Let’s face it, planning a wedding on top of working, maintaining friendships and investing time and energy into the relationship with your fiancé can consume most of your time and result in a rushed and stressed BRIDE(ZILLA). It turns out that physical fitness not only will get you the fit & fabulous Bride Fit Body you are looking for, but also a happier and more “chill” mood. Science has confirmed the link to brain health and regular exercise. It improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative moods and by improving self-esteem and cognitive function. The benefits of just thirty minutes of moderate intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, 3 days per week are pretty impressive! They include; increased sleep, increased interest in sex, stress relief and improvement in mood. All sounds great to me! You will achieve these benefits even if you break up the 30 minutes of walking into 2 sessions of 15 minutes or 3 sessions of 10 minutes, which makes this doable! Try a 15 minute walk in the morning and after dinner and ask your man to join you, since walking together creates intimacy and is a positive habit to create that is great for your health and your relationship! Calming the Bridezilla in you will positively affect not only your health, but also your relationship. Carving out time to walk and move your body on purpose will create happiness and calmness. We tend to think we don’t have time to exercise. Use the time it takes to do a chore that you may think is a priority, but really isn’t, and let go of the need to make everything perfect. This will give you time to fit 30 minutes of walking in your schedule a few days per week. Your fiancé would choose a “chillaxed” bride over everything being “done” and “perfect,” ask him! Another suggestion is to get up 15 minutes earlier, which you can balance by hitting the pillow earlier at night. Quality and adequate sleep is super important in your ability to release fat and having positive moods so make sure you’re getting enough.
We’ve established, with the backing of science that walking alone will definitely create happiness and reduce anxiety and depression. I do want to mention that when it comes to sculpting your body and gaining strength you need to add weight training to your routine, but we’ll talk about that in more detail in a future blog. I primarily wanted to address the Bride Fit Mind now and how you can ensure increased happiness by choosing to move your body; in addition to the nutrition you feed your body. I find it amazing that what I’m about to tell you, most people, especially medical doctors, don’t know or ignore. Here it is: What you eat and nutritional deficiencies affect your physical health in addition to your mental health! What we eat and what we don’t eat has a huge impact on how we feel physically and mentally. Deficiencies in vitamin D, minerals, B vitamins and essential fatty acids, combined with an “unhealthy gut” are major contributors to depression and anxiety. Eating a nutrient dense diet and supplementing with high quality supplements greatly contribute to healthy brain. Here’s the deal; the healthier you are in your body, and brain included, the healthier and happier your relationships are. Simple but not always easy!
I mentioned an “unhealthy gut” which is the first thing to address when it comes to health & happiness. Basically, poor gut health is an epidemic since the modern world we live in is overloaded with everything that causes “leaky gut.” One of the top offenders is chronic stress, which is common, not to be confused with normal, because of our 24/7 non-stop rushed lives. Processed foods, which are usually “fake food” or “food like substances,” industrialized seed oils (corn, cottonseed, safflower, soybean), overuse of NSAIDs (pain relievers like Advil and Tylenol) and prescription medications, gluten and too much alcohol, caffeine and sugar are the reasons for “leaky gut.” This is a BIG deal because “leaky gut” will prevent you from absorbing the nutrients in your food and supplements, basically making the money you spend on high quality food and vitamins a waste, because the amazing benefits of nutrient dense food and bioavailable supplements are futile if your digestion system is not working properly. The great news is there are 5 simple things you can do to fix your “leaky gut”:
- There are products available that I like to call “gut grout.” I love GI Revive made by Designs for Health. One tablespoon per day is all you need! There are other high quality gut healers on the market that usually need to be purchased on line or through a health care provider. Drinking aloe vera juice has been shown to heal the gut health too. I always recommend products made by companies that have high quality standards when it comes to testing the purity of their products and use GMP (good manufacturing practices).
- Remove or minimize the typical offenders from your diet; processed food like pasta and bread, or anything in a box, alcohol, caffeine, sugar found in soda, juice, baked goods, bagels, cereal and hidden in “fat free” or “low fat” products. When you see “fat free” or “low fat,” run away!
- Eat boat loads of vegetables to get the amazing FIBER your gut desperately needs and is more than likely not getting!
- Take a high quality probiotic, which are called the “good” or “helpful” bacteria because they keep your gut healthy. You can get probiotics in yogurt and fermented foods. Keep in mind; low fat and fat free yogurts are not on a Bride Fit Body food list! Choose organic, full fat, and preferably made from a pastured cow plain yogurt if you eat dairy. Keeping probiotics on hand are always a good idea even if you get them in your diet. Keeping your gut healthy is the best defense from getting sick since 70-75% of the immune system is in your gut.
- Stress management! Start and end your day with some Box Breathing and gratitude. Take time for self care like regular massages and yoga. Time allotted to do activities for pure pleasure; dancing, singing, acting or anything that interests you. Girl time is important and will provide much needed laughter, which is a huge stress release. Watch some funny movies with your partner too!
In summery, to keep brideZILLA at bay and bring out the CHILLAXEDbride, move your body on purpose, heal your gut and support the health of it with “gut healers,” and nourish your body with food and supplements that feed your brain the nutrients it needs to thrive. Add in thinking positive thoughts and talk to yourself with kindness and you will have a BRIDE FIT MINDJ