By Madeline Grimm
So, it happened. You’re engaged! And you are starting to plan your dream wedding. The flowers, the venue, the cake — it all has to be perfect. And suddenly, you find yourself seeking out ways to make yourself as perfect as the day will be.
Well, I have some news for you: you are perfect the way you are. Seriously! The only thing that should be different about you on your wedding day is your last name. I have gathered a few fun, non-diet-driven wellness tips to have you feeling great pre-, during and post-wedding. That being said, these tips are applicable for everyone, no matter your relationship status.
1. Ditch the crash diets
I’m sorry to break it to you, but the crash diets didn’t work then and won’t work now. Instead of hopping on Pinterest and searching for the quickest way to drop 10 pounds in two days — which is unhealthy and scientifically impossible — focus on making small, healthy additions to your diet rather than subtracting out. Center your meals around nutrient-dense foods such as veggies, fruits, whole grains, lean meats and healthy fats that leave you fully satisfied rather than deprived. Do not restrict or cut out any food group in the name of health because it will only leave you wanting it more. A diet won’t make your day any more special, but creating healthy boundaries with yourself and your nutrition will set you up for a lifetime of body peace and bliss.
2. Relieve Stress through joyful movement
Wedding planning can be an incredibly stressful undertaking. To help relieve some of the jitters and foster habits you can carry with you for the rest of your happily-married life, take time to move your body in ways that make you feel good. Exercise should never be for self-punishment or driven by calories burned. Take a zumba class, unwind with yoga, wake up early and get a brisk walk in before the hecticness of your day begins. There is no right way to move, so don’t be afraid to experiment. Do it because you love your body and all it does for you.
3. Wear the dress, don’t let the dress wear you
Your wedding day is exactly that — a day. Sizing down to your “goal” dress or simply buying a dress you don’t love for the sake of fashion will most likely end in turmoil rather than success. Choose a dress you can comfortably dance all night in. Choose a dress that accentuates your curves and edges. Choose a dress that fits you just the way you are. You are absolutely beautiful in the skin you are in as a bride-to-be, so wear the dress you love, don’t let the dress wear you.
4. Eat on your wedding day
As hectic as the day can be, don’t forget to eat. No one likes a hangry bride, and you will be so much happier and energy-filled if you allow yourself to eat. Have your bridesmaids prep a tasty charcuterie board to nibble upon during hair and make-up. Don’t skip out on the wedding desserts, either. This is your day, so have your cake and eat it, too.
I hope these tips help you feel good on your wedding day and beyond. Life is so much more fulfilling without diets and calorie counting. Soak up every sweet moment of your wedding day — eats, treats, drinks and all.
Madeline Grimm holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition from Southeast Missouri State University and is currently a dietetic intern at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee. She is a soon-to-be registered dietitian who integrates scientifically-backed nutrition principles with a body-positive, health-at-every-size approach to wellness.