With the country’s new perspective on marriage equality, I expect we’ll see more than the usual number of weddings this fall. That also means more brides and grooms coming to my office looking for help with weight loss. While the “I have to lose weight to look fabulous for my wedding” feeling seems most urgent for those donning the traditional bridal gown, many grooms are using their wedding as an opportunity to get back into shape too. Of course we all know there is no quick fix to get your body ready for wedding glory. However, using your upcoming nuptials as motivation to make some lifestyle changes is a good way to start your marriage off on a path to good health.
Top Ten Pre-Wedding Hints:
- Get yourself a big calendar that you can post in a highly visible location. Every morning, write down your exercise plan for the day. If you don’t plan it, chances are you won’t do it.
- Start a food diary. There are lots of apps available or use plain old pen & paper! Studies show that recording your food intake improves awareness and the likelihood of successful weight loss.
- Find a quick exercise shortcut that you can squeeze into even your busiest days. Betwen work and all of the planning you’re doing for the wedding, it may be tough to find time for a trip to the gym every day. My favorite shortcut is “The Scientific 7 Minute Workout” featured in this New York Times article by Gretchen Reynolds. http://nyti.ms/YGJck2.
- Remember this is a happy time in your life, so don’t focus too heavily on foods you have to avoid, but rather focus on the positive! Add an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables to your daily routine. Each meal should be at least half produce. If you start with the veggies, you’ll fill up on the high fiber, low calorie options. Move over bread…don’t mess with a bride on a mission!
- Create a little competition if you like, bride versus groom, bride versus bride, groom versus groom…just keep it friendly and low pressure. Involve your wedding party to join in and find out which team can win the most points for consumption of fruits and vegetables. A serving of either one equals a point! Or give a point for every 10 minutes of exercise. Be sure to plan a fun prize for the winning team.
- Strive for 150 minutes per week of moderate intensity exercise, such as brisk walking. Do your wedding planning during walking meetings whenever possible. Check out this list of exercise ideas from the CDC: http://1.usa.gov/Kvq4Li and find an activity that you can do with your fiancé.
- Do you have a weakness? Pick your “no-no food” and set a rule for how often you can eat it. Do you love french fries? Try a once a month limit. Are you a soda drinker? Try cutting down to one can each week.
- Engage your fiance’s support, but remember this is your project. He or she may not be interested in joining your quest. Either way is okay, as long as you get the encouragement and support you need!
- Manage your expectations. People who lose a lot of weight with aggressive calorie depleted diets often gain the weight right back, and then some. Yo-yo dieting rarely works out well for anyone. Focus on the healthy choices you’re making to feel great in your wedding gear and less on what the scale says. Make lifestyle changes you can keep forever.
- Love your body and nurture it. If you have a healthy relationship with food, and an active lifestyle, you’ll be well equipped to focus your love on your new spouse.
Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!
Thanks for listening. I wish you (and your fiancé) the best of health!
Please follow me on Twitter @LisaOldson or at http://www.DrLisaOldson.com