Getting in shape for the big day is something that most brides will strive for, but the process of exercising and changing your eating habits needn't be all doom and gloom.
Fitness expert and personal trainer Scott Laidler has shared his advice with HELLO! Online and makes the point that drastic weight loss is not the goal, but building up core strength is.
What foods should you totally avoid? How can you stop yourself reaching for the cake? And is juicing really the way to shed pounds? Read on for Scott's top ten tips.
1. Start training ten weeks before the big day. The lead-up is so stressful that I try to get brides training early and then to peak at two weeks before the wedding, which they can maintain until the day.
2. Use a personal trainer. I usually get brides to do a combination of strength training and high-intensity cardio exercises three times a week.
3. Walk or cycle four times a week. I ask brides to do walking or cycling at very low intensity, so low that it's not really exercise, it's just activity and it keeps you in the fat-burning zone. You can do it with your partner and turn it into a light couples' exercise.
4. Don't aim for drastic weight loss. One of the most common mistakes I see is brides cutting down on calories and therefore losing metabolism, power, strength and energy — all of which you need as it's such a stressful period. Missing out the strength training and just focusing on losing weight is a big mistake because you want to be toned and athletic and maintain that for your honeymoon. It's more about composition change.
5. Avoid high glycaemic index foods. Try and cut down on foods such as white rice, white bread, white pasta and replace them with quinoa, brown rice and sweet potatoes to keep the blood pressure balanced.
6. Control your fruit intake. Fruit is very good for you but some fruit can be negative from a composition change perspective. It's best to eat after a workout and see it as a reward. The sugar will replenish you and deliver the nutrients to your damaged muscles. Having one juice a day is ideal as it's great for your skin and gives you that extra vitality. Orange, carrot and cinnamon is an easy, quick combo to make every day. However I wouldn't recommend going on a full juicing diet and doing it as a detox because you lose a lot of muscle and strength.
7. Be disciplined with yourself. For brides who have a sweet tooth, I'd say really try and cut out the cakes and pastries. Priority wise, the lead-up to the wedding is the one time where it really counts. You have ten weeks to peak at a certain date. Measure up how good that cake is going to make you feel in comparison to your wedding photos which will stay with you for the rest of your life. Think about that when you reach for the cake. If you really struggle, some chocolate can be quite healthy so you can have that as a treat after a workout.
8. Work out with your bridesmaids. Get your friends to exercise with you and give them the goal of looking great in their dresses too. The lead-up is full of social activities so also Let people know beforehand when you'll be working out, so that you can warn them and say, 'Look, I'd really appreciate it if you can support me and I'll come out, but don't expect me to drink a lot.'
9. Cut out alcohol. You don't want to be hungover or feeling groggy for workouts or take in wasted calories from alcohol. You don't want to skip your sessions because if you miss ten per cent of them, it's really detrimental to your overall aim.
10. Introduce a boot camp in the last four weeks. Your training should be a long-term process but you can do a boot camp to speed up your fat burning and if you want to do very intensive activity. But you really need to train for ten weeks and not use boot camps as a quick fix.
For more information and tips from Scott, visit his website on www.scottlaidler.com or follow him on @scott_laidler.