Monday, August 8, 2011

The Low Budget Wedding Diet

With a year left to get ready for the big day, my fiancĂ©e and I have begun the big “D” word. Dieting. Just the thought of “depriving” myself of yummy McD’s French fries is enough to cause nightmares for month. But it’s a necessary evil. Not just because I want to fit into a smaller size wedding dress, but because it’s the healthy thing to do. If we plan on bringing children into this world later on, we both want to be healthy enough to be able to play with them and not run out of breath in 2 minutes.

Over the past 3 weeks we’ve been going to the gym at least 3 nights a week. The awesome thing about the gym that we go to is that it includes full access to the swimming pool. We usually work out around 6pm since that seems to be the time that the crowd begins to thin. I have a terrible avoidance to working out with a lot of people around. I’m extremely self conscious and hate feeling like people are watching me. A smaller seized gym, like this one, is deal for me!

After 30 minutes of cardio, Beast and I usually hit the pool and use the water weights for strength training. We are usually the only people in the pool at that point, so no “weirdness” about donning a swimsuit! I have to admit, I’ve been feeling so much more energetic since we began our new exercise routine. The first two trips to the gym were not so pretty. After doing cardio and then swimming, I literally dragged myself out of the swimming pool. I felt like I weighed a million pounds and I could not muster the strength to pull myself up the swimming pool steps. I forcefully pulled myself out and crawled to my towel on my knees. That’s what zero physical activity for so many years will do to you. I truly felt ashamed of myself at that moment. At 27 years of age I should be able to run a marathon, not run out of breath walking up one flight of stairs!

I have always been “fluffy”, and would really like to lose at least 5 dress sizes in a year. In order to push myself to achieve this goal, I plan on ordering my dress in the next few weeks. It’s easier to take the dress in than to add to it. Every time I take a look at that beautiful creation hanging in my closet, it will give me the inspiration I need to walk that extra mile, or skip that tempting dessert.

Included in this new, healthy lifestyle, is a new, healthy eating plan. Ben and I have been choosing healthier meals and trying our hardest to avoid fast food. Yesterday we completed our first “healthy” shopping trip. We decided that we were going to choose items that we could use to make quick and healthy meals after our gym workouts. During the first week of working out, we were prone to heading to his house and eating 2 cups of ramen noodles a piece for dinner. One cup or ramen alone packs a whopping 380 calories. Definitely not the healthiest of dinner choices. Our shopping trip yesterday consisted of weight watchers cheese, 45 calorie bread, tuna in water, chicken breast, skim milk, whole grain pasta, carb chopper tortillas, wasa crackers etc. Using a wonderful book I picked up at Borders called “Hungry Girl 200 under 200”, we planned out a week’s worth of healthy and filling meals (including snacks) for about $45. Not bad, right?

To track all of my progress, I’ve started using a great website called It’s completely free and allows you to track your meals and exercise on a daily basis. An added bonus of this site is the water tracking tool at the top of the page. It’s a nice little reminder to try to drink 64 oz of water per day. Spark People also offers customized menus and exercise regimes if you need the extra help to get started or keep going. Another bonus is the forums where you can chat with other people who are trying to lose weight as well. You can choose which forums you want to participate in (ex: 20-something with 100+ lbs to lose), and get support from moderators and other participants. It’s a website that makes you feel like you’re surrounded by friends…and that’s a pretty nice feeling! One thing I really liked is that the meals that are created for you using the meal planner (which you can customize to your lifestyle, ex: vegan, low sodium).

Right now I feel like I can really reach my goals by my big day! I know that with all the online resources available (especially the free ones!), I have all the tools I need to fit into my wedding dress in a little less than a year!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

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