Where did the time go? I swear it feels like yesterday that Sissy called to tell me she was engaged and now her wedding is only two weeks away!
No. Seriously. Where did the time go?
Obviously weddings can be somewhat stressful for those of us trying to actively maintain a healthy lifestyle, what with all of that food and cake. Lots of cake. And candy, in Sissy's case, as she's having a candy buffet. Oh yes. Cake and candy.
Gird your garters, ladies and gents, 'cause it's time for another Survival Guide.
Start The Day Off Right
Y'all know I'm a huge supporter of breakfast and eat it every single day. Breakfast gives you energy to get through the day and with the right food choices it will also help keep you full through lunch (so you aren't raiding the vending machine at work or your hotel for a less-than-stellar snack).
While your instinct might lead you to want to skip breakfast and/or lunch so you have plenty of "room" for the dinner at the reception, skipping meals can actually backfire as when you do get a chance to eat you might go completely overboard from sheer hunger. Also, I don't know about you but I am definitely someone who can fall into that hangry (angry + hungry) state of mind without food and that's just not a fun wedding guest (or, well, in my case this time around maid of honor).
Dance The Night Away
The beauty of weddings is that -- if you are lucky -- you can both start and end your day with exercise. Being a bit of an early riser I fully hope to get a run in before the wedding preparations begin. If you are attending an out of town wedding, check to see if the hotel you are staying at offers a fitness facility or just run around outside in the neighborhood (keeping in mind my outdoor running safety tips!) If you're one of the bridesmaids, consider helping the bride release some pre-wedding jitters with a morning yoga class.
If exercising before the wedding isn't feasible then be sure to take advantage of that dance floor at the reception! Dancing is a great way to burn calories and have fun with family and friends.
Appraise The Appetizers
It's common to have snacks available to guests before dinner, often giving the bridal party a chance for pictures before joining everyone at the reception. Scope out the fruits and veggies and go easy on the cheese and crackers.
That being said, weddings can and usually are all day events and several hours could go by between meals or an opportunity for food, even with appetizers available. So consider packing your own emergency stash of food if you need something to nosh on before the big meal. Fruit and string cheese, maybe peanut butter sandwich or even just a couple of hard-boiled eggs. Whatever you pick, make sure protein is represented as that's what will keep you full.
Wine at the reception, champagne for the toast, beers at the local bar once the evening is over...weddings can be quite an alcohol laden event, so be sure not to drink your calories away (plus, just as no one likes a drunk bride, no one likes a drunk wedding guest either). I'm not saying you have to completely avoid alcohol all together, just set yourself a guideline. Maybe allow yourself 1-2 glasses of wine and then once you have those, that's it.
Let Them Eat Cake
Like drinking at a wedding reception, I'm not saying you have to completely avoid the wedding cake (unless you want to, of course!), just be smart. Plan for a piece of cake when you are making other food choices or use some of you Activity Points or calories earned through exercise. Even better, split a piece of cake with a family or friend sitting at your table.
If nothing else, always remember that weddings are fun and joyous events and that should be celebrated! So maybe that means letting yourself off the hook for the night and plan to get back on track the next day.
What are some of your healthy wedding reception tips?
Love from the ashes,