Well, Sweaty Bride, maybe!! These were taken yesterday after doing Level 3 of the 30 Day Shred!! Yowzers!! I moved on to that level last week, after weeks and weeks at Level 2! I wish I had some "before" shots, because my arms have improved out of sight since doing this workout DVD!
Not long to go now, friends! The wedding countdown is officially on! I have 44 days to be drop dead amazing, and hence.....
Operation Buff Bride
has been launched!
After a few weeks of discipline and fortitude, it is proving to be just what I needed!
I have a gorgeous dress to wear - not dissimilar to the one I showed you a few months ago - and even though it does fit, I know it will look even better if I give it my all between now and the wedding day!
Image found via Random Bites (as are so many other inspiring things)
So I've been running/yoga-ing/30 Day Shredding (either of the three, or a combo) every day for the last few weeks. I've also been following a pretty clean diet - as clean as I feel comfortable doing, I'm certainly not obsessive about it. I've cut back on the treats, and not eating as much cheese (sob!) and I have noticed that I don't feel as bloated after meals any more now that I've cut the dairy back. Sigh. I love cheese, but it doesn't love me. I actually get a gut when I eat it. I kid you not.
I've been eating a lot more raw vegetables, more legumes, and switched my breakfasts around so instead of a smoothie nearly every day I'm mixing it up with baked beans, or porridge, or granola, or eggs. This bride isn't going hungry - I'm just being more mindful. And in the lead up to the wedding there's been loads of social things on, so when I go out with friends I just enjoy and try to make the healthiest choice possible. Pretty simple really. It's what I already do - just better. But my hen night is coming up so maybe I'm speaking too soon!! ;)
This is what today looked like, for example:
On rising: Hot water with fresh lemon
Breakfast: Small portion of porridge with almond butter and banana
Snack: Homemade hummous with raw cucumber, broccolli and yellow pepper
Lunch: Small portion smoked tofu, vegetable and blackbean stirfry with 1 cup brown rice (leftover from last night)
Dinner: 1 wholemeal wrap with 1 vegie burger, homemade hummous, homemade baba ghanoush, sprouts, watercress, rocket, spinach, baby tomatoes and avocado
Snack: Chai latte with soy milk, strawberries
See what I mean - just good wholesome stuff. It feels great! I was planning another meal this evening, but it has been 29 degrees here today and I didn't feel like slaving over a hot stove - so vegie burgers it was!!
For the past couple of years I've let myself pretty much have whatever I like, within reason, knowing that I'll burn it off with a run or yoga, or there is plenty of room in my jeans anyway (!) but with an event like this where the photos are going to be on display forever (well, that's what they tell me! ha ha) I don't mind making a bit more effort and being a bit more aware of what I'm putting in my mouth so that I'll look good and be proud of myself. It's a good lesson really - and since I've made the effort to be more mindful, I've noticed how easy it is to just have food because it's there or because you can....learning to listen to that voice that tells you whether you're really hungry or not again is a big wake up call!
I don't think it's a bad thing that I've refocused like this, not at all. I know I've probably been having too many treats lately and have had a rather blase attitude to my fitness, and it feels good to be back to basics and making more of an effort. I'd been bored with my exercise routine for a while before getting the 30DS and my new Shiva Rea DVD - but as I reminded myself, being bored with my routine isn't an excuse for not doing anything at all!! If I'm bored, I need to mix it up!
I know that it's a bit vain to be making all this effort just so I can look good on my wedding day, but with certainly not as Spartan a regime as I had in 2006, I just would hate to put my dress on on the day and think "if only I'd just made a bit more effort".... so anyway, please don't judge me ;) I'm doing this the healthy way, and I feel very pumped and excited by the changes in how I look and feel. I've noticed lots of my favourite bloggers going back to basics lately, and so I'm joining in the fun too :)
I think anything works - if you really want it to.
Also, as I mentioned, I'm on Level 3 of 30DS!! Yeah baby!! Have any of you done Level 3?! Oh God, that last strength circuit with the walking pushups and the plank raises...I just want to die!! The plank raises absolutely CANE!! I sometimes get so much sweat in my eyes I have no choice but to drop back to the beginner moves instead of being a bad-ass, but I'm getting there! No going back!
In addition to the "buff" side of things, I've been making an effort to cultivate wellness and vitality in other areas of my life. I've been writing more, spending more time with kindred spirits, and trying to find time to practice yoga more than I had been, and not just the power vinyasas, the more quiet and thoughtful poses as well. I go for long walks every day. I listen to inspiring podcasts and uplifting music. I've booked massages and other girly things to nourish my spirit and make me feel spoiled! I've been taking better care of my hair, nails and body as a whole, making the time to do maintenance things like eyebrow waxing, etc. It's amazing what just putting in a small amount of effort will do - it really does give me such a confidence boost! And when you feel good about yourself, everything else in life seems to be so much more manageable. Well, I think so, anyway!
Tom and I have been enjoying planning the wedding together - we've done pretty much the whole thing on our own, and it really reflects who we are, which I'm so proud of. It's only a very simple, intimate affair but that was just what we wanted. I really am so excited!!!
The countdown is on!!