February 13, 2008

Wedding Weight

Posted in Weight and Exercise at 11:46 am by Jess

 I thought that when Jonathan proposed to me a magical door would open. I would step through that door, and as if some invisible curtain or cape descended down upon my shoulders while I passed the threshhold, I would emerge on the other side in the land of Easy Weight Loss.  Then Jon proposed.  Nothing happened. I kept eating like I always had, splurging like I wanted, and in general, feeling no different. I went home at Christmas and went dress shopping. I chose a dress which was tight enough to make breathing uncomfortable. “You’ll lose five pounds and it will fit like a gem,” said my mother, said the seamstress, said everyone. Umm, but I have yet to lose that weight. (I did not choose that dress in order to make me lose weight – I have heard enough horror stories about that and strongly urge you to choose one that fits when you choose it)

I know I’ll probably eventually lose the weight out of stress, the sooner the date grows near. But in the meantime, I’m mad! I have only heard stories of dramatic weight loss: Ten, Twenty, Forty pounds! It was clear to me from these stories that being engaged did something, something unexplainable, and something magically, fantastically certain.

The real problem? I’m still not eating that different. (But ahem, where is the magic cape that makes me want to eat less?)  When I was standing in the too-tight dress I thought to myself, “What do I love more: Ice Cream or this Dress?” The answer was obviously the dress, right that second. However, if my mom had been standing behind me with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Caramel Sutra, I might not have bought the dress. I might have been honest.

I am a little pissed that I the magic cape missed its target. It’s obviously drifting around Geneva, or has landed on some already-blessed-by-her-European-ancestry toothpick on Rue de Rive who does not deserve it! Yet, I have a trick up my sleeve. I have a gym pass. So what I cannot do with my diet, I am making up for at the gym. I have been going five times a week, an hour a day. I’m not psycho about it. I take the day of when I feel too tired. Somedays I simply walk to Geneva and take the bus home. But, after downing a pint of Not-Quite-Sutraesque (but orgasmic to me in its very existence as being iced cream) Caramel Movenpick, I realized I needed to amp up my workout if I wasn’t going to slim down my portions very easily.

I used to do a steady walk for 60 minutes and barely break a sweat. Running was out of the question: I have hip and knee problems and cannot last ten minutes anymore. The work out wasn’t even satisfying. Then I stumbled upon an article about intervals. And truly, it’s where it’s at. Now I sweat. Sometimes handfuls, sometimes buckets, but I always sweat. ialways feel sore, but invigorated, accomplished. I’m oh-so-oh-so-slowly losing weight. And I’m going to keep eating ice cream. I love it more than the dress.
 The other day, NearlyWed wrote this pertinent post questioning the stress of wedding weight loss. My favorite line was ” as soon as I introduced “some (empahsis on “some”) wholegrain breads” in Phase 2, I was, ahem, toast. Bring on the baguettes.” because I am an all-or-nothing gal myself.
Personally I think that you should approach the pre-wedding months with acceptance of yourself and with a balance. The man who is marrying you is marrying you how ever you look now, the day he proposed, and all the days/months/years before that. But we are not working out for his benefit are we? Most of us are thinking about the form-fitting gown, the photographs, and the hundreds of eyes bearing down on us for an entire day. If that’s not motivation, I don’t know what is.
The event is great motivation, yes. If you’ve got thirty pounds to work off, then this is a great jump start. However, some brides become obsessive about losing weight in this period, and lose twenty pounds when they really shouldn’t lose more than 5. This gets into a troubled area of Gym-Obsession. That is not a healthy habit, and you might end up weak and tired on your wedding day to boot!

Some things to consider when you are starting your Pre-Wedding Excercise Routine
~ Target Areas
~Increasing the weights, sets, tempo and frequency gradually over time
~ Be patient. First you might gain weight, because your body is adjusting.

~ Balanced Meals, more protein and carbohydrates, less sugar, as you being to up the tempo or frequency of your workouts. Above all, Eat Enough. you may not be a Bridezilla, but you might find yourself turning into one if you haven’t eaten in six hours and you were at the gym sweating hard for an hour of that.
~Allow yourself to splurge, in moderation.
With luck, these habits will remain after the wedding, as life-long habits, because they are good ones, balanced and healthy ones.


1 Comment »

  1. emily said,

    ice cream or dress? why that is the hardest question on earth! I too have been trying to curb my appetite and attempt to rid of body fat and actually obtain some muscles. but the date of change as been postphoned many many times.

    what advice do you have for people who hate the gym and can’t say no to hagen daaz, or popcorn, or cake?

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