Metabolism is a set of chemical reactions that occurs within our bodies, in our tissues and cells in order to maintain life. The calories they eat now are even more likely to be stored as body fat due to the loss of muscle.
The problem with this approach is that this will severely damage and lower your metabolism due to the loss of lean muscle tissue. Pounds pile back on quickly and in most cases they put on more than before they first got started. In relation to exercise and keeping a lean, or as most would refer to as toned look, your body would have a lower than average percentage of body fat or below average body composition (lean muscle to fat ratio). A small, sustained fat loss over a longer period will ensure that your metabolism remains in check. Doing cardio alone isn't going to cut it, as it doesn't really build much muscle, if any at all.

Now they have an even bigger mountain to climb to rebuild the muscle that they've lost to boost their metabolism and get their body burning like a furnace again.
I often get clients coming to me and say I just want to get toned but I don't want muscles. The weight lost is short lived; hormones will wreck havoc, doing its best to hold onto all of the remaining body fat that remains, as it dips into starvation mode.
Well they are pretty stuffed in this situation if they don't want to build any muscle and yet they want the lean look. So the more lean muscle that we have, the more energy we burn at rest and the higher our Basal Metabolic Rate. Our body can't tell the difference between dieting and starving, so it will do its best to preserve body fat as it is our emergency fuel store for survival, and burn off as much muscle as possible as it is not vital to survival. In short, what getting toned really means is that you have some lean muscle and low in body fat.

So the take home point is, if you want to look lean, do weights as your first priority and ensure that you feed your growing muscles with lean protein frequently to keep your body in an anabolic state preventing muscle breakdown.
You can't burn body fat without muscle as muscle burns calories and it is the only tissue in your body that can burn enough energy in order to make any visual impact on your bodies aesthetics.
Do some cardio on top of your weight A·training to burn off some excess calories as a bonus, and rest well. Building muscle is the best way to boost your metabolism keeping your body lean for as long as you maintain your muscle mass.

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