Working Out the Wedding Jitters

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A wedding-day workout can be the best idea ever.  Or the worst.

A morning workout in step with your regular exercise routine, such as yoga or a 3-mile run, can “give you some normalcy and relieve stress on your wedding day,” says Lisbeth Levine, co-author of “The Wedding Book: The Big Book for Your Big Day” (Workman, 2008). “It can both energize and calm you.”

But if you don’t regularly work out and are simply trying to sweat off a few extra calories before the ceremony, now’s not the time to starts, Levine notes.

Exercise during your engagement period is a different story. “It’s a great time in your life to make some positive changes,” says Christi Masi, creator of “The Healthy Bride’s Bootcamp Workout” DVD. “There’s nothing quite so motivating” as a wedding, she says.

Masi advises brides to realistically look at what they hope to lose and the number of weeks before the first dress fitting — not the wedding date. “It takes a lot to lose more than a pound or two a week,” she says. “You have to change a lot of behaviors to make that happen.”

Significant change is possible but shouldn’t require an unhealthy situation, Masi adds. Wedding planning is stressful enough — exercise should ease stress, not add to it.

Motivation To Get Moving

Setting attainable milestones with rewards, and working out with a buddy, such as one of your bridesmaids, are good ways to keep a fitness plan moving. “Having other people around doing the same thing is extremely motivating,” she says.

For brides in a pinch, Masi recommends burning calories quickly by working against gravity, such as by climbing stairs and hills or increasing the treadmill incline.

Bride should continue their fitness plan post-honeymoon. “Weddings change brides from couch potatoes to recreational athletes,” Masi says. “Focus on what comes next.”

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