Here Comes The Bride: Fit. Toned. Fabulous.

I don’t believe in diets. They’re too restricting and don’t look at the long term. Instead, I believe in creating a lifestyle, something sustainable that can be practiced throughout the rest of your life.

Eat real food, not foods that are low calorie and low fat. Eat food that is unprocessed and as close to its natural form as possible.

Hunger means your body needs nutrients. When hunger hits, eat food that is nutrient-dense. These foods are usually lower calorie and keep you fuller longer! Fruits and vegetables are a great go-to; not only will these nutrient-dense, low calorie foods help you lose body fat, but they will also help your skin look more radiant!

While most pre-wedding advice recommends doing lots of cardio, mine consists of lifting weights. Lifting will not make you bulky; that’s a misconception. It will simply make you more toned and burn fat more efficiently than cardio.

Most importantly: just take care of yourself! Not only will you look better, but you will feel better physically and emotionally as well. Your motivation shouldn’t just be to look good on your best day but to be the healthiest version of you on your big day!

I always recommend that if you need help getting started, whether it be with nutrition or exercise, consult a professional to get you on the right track.

No. 1: Squats

Stand with your head facing forward and your chest held up and out, then place your feet shoulder-width apart or slightly wider. Extend hands straight out in front of you, then squat down like you’re sitting in an imaginary chair. Lower down so thighs are as parallel to the floor as possible—with your knees over your ankles—and press your weight back into your heels. Keeping your body tight, bring yourself back to the standing position. Do 20 reps.

No. 2: Push-Ups

Assume a facedown position on the floor, keeping your feet together, with your weight on your chest. Position your hands palms-down on the floor next to your shoulders with your elbows pointed towards your toes. Raise yourself using your arms, with your weight supported by your hands and the balls of your feet, until your arms are fully extended. Make a straight line from your head to your heels. Slowly lower back down just above the floor, then repeat. Do 15 reps.

No. 3 Leg Lifts

Lie on your back on a mat on the floor with your legs extended straight in front of you. Place your hands underneath your lower back so that your pelvis is supported. Slowly raise both legs simultaneously toward the ceiling, pressing your thighs together and keeping your legs straight. Lift until your hips are fully flexed and you can’t go any higher with straight legs, then lower back down to the floor. Do 15 reps.

No.4 Dips

With the bench perpendicular to your body, turn away from the bench and hold on to its edge. Extend your legs forward, bent at the waist. Lower your body by bending your arms while leaning forward and dip down until your shoulders are below your elbows. Lift your body up by straightening your arms, then lock your elbows at the top. Do 20 reps.

No. 5 Squat Jumps

Stand with feet shoulder width and knees slightly bent, then bend your knees and lower down to a full squat position. At the bottom of the squat, quickly rise straight back up, bringing your knees toward your chest in midair until your thighs touch your torso. Release your legs and land softly on the toes, then lower feet onto ball, arches, and heel. Descend into the squat again for another explosive jump. Do 10 reps.

No. 6: Lunges

Stand with your upper body straight and core engaged, with your shoulders back and relaxed and your chin up. Step forward with one leg, lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle, with your front knee directly above your ankle. Make sure the other knee doesn’t touch the floor and keep your weight on your heels as you push back to standing position. Repeat, switching sides. Do 15 reps.

No. 7: Bicycles

Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Put your hands behind your head with fingers locked together, then bring your knees in towards your chest and lift your shoulder blades off the ground. Straighten your right leg out to about a 45-degree angle to the ground, turning your upper body to the left and bringing your right elbow towards your left knee. Return to center and switch sides to do the same motion on the other side for one rep. Do 10 reps.

No. 8: Calf Raises

Stand on a ledge, curb, or step with your feet shoulder-width apart, heels hanging off the ledge, and the arches of your feet resting on the edge. Raise yourself up onto the tips of your toes, then lower your ankles down as low as you can towards the ground before coming back up again and repeat. Do 15 reps.

No. 9: Bridges

Lie on your back with your hands at your sides, knees bent, and feet flat on the floor under your knees. Tighten your abdominal and buttock muscles. Raise your hips to create a straight line from your knees to shoulders. Squeeze your core and pull your belly button back toward your spine, holding for 20 to 30 seconds before lowering back to your starting position. Do 15 reps.