If you are looking for ways to begin toning and strength training, but are intimidated, or at a loss of how to begin (I know I was), I would HIGHLY recommend checking out whether your local gym offers body sculpting (aka body pump) classes. It is easy to pick up that way, as the instructor slowly walks people through each exercise, so beginners never feel alienated. Also, you choose your own weights, so that everyone can work at the own level. My gym (the Downtown Oakland YMCA) offers both morning and evening classes almost every day. I usually make it once or twice a week, and have not only developed muscles for the first time in my life, I have learned a lot about lifting weights, plus many of the exercises I can do now on my own, even on days when I can't make it to the gym.