You’re finally getting married, and it’s such an exciting time. You’ve gotten many likes on your engagement photos on Facebook and Instagram, and you and your partner have come up with the perfect hashtag for your wedding, and you’re planning all the time. Deciding where you want the reception to held, meeting with photographers, coming up with the guest list. But one of the most important parts of planning your wedding is being as fit as you can be. In the same way that a sorority pledge wants to feel fabulous in her sorority dress during rush, you want to feel as beautiful as possible in your wedding dress. Photos on social media may come and go, but your wedding photos are forever.
You know it’s going to be a challenge, but you’re committed. You want to feel fit and beautiful on your big day, and you’re willing to put in the work. If you’re ready to get fit, follow these tips.
Hit the gym
One of the most important ways of getting healthy is by exercising. Especially during such a busy time as wedding planning, it can feel almost impossible to make the time, but it’s important. For one thing, it’s effective for weight loss when paired with a healthy diet. But additionally, it’ll make you feel great. If you want to tone your bod, then a combination of resistance training (think: weight lifting class) and aerobics are going to make you feel awesome from the first week you start. And that rush of endorphins is an added plus that will decrease your stress from planning the wedding.
In fact, exercising for merely 20 minutes benefits your mood for the next 12 hours. If you think you don’t have time to go to the gym often, even going for a walk or jog every day can make a huge difference. And Bikram yoga burns calories, too. If you’re worried about getting motivated, then you can always pressure your maid of honor to join you.
It can be tempting to go on an insane diet or cleanse where you don’t eat for a week so that you can fit into a wedding dress that’s a size smaller than you are now. But that isn’t a healthy way of dieting and is guaranteed to end with you crashing and burning one night, eating as many Snickers bars as possible. The stress of wedding planning doesn’t help, either. According to James Clear, a weightlifter who writes about everyday habits and decision making,
“There’s a reason why many people eat as a way to cope with stress. Stress causes certain regions of the brain to release chemicals (specifically, opiates and neuropeptide Y). These chemicals can trigger mechanisms that are similar to the cravings you get from fat and sugar. In other words, when you get stressed, your brain feels the addictive call of fat and sugar and you’re pulled back to junk food.”
Especially in the US, where we’re constantly bombarded with unhealthy foods that are much cheaper than their healthier alternatives, it can be easy to reach for a tub of ice cream instead of the stack of yogurts in the fridge. In 2016, the rate of childhood obesity was as high as 37.7 percent in some states, which goes to show what a national problem this is. But now that we know the cause, and you aren’t blaming yourself, it’s important to understand how to change your habits. Because the minute you do, it is your responsibility.
One great idea is avoiding restaurants and eating out in general. Cutting out drinking will help, too. (These two options also mean that budgeting for your wedding will suddenly be a breeze!) As for what to eat, take a look at this seven-day diet meal plan to get inspired. Once you know what healthy foods you enjoy most, it’ll get easier.
Hitting the gym and eating healthy can feel like real challenges, especially if it’s your first time committing to getting fit. But making sure you relax? That’s something that anyone can get behind. Like with exercise, it can be hard to schedule relaxation time into your busy schedule now that you’re getting married, but it’s important. Remember that 96 percent of couples getting married admitted that wedding planning is stressful, so many other brides are going through the same thing you are.
The best way to make sure it happens? Schedule into your calendar. It doesn’t have to be long; a twenty-minute soak in the tub can be completely revitalizing. Ask your partner or best friend to join you, and you won’t feel so guilty for taking time for yourself. And remember: sleeping well is also key. We all need our beauty sleep.
By using these strategies, you’ll be not only fit for your wedding, and look beautiful, but you’ll also be healthy, too. And that’s the perfect way to start any new stage in your life, especially one where you have a partner who can do it with you.
What other strategies do you use to stay healthy?