I know I've said this in a million other posts but I feel some reiteration from time to time is necessary. Are you ready (pretty much directed to the ladies)?
PICK UP A DUMBBELL. GET OFF THE TREADMILL.
I don't know... was I clear enough? I feel like I need a megaphone to preach this from the mountaintops, and even then I'll get the same responses of "But, like...lifting weights makes you all like, bulky..."
No. NO. No no no no no.
Most girls want this crap called "tone". What the hell is that?! Seriously? If I wanted "tone" I'd go do Tracy Anderson's little "metamorphosis" workouts with 3-lb. dumbbells. Yeah, no. You won't get "toned" spending two hours on the elliptical/treadmill/bike/(insert extremely boring cardio machine here). Yes, I do use cardio machines from time to time but I'm not on there for a long time unless I get distracted talking to someone. I keep it short on those things, and intense.
And you also won't get toned lifting pink-coated dumbbells that don't go above 10 lbs. Seriously.
I'm not going to hate on the female bodybuilders, like the above Yaxeni Oriquen, but if you lift heavy weights you will not turn into She-Hulk. Female bodybuilders train for sometimes hours a day, eat upwards of 4,000+ calories to fuel intense muscle growth, and inject themselves with testosterone/steroids. Women don't have anywhere near the amounts of testosterone (a hormone essential to building huge muscles) that men do. Not even CLOSE. That's why women bodybuilders have to inject the hormone into themselves to get that big.
If you weight train, you'll look something more like this. Granted, this is bikini competitor Christina Vargas and she probably underwent intense dieting and training to get that body in that particular condition, but that's the gist of it. You won't have that low of body fat, but you won't have muscles growing on muscles. You will, however, have clear definition and a smokin' hot body.
You'll look lean, muscular but not overly done, and fit. Don't fear a little muscle! Muscle increases your metabolic rate, meaning you burn calories throughout the day even when you're not exercising, or simply just SITTING there. Yes, with more muscle, you'll have a higher number on the scale, HOWEVER, muscle is more dense than fat, so it takes up less space on your body. Case in point:
This girl is a prime example: she gained 9 pounds, however she clearly lost FAT (what you want to lose) and gained MUSCLE (what you want to gain).
Basically, the minute you step off that cardio machine, your calorie burn stops right then and there. When you weight train, you're burning calories all throughout the day and even during sleep because you have damaged your muscles to the point where they are constantly looking to be fed, burning calories in the process.
There is a time and place for cardio, however, if you're looking to seriously "get fit" then I urge everyone to go pick up some iron.
Okay, that is all. :)