If there was one training goal that could turn a female client from a complaining, half-assed training, prissy ballerina: into a raging, bar bending, callous busting, hard training machine, it’s their wedding day!
Hard to believe it’s all for a day of glamour and beauty!
For this reason, one of my favourite clients to have trained is a woman getting ready for her wedding day.
As a PT, I’ve had the pleasure of training quite of few brides to be, and a few grooms as well. The fact that there is an end date to this special goal creates a sense of urgency and meaning that is very hard to replicate into any other training goal. The only problem with this is that people in this situation will source ANY information they can get their hands on in an effort to look their best. Now, this may not seem like a problem, but with the abundance of horrible advice and information you have at your fingertips, it’s very easy to get the wrong advice, waste precious time, and end up short on the day. Just pick up a trashy magazine in any news-agency, or Google search; ‘7 Day Slim-Down’, ’10 Minute Abs’, ‘Top 10 Celebrity Diets’ or ‘Beyoncé’s Booty Blasting Workout’ for a healthy serve of fitness garbage!
Get the right information from the start, set some realistic goals, and leave the trashy magazine advice to those looking for a quick fix (quick hint: there are none)!
Here’s our PPT Key Points for Smoking Hot Success:
You have the date, now you set the goals
Realistic expectations are important heading into your wedding day. Know where you’re at currently by accurately assessing your body composition. Then once you have all of that, you can begin to work out if your goals are realistic.
Setting key goals and achievements along the way will keep you motivated, on track, and moving towards that trip down the aisle!
Test and Assess
To accurately set goals, you’ll need to know where you’re at and address any potential roadblocks before they get in your way!
At PPT, we commonly use DEXA scanning to assess client progress. This will give you an extremely accurate assessment of your current fat mass, muscle mass and fat distribution (to name a few). On top of this, continuously monitoring your dietary intake, taking regular girth measurements and maybe even skin folds will help you keep track of your progress.
At the higher end of assessments, you can even look to laboratory testing! Testing things like fasting blood glucose, Vitamin D3, and a few others is a great way to potentially identify fat loss roadblocks like inflammation and insulin resistance from the start.
Ditch the Crappy Magazine Diets: Eat the right stuff for your goal
Now you won’t have to eat like a bodybuilder to get in the shape you’re after, but you will need a plan of attack. Here are a few essential boxes you must tick along the way.
- Eat enough protein but not too much: Protein is the building blocks of muscle tissue, a thermogenic food (you burn calories just by eating it), and by eating enough protein you should feel fuller for longer in between meals (and are less likely to snack). But like any food, eating too much can also be bad. Aim for around 1.4-1.6g per kg of body weight per day, or around 30% of your daily caloric intake.
- Monitor your calorie intake: Knowing how much you need to eat each day is an essential part of any fat loss plan. Just guessing what to eat could be setting you up for failure. To lose fat, you’ll need to be in a calorie deficit. Make sure you don’t go to low as this can also be a massive roadblock in your fat loss goals, and cause you to lose precious muscle in the process.
- Stick to Lower GI, whole carbohydrate sources: Sticking to low GI carbohydrates will help you control blood sugar and insulin spikes. Know that all carbohydrates were not created equal, and sticking to low GI sources is an essential step to looking great on your wedding day!
Sleep: A Weapon in the Fight for Fat Loss!
I was once given a great piece of advice from world-renowned strength coach Charles Poliquin. He said, “You’ll only ever be as lean as you are healthy”.
A big part of health improvement is a good quality, restorative sleep. There have been many studies that have even linked improved sleep alone to fat loss!
A less than optimal sleep will reduce your metabolic rate, reduce physical activity, increase calorie consumption via changes in your hunger and satiety hormones, and decrease your insulin sensitivity (making you less carb tolerant!).
Keep the late nights to a minimum, save your partying till the big day, and aim for a high-quality 8-9hrs of unbroken sleep per night!
Get Ready to Work Hard
One of the biggest misconceptions that most will make when embarking on ANY fat loss goal is how hard you’ll need to train to budge that fat. As mentioned above, most of our brides to be will be prepared to make that shift, but be warned beforehand, you’ll need bust your ass!
There are many schools of thought on what is THE BEST form of exercise or training for fat loss. Firstly, just getting up and moving is a start! Pair good nutritional planning with any form of exercise should create some change. But as we’re talking about change for the biggest day of your life, at PPT, we like to take the planned approach.
Using a structured periodized training plan in which your trainer knows what you’ll be doing day 1, all the way up to your wedding day works for us here! Using a mix of strength training, high intensity interval training, and even some aerobic work, we plan for success with our clients, with some killer workouts along the way.
To get an idea what one of our strength sessions may look and feel like (dependent on the client’s experience and fitness levels), try this high volume strength circuit next time you’re in the gym:
A1. Full Barbell Back Squat – 8-10 reps – Rest 30sec then;
A2. Medium Grip Chin Up (can be swapped for lat pulldowns) – 10-12 reps – Rest 30sec, then;
A3. Flat DB press – 12-15R – Rest 30sec, then;
A4. Full DB Squat (heels elevated slightly) – 18-20R – Rest 2mins, and then repeat another 3 times. For the full effect, be sure you use weights in which you fatigue within the 10-12 rep range. Going too light will NOT give you the results you’re after!
As you can see, getting ready for your wedding day is not as simple as joining the gym, walking on the treadmill, and following store-bought diet advice.
Attacking your goal from a smartly planned, multi-pronged approach will always be your best bet for success!
Remember, you’re only going to do this once (hopefully), don’t leave regrets and look like a smoking hot bride on your big day.
For more information on getting ready for your wedding day, be sure to contact PPT at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss our personal and group personal training options.