Surprise! Valentine’s Day is not the most popular day for engagements. According to a Facebook study, that distinction belongs to Christmas Eve, followed by Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and—finally—Cupid’s victory lap on February 14. By the end of February, newly-betrothed couples are in full-on planning mode. Whether there’s a long or short engagement ahead, February is also the start of a major fitness push, with brides and grooms starting to prep for the big day.
It’s easy to fall into unhealthy habits if you start your wedding body revamp without defined goals or strategies. No matter what role you play in upcoming nuptials—star, supporting cast, or audience—you’re likely to achieve your goals with smart planning up front.
The first step is set specific, measurable, achievable, rewarding, and timely (SMART) goals. “I want to get in shape” is a vague pre-wedding goal. A SMART goal is, “In six months, I want to be able to run a seven-minute mile.” There’s always room for improvement, so it’s hard to recognize what you’ve already achieved unless you previously established a measure for success. By setting SMART goals, you can gauge your performance and adjust your expectations along the way.
Create a contingency plan
Let’s say, for example, your wedding workout routine includes daily trips to the gym. No matter how committed you may be, life may get in the way. Anything from travel to car trouble to family commitments. While you may not be ready to build a full gym at your home, keeping small pieces of equipment around can help you stick to your exercise plan. The most versatile option for a full-body workout is the TRX Suspension Trainer. To supplement the Suspension Trainer, consider some of the TRX Functional Training Tools, like resistance bands or mini-bands. They’re affordable, compact, and easy to pack in a suitcase when you’re on vacation or a business trip.
Don’t wait to think about food
If part of your pre-wedding plan is adjusting the foods you eat, avoid procrastinating in meal prep. Set aside time each week to shop for groceries, search for recipes, and prepare dishes for the week ahead. Create a food plan to optimize your workouts and your fitness goals, or consider meeting with a nutritionist to determine what (and how much) you should be eating for peak performance. Otherwise, use common sense. Skip the junk food and sugary drinks, and focus on nutrient rich options.
Mix it up
When you repeat the same workout, day after day, your body learns to be more efficient in performing those movements, meaning you burn fewer calories. There’s an easy solution: change your routine. To add variety to your workouts, download workout videos that you can follow from your phone or computer. It’s an affordable alternative to hiring a personal trainer, and the videos go wherever you go.
Focusing on your fitness before a wedding will make you feel happy, energized, and ready for the big day. Use this occasion to commit to a healthy routine; it’s a gift you can give yourself that will last far longer than the toaster on your wedding registry.