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pre-wedding fitnessNaturally, every bride wants to look her best on her wedding day... and in her bikini on honeymoon! Leading up to the big day however, you may find it hard to think about this as you are bound to have other things on your mind, so we have some tips as to how to stay on track.
This is not intended as medical advice, so please ensure you consult with your GP before embarking on any diet or exercise regime.

1 - Eat Healthily

Easier said than done! When people are busy or stressed, they react in one of two ways. They either forget to eat, or comfort eat, and each is as unhealthy as the other. The only way of preventing this is to be disciplined in your eating habits – four or five small meals a day, including breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks will keep you full all day and increase your energy levels by preventing slumps in blood sugar. Make sure that you have at least five portions of fruit and vegetables included, and that the rest is made up of lean protein, such as chicken or fish, complex carbohydrates like wholemeal bread and pasta, and good fats such as olive oil, avocado or nuts.

2 - Drink plenty of water

The benefits of water are twofold. First of all, drinking plenty of liquids will keep you full and stop you from nibbling on all those unhealthy snacks. In addition, it will keep you hydrated and full of energy as well as making your skin glow and your hair shine!

3 - Hair Treatments

If you colour your hair regularly, use heat styling or are very sporty, it is likely that your hair has some damage. To remedy this, first of all get a trim to remove all split ends, then have a conditioning hair mask at the hairdressers to get it silky smooth. To add depth and shine, whether you usually colour your hair or not you could try a non-damaging semi-permanent hair colour in a shade similar to, or even the same as your own – it really does make a difference. Remember to make sure that you have a practice run with your hairdresser for the day itself, so you know you are getting exactly what you want.

4 - Correct  your posture

This might sound a bit obvious, even silly... but a great deal of people, especially women, have poor posture. Not only is this bad for your back, it can also make you appear as much as three inches shorter and seven to ten pounds heavier! To correct your posture imagine a line being drawn from the soles of your feet out through the top of your head and being pulled tight. This might be uncomfortable to maintain at first as your core muscles are not used to the sensation, but if you practice while looking in the mirror then you will be able to see the difference! To get great posture and to get that long, lean look, then why not combine this tip with number 7 (Get Regular Exercise) and take Yoga or Pilates classes?

5 - Get Enough Sleep

This one is really important, as well as being very difficult when you are so excited! If you are going to look your best and enjoy your big day and your honeymoon to the full you must make sure you are relaxed and refreshed. Experts suggest that most people need and average of seven hours sleep per night, but everyone is different – make sure you get enough for you! Do this by banishing anything stressful from the bedroom so it becomes an area of relaxation only, by avoiding strenuous exercise, caffeine and heavy meals before bedtime, and by trying to go to bed and get up at the same time each day.

6 - Cleanse, Tone and Moisturise

Your face is your main feature, it is part of what makes you, you. Your expressions, your smile, your eyes – they do say they are the windows of the soul after all. So how do you make sure your face is glowing on the day? Well, aside from following the other tips on this page and making sure you have the right makeup, it is actually quite simple. Cleanse, tone and moisturise. Make sure you always take your makeup off before you go to bed, and exfoliate a couple of times a week. Oh, and don’t forget that spf in your moisturiser, you’ll be thankful for it later in life!

7 - Get Regular Exercise

Getting regular exercise will help you if you are trying to lose weight and tone up for your wedding, and it will also make your skin and hair glow when combined with proper nutrition and adequate hydration. How do you motivate yourself if you are not used to exercising though? First of all, choose a form of exercise you enjoy. Hate to run? Don’t run then! Try swimming, or tennis, or take up belly-dancing or Yoga – whatever it is you do, make it something you enjoy and you are far more likely to stick to it. Secondly, if you do miss a session or two, don’t beat yourself up about it, after all a missed gym session or two is not a big deal in the great scheme of things. If you still need a bit of help, try sticking a picture of your wedding dress on the fridge door – the thought of how you want to look in it will get you reaching for your training shoes instead of the chocolate!

8 - Body Treatments

To keep your skin in tip-top condition, and to be sure you are going to look buffed and polished on your wedding day, don’t forget about the skin on your body. A revitalising body scrub in the shower before using body lotion on damp skin will slough off dead cells and lock in moisture, leaving your skin looking radiant. If you know that you are going to be baring a certain part of your skin in your dress, e.g. your back and shoulders in a strapless or halter neck gown, or your décolleté in a V-neck number then pay particular attention to it. Add a touch of tan (fake of course, it is safer) for a natural glow, and you are ready to go. If you have fair skin, try using one of the lotions that gradually builds up colour from about a week before the ceremony for a natural look and to avoid fake tan stains on your white dress.

9 - Manicure and Pedicure

Your hands and feet are often neglected in our beauty regimes, which is a real shame. Your poor feet have to carry you around all day and are often subjected to the indignities of vertiginous heels and viciously pointed toes – not least on your wedding day! If you don’t want them to protest make sure that you break your wedding shoes in and that you treat your tootsies to a pedicure to keep them soft and refreshed, as well as adding a lick of polish if you plan on wearing sandals. As for your hands, well they are protagonists in many of the photos on your wedding day, at the exchanging of the rings, so the last thing you want is to be caught with scraggy nails and dry skin.

10 - Relax and Enjoy Yourself

Yes, really that is the last tip! If you are relaxed and happy in your own skin on your wedding day, that will really shine through and is worth more than all of the expensive creams and luxury spa treatments in the world. So relax, enjoy, and see the results in the faces of your loved ones and in the photographs.

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