plan for the exercises, and even meal plans (so you don’t have to get too creative).
With all this great stuff… the only thing it doesn’t have is after-work out stretches… which, as I learned from biking, ballet, gymnastics, even horse-back riding and just about every other PE activity I’ve done, is that stretching after exercising is crucial to healthy muscles. So if you go out and buy this book… stretch a little after your workout. And take a hot shower that night… You’ll need it if you want to be able to function two days later (no it’s not that bad. I’m being sarcastic. But you do understand, right? Stretch!!).
I’m going to end this review by giving you a little note about myself (which I know isn’t customary, but bare with me): You may ask “What gives you the authority, Haley, to say that this book is a good book or a bad book for weight loss, muscle development, and nutrition?”
My answer is this: Not much. I don’t have a degree, I am not a trained physical therapist. However—I was a ballet dancer for five years. I’ve been trained by many teachers from all over—Prima Ballerina from Mariinski Ballet (Kirov) in Russia, Artistic Director of Carolina Ballet and the dancers there, Ballerina and Soloist from St. Louis, to name a few—who all have very good understanding of anatomy, muscular development, and therapy. I’ve had injuries, and worked with physical therapists (CB’s therapist for their dancers, local therapists, chiropractor) on and off for about two years for my own injuries. When I became a substitute teacher, I helped others by giving exercises and suggestions for their training. One of my ballet teachers (for three of those five years) studied nutrition in college at NCSA.
As a ballet dancer with no studio over the summer, I used to dance by myself, and do therapy for my various injuries (knees are 25 degrees off centre! among other things) by myself—and after having to tape my knee for two years, I did therapy for a week (5 days at the gym) and was able to break myself of keniseotext tape for the rest of my dancing career.
Enough about ballet—as a biker, I ride pretty fast and pretty hard. My regular speed is 18 mph (no wind, flat surface) and my record is 26.9 (same. no wind, flat surface.). I got there after riding for about six months straight, that was after I quit ballet.
I hope you don’t think I’m bragging or trying to give myself authority that I don’t have. Because really I don’t have any authority whatsoever. What I’m trying to prove is that although I don’t have any official authority, I have a whole lot more general knowledge about muscles and nutrition and experience and practice than the average person.
I hope you’ll trust me on this one—Totally Toned Arms is a very good program.
Recommendation: Ages 12-ish to adult