When you walk down the aisle, you want to feel your best. So what should you do if you belong to the couch-potato crew? Have no fear. The workout suggestions below will help you tone up while barely breaking a sweat.
1. Get It in Early
If you are a hardcore gym rat, you don’t need prompting to get in your reps and sets any time of day. However, if you’re new to regular exercise, work out in the morning before your day’s obligations interfere with your plan. This get-it-done attitude helps ensure that you don’t skip fitness when life gets busy. Studies indicate that a.m. workouts increase your activity levels throughout the rest of the day — hello, bonus.
2. Explore Your Options
If you don’t find jogging or using an elliptical machine appealing, find a form of fitness that you love. Spend some time in mindfulness meditation, contemplating what you enjoy doing — and what you dislike about movement. Do you hate getting all sweaty? Water is 800 times denser than air, so go for a stroll in the local YMCA’s pool. Your muscles will work harder, but you won’t emerge feeling like you crossed the Sahara.
3. Embrace Shorter Workouts
Did you know that working out for extended periods can hinder your weight-loss efforts? When you go for longer than 60 minutes, your body amps up cortisol production because it thinks you’re under attack. Think of exercise like Baby Bear’s chair — you want not too much or too little, but the right amount.
You can work nearly any body part in only 10 minutes. Add these sleek weight training routines to your regimen and have no fear of showing off your toned arms in that sleeveless gown.
4. Use Intervals
What if you want a more vigorous workout? Instead of going longer, try adding higher intensity intervals to your routine. You’ll gain speed and endurance while slashing your fitness time considerably. Plus, heart-pounding movements get your endorphins flowing, providing improved mental energy and clarity. You might find it less of a bear to select your bridesmaid’s color schemes when your mind feels sharp.
5. Enjoy Active Recovery Days
If your big day is approaching rapidly, you might feel tempted to hit the gym hard every day. However, doing so can lead to burnout and injury. Instead, give yourself one or two rest days per week.
Rest doesn’t mean binging Netflix on the couch, however. You can — and should — still enjoy light activities like gardening, strolling around the block or practicing gentle restorative yoga to ease muscle soreness and get you ready for your next invigorating gym session.
Get in Shape Before You Say “I Do”
You don’t have to live in the gym to get fit before your big day. The suggestions above will tone you up without undue fatigue so that you can tackle the rest of your wedding details.