Where I was: I have never been someone that lived at the gym, ate particularly healthily, or really even had any sort of food guilt. I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, and was lucky in the fact that frankly I wasn't a lot bigger than I was! But after testing for fairly high-cholesterol (thanks, cheese) and feeling really out of shape after a (very) long winter hibernating indoors, I knew it was time to make a change, and what better excuse to make it than arguably the biggest and most photographed day of my life. But I also knew that I wasn't willing to starve myself, drink only juices for weeks, or spend hours at the gym everyday to do it. I needed something that was sensitive to my busy schedule and also didn't leave me starving at the end of the day.
My goals: When I decided to get going in late May/early June, I wasn't overweight by any means. I was about 123-125 pounds depending on the day, and wanted to lose a little bit of weight, but mainly really tighten and tone every part of my body.
The 5 things that got me there:
1. Eat Healthy: At the end of the day, losing weight is really all about what you put in your mouth. Luckily at the beginning of this process, my bridesmaid Erin (who is a clinical dietitian), gave me a pretty comprehensive run-down of what I should be eating to reach my goals. This meant a certain number of calories per day, which I downloaded the MyFitnessPal app to track. Every time I eat something during the day, I log it into MyFitnessPal, and it tells me exactly how many calories are in it, so at the end of the day I end up with a nice daily log of my total, which I try to keep as close to my goal number of calories as possible. And while at first this was excruciatingly hard to stick to (just ask josh what kind of mood I was in for that first week), it was really just because of what I was eating. You learn quickly that if you want to have a side of fries and a couple bloodys at brunch that's completely fine, but then you are already at half of your calorie intake for the day so you wind up being pretty hungry later when you are only allowed a small second meal. Or if you want to add cheese, croutons and a few tablespoons of olive oil to your salad that's fine too (and I always did), but then that healthy salad just turned into a very unhealthy salad. So I learned fast that you can eat much more if the food you are eating is healthy. And this may be super obvious to most people, but having never really looked at labels or cared about it before, this part was a total game changer for me! Adding foods to my app and seeing how many calories are really in that cup of pasta sauce or scoop of ice cream were really eye-opening. One of the best things I did was sign up for Boston Organics bi-weekly veggie delivery, which makes it so easy to eat healthy. We still do shop for the basics like milk, cheese, and meats, beans etc. but other than that we pretty much live off our weekly goodies from that box. That includes making most of my own lunches (which makes it so much easier to calorie count), and when I don't make lunch, buying it from a chain like Pret a Manger, Au Bon Pain, B. Good, or Hale & Hearty where they include the calories right on the shelves or the menu.
Brynn for the workout piece. She pointed me to BeachBody's "21 Day Fix" program, and I am totally obsessed with the workout videos. They all can be done with very little equipment (just a couple sets of weights and a mat), very little space, (I do them in the little area right in front of our TV), and very little time (30 minutes a day). I've tried several workout videos in the past, but I think the fact that these videos really mix up the workouts and are only 30 minutes is what really helped me stick to them this time. Taking 1-2 hours out of your day to work out can be tough but generally, you always have just 30 minutes to spare! Since they are DVDs, it's also been easy to travel with them and squeeze one in no matter how busy our summer weekend schedule has gotten. I've popped in a DVD in my parents' basement, in hotel rooms when traveling for work, and multiple times up in Vermont when I ran in from the beach during lunchtime to squeeze a workout in (while still in my bikini!) before heading right back out into the water.
Brynn, and ultimately being held accountable for sticking to the plan every day. Since I'm doing everything at home, I also love that joining this program doesn't mean sacrificing time spent with josh, who is always there cheering me on, laughing at me, snapchatting videos of me :/. or sometimes even joining in! When you are in a relationship, working out can often be such a solo sport, but I love that whether it's through finding new healthy recipes, cooking, or jumping around in our living room, I've been able to involve him ever step of the way.
^ how I look most mornings after my video ;)
^ P.S. in case you were wondering, Mac is also "shedding for the wedding," and often joins right in underfoot during my workouts. :)