How to Reach Your Fitness Goals Before the Big Day
So, real talk. The goal of losing weight and living healthier is one of the most common goals out there, especially when it comes to preparing for a special event. And what special-er event is there than your wedding day? Many of us that have a ring on our finger have the goal of slimming down a bit before we squeeze into that dress. Just thinking about the dress and the pictures that will last forever makes me suck in my gut a little bit. Disclaimer: If you already feel comfortable in your own skin & don’t have the goal of losing any weight before your wedding day, go you! That is something worth celebrating! BUT for the rest of us that want to work on that fitness routine before the big day, here are some of my favorite time-tested ways & reminders to work towards a healthier lifestyle:
Count your calories.
One of the keys to reaching your fitness goals is simply being a conscientious eater. In an age of mindless eating & eating while doing other things, it is easy to slip into the habit of eating without being hungry. By counting calories, with an app like MyFitnessPal, you can become a conscientious eater. It’s usually my first step towards watching what I eat. It also helps me cut down on mindless snacking throughout the day. Calorie counting will make you see the impact of your lifestyle & will help you make your calories count. You’ll be taking the first step in taking control of what you eat!
Eating breakfast is actually a huge deal. We’ve all heard that it is “the most important meal of the day,” but do you know why? Technically speaking, breakfast is important because it breaks your overnight fasting period to replenish your supply of glucose and other nutrients to keep your energy levels up for the whole day. So whatever you start your day with will jumpstart your metabolism for the rest of the day! If you consume more calories in the morning and less throughout the day, it’s a great way to manage and maintain your weight.
I am a big snacker. I tend to let myself get super hungry, buy unhealthy snacks, then still eat a huge meal! If you are proactive and don’t allow your body to get super hungry before eating, you’ll be able to control your portions while still getting full. A great way to do this is to stick to a regular meal schedule and pack healthy snacks for throughout the day. Think foods that are high in protein and fiber. Or carry some fruit!
Sample in sample size.
Being that you are planning a wedding, you are going to be trying A LOT of food. Like a lot. So remember that you are sampling food, not eating a meal every time you taste test an entree or cake.
Pick healthy venues.
Deciding where to host (and how to cater) all the pre-wedding festivities can help you to stay on track or throw you way off from your goals. If you plan overindulgent showers at venues that will encourage you to overeat, it will make it that much harder to stick to your diet/fitness routine.
“Running” errands ≠ running. Yes, you will be busy. You will probably be exhausted at the end of the day. But that does not mean you got your workout in for the day! Don’t fool yourself into thinking that a busy schedule can replace going to the gym or going for a run. And let’s be honest, you are going to feel so much better if you do get that workout in! You won’t only feel accomplished, but you will feel physically refreshed.
Treat your workouts like an appointment.
If you were to look at my calendar a month ago, you would have only seen the things in my schedule that absolutely needed to be done. I’m trying something new, though, and writing down even the little things I should get done every day. Not just the big things are a priority…and it helps me to accomplish everything I want to in a day! If you schedule working out just like you would any appointment, it will help you to manage time and still get your workouts in.
Limit alcohol intake.
You can easily pack on extra pounds with a little bit too much celebrating. Just think of this- a pint of beer can have just as many calories as a large slice of pizza! Those calories can add up quickly. Even worse, calories that come from alcoholic drinks are empty calories & don’t provide any nutrients. So, pay attention to your drinking habits to see if you could cut back a bit and lose a few of those extra pounds!
Sleep is a huge factor that affects your health. Having a busy lifestyle can really do some damage to your sleep schedule, so make sure you’re getting a healthy amount of sleep for your age and activity level. Getting too little sleep can affect your metabolism and contribute to weight gain. While we sleep, our body is working hard to store carbohydrates and regulate hormones that affect our weight. Messing with that equilibrium is a pitfall busy people make!
There are many ways that drinking water affects our health! Firstly, replacing high-calorie drinks with water can help control calorie and sugar intake. A lot of high-calorie drinks are full of empty calories, whereas water also helps you burn more calories! Our bodies need water to perform digestion. Drinking water before eating a meal can also help to trigger feeling full faster. So making sure to drink enough water can help to prevent long-term weight gain (not to mention all the other health benefits).
Support to lose weight is a HUGE deal. You need cheerleaders, workout partners, and/or a support group to stay motivated! And you don’t only have to rely on your S/O for that support. A lot of people out there are also working towards fitness goals of their own and also need a support team, so ask around at the gym, join a workout group, or find an online forum for some support! You’ll be surprised with how motivated you’ll be to make your people proud…plus you’ll get to support some other health-seekers out there.
Say “no” to fad diets.
Every few months, a new fad comes around, claiming to be the best/only way to lose weight or keep weight off. Do you remember the outstanding success of the master cleanse?? Or the Zone Diet?? How about apple cider vinegar diet?? They all claimed to be the best way to lose weight quickly, but they weren’t a lifestyle change. Fad diets will tell you a way to quickly lose a lot of weight by practically giving up food for a few weeks, but they don’t last. Most of the time you’re just going to mess up your metabolism and quickly gain back anything you lost when you start eating food like a regular human being again. So, look for a way to incorporate healthy foods and an active lifestyle into YOUR life. Don’t change everything for ten days then go right back to your old habits. Focus on your health instead of the number on the scale and you’ll feel better & feel great once you get in that beautiful dress on your big day!