Getting married? Boot camp workout for brides
Are all of those wedding planning "to-dos" getting in the way of you slimming down or shaping up for the day you say "I do"? You may not have the time to go to the gym every day but with a little planning, you can exercise without even leaving the comfort of your home.
New York fitness expert Stacy Berman of Stacy's Bootcamp shares this four-move bridal workout featuring full-body exercises that will not only get you fit before your wedding but will also help relieve stress and pre-nuptial jitters.
Bridal diet tips
In addition to fitting in exercise, pay special attention to your pre-wedding diet, says Berman, who has been boot-camping women into shape for the past 15 years. Getting in shape isn't just about working out.
Focus on vegetables, healthy fats and lean protein
"The fastest way to shed weight quickly is to watch what you eat," says the fitness expert. "Make vegetables, good fats and lean proteins your primary food intake. This will help you burn fat quickly while de-bloating your body."
Resist the temptation to reach for sugary, high-carb foods in response to wedding planning stress. According to Berman, the more carbohydrates you eat the more your body tends to retain water. "Limiting the amount you take in will help you get rid of excess water weight while increasing your metabolism," she adds.
Sequence your meal sizes properly
Berman warns against skipping meals and encourages brides-to-be to eat the breakfast of a king, lunch of a queen and dinner of a peasant. "Eating larger meals earlier will allow your body to burn off the calories throughout the day and spike your metabolism," she explains. "Having a larger dinner will cause your body to store more fat because you will most likely be sedentary and not burning many calories."
Bridal boot-camp workout
"With everything else on your plate, you may not have that much time to dedicate to exercise, but all you need is 30 minutes a day of intense body-weight intervals," says Berman. "My bridal workout torches calories while working areas that are often highlighted in wedding dresses."
Each of these exercises should be done for 1 minute, repeating the circuit five times with little to no rest. This will keep your heart rate up. When done properly, you work your arms, back, abs, hips and thighs while burning fat and calories.
For extra motivation, do this workout with your groom-to-be so you're both in top wedding day shape.
Side to side push ups
Muscles worked: Chest, shoulders, triceps, upper back, core
Start position: Get on your hands and toes, or hands and knees, in a push-up position, with your hands slightly wider than your shoulders. Keep your core muscles engaged so that your hips are in line with the rest of your body.
Movement: Bend your right elbow while turning the body slightly to the left. Push back up to the top and repeat on the other side.
Perform: 1 minute
Berman's tip: If you are doing this exercise correctly, you will feel your upper back muscles working as much as your chest -- think “back fat area."
Muscles worked: Core, shoulders, legs
Hold the end of a jump rope in each hand. Jump rope for 1 minute, making sure you engage your core muscles and stay light on your feet as you jump.
Berman's tip: Avoid the "strawberry shortcake" type of jumping -- double jumping in between the turn of the rope. For each turn of the rope there is only one jump.
Side-to-side jump squats
Muscles worked: Quads, hamstrings, inner and outer thighs, glutes (think “no more saddlebags”)
Start position: Stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down so your knees are at a 90-degree angle over your ankles (not forward over your toes).
Movement: From this position, jump as far as you can to one side. Land in a squat position and quickly jump to the starting point. Repeat to the other side.
Perform: 1 minute
Berman's tip: Avoid leaning to one side as you jump and land. Be as light on your feet as possible so you use more muscles.
Muscles worked: Quads, hamstrings, glutes, core, chest, shoulders, triceps
Start position: Stand tall with your feet about shoulder-width apart.
Movement: Place your hands on the floor in front of your feet. Quickly jump your feet back so that you land in the top part of a push-up. Do a push-up, then jump your feet forward so that you are in a squat position. Jump straight up in the air and land in the deep squat position. Repeat.
Perform: 1 minute