If you’re having a summer wedding, waiting until the weather gets nice to begin getting into wedding shape won’t give you optimal results. Of course losing your love handles won’t make you a happier bride, as anyone who’s watched a carb-deprived wife-to-be lose her mind over a tasting menu knows, but it can help keep your bridezilla at bay.
After starting to train, you will begin to notice changes in your body after four weeks, friends and family after eight weeks, and the world will notice after twelve weeks. You want to look even more amazing than you already do for your big day and the winter is the perfect time to get a head start on training. After all, working out, like marriage, is a marathon not a sprint. Here are eleven ways to get fit during winter so you sizzle in your summer wedding. According to a Brides.com survey, a bride-to-be makes an average of 177 decisions during her engagement; make working out one of them.
Start getting into work out videos. DVD players are basically old. Luckily, workout videos are now readily available on Youtube. Jillian Michaels has workout videos for all fitness levels including a yoga video that makes you sweat!
Insanity is a tad what it proclaims to be, especially if you’re starting in pretty average shape, but you will get results. But honestly, some of the most effective videos are old school ones from the 80s like 8 Minute Abs and 8 Minute buns. It’s hard to make an excuse when the videos are only eight minutes long. If you cannot make eight minutes of time for yourself, then marriage ain’t going to be all that pretty.
Winter boasts some surprising health superstars that are in season during the blistery months. Pomegranates, citrus, potatoes, and dark leafy greens are all at their peak. Add tropical flavor to a nutrient-rich sweet potato by topping it with cilantro, coconut flakes, and pomegranate seeds with this recipe from Whole Living. Just because you get to wear oversized sweaters, does not mean you get to abandon your diet.
Find ways to move at work. Wear a watch to work or use the stop watch on your cell phone and make sure to get a total of at least twenty minutes of walking or activity per day. It can be broken up into a bunch of two-minute intervals or into two ten-minute ones. Go up and down the flight of stairs in your office as many times as you can for two minutes, do anythingto get up. I am constantly running errands for coworkers. “I’ll take a walk. No problem!” “Need a coffee?” I at least pretend I’m getting something. “Anyone need anything on the other side?” Hey, a minute is a minute. It all adds up.
Start biking. If your excuse to avoid the gym in the winter is that you’re a runner and you simply can’t run on treadmills, well it is time to throw that excuse out the window. I have a secret…biking, is sitting. I know the “boss girls” out there are cringing, but bring your iPad and watch Netflix. Time will fly. Just be aware that it’s not a spring afternoon and you’re not riding for fun, this is working out. Mix up your speed every two minutes, riding fast for two, and then cool down for two. Stationary bikes can be boring like treadmills, but provide the foundation for a lifelong love of biking. There is something about riding for miles that releases a lifelong habit. Once the weather gets nice, biking outside will feel like a treat and your miles will be paired with scenic views to make them seem shorter.
Treat workouts like an appointment. You wouldn’t dare miss a cake testing or fitting and you need to treat your workouts as a wedding priority. Letting your workouts go by the wayside will make you feel guilty and cause more stress. Add your workouts to your Google calendar so that no other obligations can conflict with your gym time.
Another great way to fit in working out with all the winter wedding planning is to workout with your fiancé before or after appointments. That way, you can treat the gym as an errand that needs completing and as an activity the two of you can enjoy together.
Get a Veggetti. Winter is well known for being a time when people put on extra pounds due to all the savory food being consumed. A Veggetti can help make savory pasta dishes, healthy, by swapping the carbs for veggies and allows you to cut vegetables easily with its turn and twist mechanics. The Veggetti creates spaghetti out of vegetables perfect for stir-fries, salads, and garnishes. Butternut squash is in season and makes the perfect guinea pig vegetable to test out the Veggetti as pasta. Incorporate Brussel sprouts, which are also in season, with this recipe here to make the perfect Va-talian (That’s veggie-Italian, if you didn’t catch that) meal.
Recreate sunlight – It’s true that temperature and light have direct impact on our body rhythms in the winter extremes. There are simple things you can do to encourage yourself to leave the comfort of your bed when the skies are black in the early morning. Getting out of bed is rough when the sky is dark. Invest in a bedside lamp that simulates natural daylight. The Phillips ‘Wake-up Light,” endorsed by the Natural Sleep Foundation, gradually increases light and comes with a built in clock and alarm. Beginning your day with natural light sets off an internal clock.
Be the vegan baker—Office life can leave your hands full with all the sweets being brought in. Bringing in sweets and desserts is a very social office thing us cube-heads like to do. Contribute to the party by baking healthy versions of the sweets so you don’t feel left out not eating any. Vegan baking allows you to indulge without the guilt, and New Year’s Resolutioners will thank you for forcing them to stick to their goals, too. Here are fantastic vegan recipes by Ali Mahterian that we absolutely love. An added benefit of vegan baking is the fact that it intrigues people; and you’ll probably make conversation with new people in your office, inquiring about your recipes and your reasons for baking healthfully (ehhh awkward because you already sent out wedding invites).
Consider Vitamin D supplements—Living in the northern hemisphere, it is not a bad idea to consider taking Vitamin D supplements. Numerous studies have shown that oral intake of 1000 IU Vitamin D can reduce the risk of colon, breast, and ovarian cancers by as much as 50 percent. Vitamin D is found in fortified dairy products like egg yolks and fatty fish. However, reaching the recommended level through food alone is rather difficult. The Canadian Cancer Society recommends that all adults take Vitamin D supplements every day during the fall and winter seasons. A vitamin D supplement can help give you the energy boost that you need during winter months.
Honeymoon State of Mind—Imagine the satisfaction and confidence you’ll feel lounging on the beach with your new hubby in a body that you worked for. Picture how easy walking the streets of Europe will be when you’re in better shape and how much better the wine will taste. Envisioning your goals is one of the best motivators in creating a habit. Book your honeymoon as soon as possible and mark it on your calendar. Having a goal in mind makes it that much easier to head the gym when you might not feel like it otherwise.
Get on social media. Checking into FourSquare every time you hit up Planet Fitness will most likely annoy your followers; plus, unless all of your followers are fellow gym rats, no one cares if you went to the gym tonight. But, social media has been a proven motivator and tool to holding ourselves accountable. Create an Instagram or Foursquare separate from your active social media accounts and only ask your very close friends and family to follow you. Family and friends are key in maintaining an exercise regimen. Or perhaps you don’t want to tell anyone at all. The act of simply “checking in” and actively posting on an account is a motivator within itself.