Right now I’m really ramping up my diet and exercise in preparation for our January wedding. I don’t want to be trying to lose weight last-minute, so we started really working on a change in lifestyle about a month ago and it seems to be sticking.
You see, when I went shopping for my wedding dress, I was indecisive. I tried on 75+ wedding dresses. You guys, it was fun. I figured I’d wind up with some flattering A-line or something. Instead, I ordered my perfect dress and later found out it’s technically a “sheath” dress. Like literally two layers of fabric. I knew it was curve hugging when I tried it on but somehow the word “sheath” makes things seem so much less forgiving.
So I’m getting in shape.
The truth though? I’m scared I’m going to be one of those girls that gets in super good shape for her wedding and then immediately gains 10 pounds after. It wouldn’t shock me because I struggle to find motivation. Right now, the wedding is that motivation. Hopefully after the wedding, I’ll like how I look enough (or it will have become enough of a habit) that I just keep going with it.
I do not need to lose a drastic amount of weight but in order to be clear about my goals, I’d like to lose about 10lbs. by January. Slow and steady, nothing too crazy.
Here’s what I’m doing now.
1. Daily Workouts
I had not set foot in a gym since we moved to Philadelphia last October. I’m not proud of this but we just never found a good routine since we moved. The good news is, I have a fairly active job and I regularly walk 5 miles in the hospital and climb 30 flights of stairs (thanks iPhone 6 for tracking that for me).
These days we’re hitting the gym every day after work. The goal is to do something. Because if I have any workout mantra it is
takeout and Netflix is so much better something is better than nothing.
I’ve been wanting to try Barre workouts but since my gym membership at work is $10 and Barre classes are $185/month (WHHATTT??), I turned to my trusty fitness instructor, YouTube. I go in to the studio area, set up my iPhone with the video, and do my own fitness class.
Here are the videos I’ve been loving:
- Barre Workout with Shauna Kathleen – This video is super fast (like, the first time I could barely keep up) but you guys, I could barely walk the next day. I’ve done it at least twice a week for the last month and I really think it’s awesome.
- Barre Workout at Home by Shauna Kathleen – Similar to the above video but slower and probably better for beginners.
- Anything from FitnessBlender.
On days that I don’t do videos, I alternate between cardio machines at the gym. I wear my Polar FT4 Heart Rate Monitor because it really helps me push myself to keep my heart rate up. I swear I work harder when I’m wearing it.
As we get closer to the wedding, I plan on increasing my cardio and hopefully by then, I’ll be showing a little more toned muscle.
2. Increase my protein and never starve
I usually drink coffee and call it breakfast. I realize this isn’t the best plan and usually by lunchtime, I’m ravenous.
I was recently sent SlimQuik Pure Protein (c/o SlimQuik) and began drinking it right when I get to work (around 9am) and again at about 4pm (an hour and a half before my workout).
The idea is that if I refuel with a little protein, I’m never starving and therefore don’t overeat and have more energy for better workouts. I’m shocked by what a difference it has made, particularly with the boost in energy for my workouts.
Since I’m a vegetarian and I don’t usually make much of an effort to be mindful of my protein, the additional 20 grams of protein are also helpful as I try to build muscle.
As a side note, if you mix the SlimQuik Pure Protein in Vanilla with vanilla soymilk or almond milk, it tastes shockingly like cake batter.
3. Continue my healthy diet but cut back on takeout
I’m not good at diets because I love food and I lack self-control. That said, my regular diet is pretty healthy. I eat a ton of vegetables and rarely eat heavy carb dishes. I’m lucky that the hospital cafeteria offers an abundance of healthy options and every item has the nutritional value listed (they even have bar codes with every item, so you can scan it right in to MyFitnessPal).
Frequently made recipes:
- Quinoa Enchilada casserole – I make this once a week and it feeds us for several meals.
- Zesty Lime, Shrimp, and Avocado salad – Heaven. Enough said.
- The “Nadine Bean” salad which is a can of black beans, a diced bell pepper, diced tomato, a can of corn, diced avocado, and a homemade dressing.
- Smashed Chickpea and Avocado Salad Sandwich – I never put it on a sandwich, I just eat it plain.
I like to eat a lot of colors because different colors = different nutrients = happy body.
Basically, I’m not changing too much of my diet, though we are trying to keep our takeout habits to once a week.
Foods I cannot resist no matter what:
- Paneer Makhani from a fabulous indian takeout place in Philly, creatively named Indian Restaurant (not joking).
- Blue cheese on crackers with honey.
- Half and Half in my coffee. Because life is too short for skim milk.
- Real sugar. I don’t do artificial sweeteners. Fear of cancer and stuff.
Overall I try to stick to around 1500 calories a day or less but I don’t count calories every day and on weekends I eat what I want (i.e. freaking huge brunches).
4. Stay hydrated
Two liters a day, minimum. Usually closer to three. All I drink is coffee, water, and wine.
5. Don’t forget my daily multi-vitamin
Can we be vain here for a second? I only take vitamins to try to make my hair grow faster. And since I’m hoping for long, luscious wave by the wedding, I basically need vitamins (and a miracle).
Now help a girl out: do you have any tips for getting in shape? If you’re a YouTube fitness video fan like me, what’s your favorite?
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