Wedding Shape-up Challenge

Yesterday I finally got myself together to truly to commit to getting in tip-top shape for my upcoming nuptials on August 7.  I dabbled in P90X a few months ago and really toned up, especially in my arms.  But, I think I need to buckle-down and commit to a balanced diet and consistent exercise for the next 60 days.  Lately I’ve found numerous reasons to splurge more often than not and slacking off on the weight training.

I’ve given this a lot of thought, and I think over indulging is happening because I’m so ravenous by the time I get home.  Then once I over-do it at dinner, I go to bed soon after and that’s not good for my digestion.  Also, being ravenous is deterring me from exercising.  I did the 4:30 am exercising for a long time, but would really like to avoid that again at all cost within reason.  My plan in reality is for 58 days because I want to be successful before the wedding and I threw in my rehearsal dinner in there for good measure.

Here is my plan for the next 58 days:

– Spread calories evenly over four meals + one (150-200 calorie) snack

– Exercise for at minimum 30 minutes 6 days a week

– Complete Jillian Michael’s 30 day shred

– No more than 4 alcoholic beverages per week

-Weigh myself once each week

And here are more detailed thoughts about my plan:


Calorie counting has turned me into a maniac before, so I have to find a way to do this without tapping into my OCD and becoming a hermit because I don’t know the calorie content in restaurant foods.  Keeping all my meals the exact same calories will help with this because I can keep returning to those meals without having to meal plan way in advance or spend hours each day figuring out the calories in a cucumber.  I kid.   I don’t really think that’s a good use of my time.  For the first few days I’m going to write down what I eat, not in journal style, but as a reference so I can quickly say, “oh this and that meet my calorie requirement for a meal so I’ll just eat that again”.  Yesterday, I wrote down a bunch of things I know when added together meet my calorie requirement.  I don’t tire easily of eating the same things, so I think this will work for me.  Also, I think this strategy will keep my blood sugar more stable so I don’t do a dive bomb into food when I get home from work.  By the end of this I see having a calorie reference for all the things I typically eat in food combinations that I typically use.

I’m not going to spaz out at restaurants.  I repeat, not spazzing out.  I’m going to make the best choices I can, including eating half of large portions and trying to eat whole foods that I understand and could make myself.  I even accepted an invitation to lunch tomorrow to go to a Mexican restaurant near my office.  No spazzing occurred.


I’m not setting the bar too high with this one.  I typically exercises about an hour 4-6 times a week.  I plan to continue this.  I think it’s those 2-3 days a week that I don’t exercises that could be turned-around to make big changes.  I fully believe in rest days, but this is only for 60 days and we’ll see how it works for me.

I decided to do the 30 day shred for the next 30 days at least, because I’ve owned it for a while and have used it, but never used it the way it is intended – over the course of 30 days.  Jillian believes in it and although I don’t agree with all of her mantras, the girl looks good and I wouldn’t mind harnessing her experience to benefit my own fitness.  This conflicts a bit with my 6 day exercise goal because you’re supposed to do the 30 day shred every single day.  I plan to finish it through the recommended 30 day period, but I won’t need to supplement it one day a week with additional cardio.  After the 30 days I will figure out another specific exercise schedule for the remaining 30 days.


This limit is a good limit to have in general (for me) and will most likely mean I won’t have the occasional glass of wine on weekdays.  This is positive for two reasons: less unnecessary calories that don’t fuel my body and meeting friends briefly after work will not prevent me from exercising.

As I said before, I started this yesterday and the even calorie spreading worked like a charm.  Everyone has a different philosophy about this and I really don’t think any one person is right.  I think this might work for me. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it will work for you.  I hear healthy people say things all the time like “I tried this to see how it would work for me and it did” and another person will say something totally contradictory.  The point here is that you have to figure out what works best for your own physical and mental state.  Everyone is so different, why would we think that identical eating and exercising habits will work identically for ever person?

This is also why I’m not stating my caloric goal.  I am a short person who needs less calories than a tall person, but I am also a pretty active person who needs more calories than a less active person.  You shouldn’t compare numbers with anyone.  I’ve lost weight before and I know what I was eating at the time.  I was also a little less active so I added some to compensate for this.

I’m starting the 30 day shred with Level 1, although I know I’m perfectly capable of Level 2.  I don’t want to be too intense since I’m going to be doing this everyday.  In case you’re not familiar, there are three levels, each increasingly more difficult.  Jillian wants you to start out at Level 1, then progress to Level 2 when you feel you can.  In a perfect world, I’ll do 10 days of each.  I don’t even know what Level 3 looks like, so this should be interesting.  Another little mini goal for me is to be able to do more “boy-style” push-ups.  When I do the video now, I do 5 the regular way, then the rest are “girl push-ups” (15-20?).  I wonder if it’s unrealistic to think that I can add 1 regular push-up each day.  We shall see.

I’m  happy with this plan.  I think it’s reasonable and won’t feel overwhelming.  I’ll keep you updated so I’m held accountable, which was my main reason for blogging about it.  I’m not going to mention any numbers although I do have a number in mind as a weight goal.  I truly believe that if I give this my best effort and follow through with my plan, I’ll be perfectly happy, regardless if I see that number on the scale in 60ish days.  This brings me to the last part of my plan.  Stepping on the scale ever day turns into stepping on the scale multiple times a day to see if “it’s working”.  To discourage my neurosis, I’m holding myself to this.

I would love to hear anyone’s thoughts on my plan.  I’m always interested in hearing what has worked for others, even though this is my plan for the next 60 days.  Even though I don’t believe in modeling your habits after others, learning more about others healthy habits helps you develop your own – the reason I started reading healthy living blogs in the first place. 🙂



Filed under Thoughts

10 responses to “Wedding Shape-up Challenge

  1. Hey Kelly! I think your plan sounds great! Even though I think you look good as is 😉

    What works for me is interval training. Interval training burns more fat than training at a steady pace and keeps your body guessing. I like doing a mix of slow running with bursts of sprints. We can do this on an upcoming run if you want!

    Is the 30 day shred weight lifting or a mix of cardio too? It sounds intense.

    • Aw, you’re sweet Jen! I’m not trying to do a major overhaul, just trying to tone up and be a little leaner. I just want to know I did my best to be in good shape on my wedding day. You only get to take those photos once! 🙂

      I’d love to do some interval training with you. I do some on the treadmill, but never when I’m running outside for some reason. 30 day shred is a mix. Each level is only 20 minutes and you do two weight training circuit 2 x for each circuit, then 2 min. of cardio, then a minute of abs. That’s one circuit, you do three. Level 1 isn’t too bad, but I’m going to try to do 10 days of each.

  2. Ashley

    I think your plan sounds great as well! What is your calorie goal for the day and how much weight are you trying to lose?

    • I am particularly sensitive not to mention things like specific number 1- because it is very triggering for some people (it’s easy to compare yourself to other people when you really shouldn’t, which I mentioned in the post) and 2- because I don’t want to get hung up in the numbers. Like I said, if I’m diligent with my plan and I know that I did my best to stick to it in the present situation, then I will have met my goal, regardless of whether or not I actually hit the numbers I have conjured up in my head. Thanks for the feedback!

  3. Do what works for you! Keeping things simple has always been the key :)!

  4. Yay for an August 7th wedding! My anniversary is August 6th 🙂

    Your plan sounds great!!!
    Do you drink a lot of water throughout the day? That’s one thing that helps me out.

    • Some days are better than others but I do typically drink a good bit of water throughout the day. It’s my main source of liquid and sometimes all I drink all day besides my 1-2 cups of coffee. Thanks for the advice!

  5. Pingback: Look what I did «

  6. Pingback: Wedding Shape-Up Challenge Part 2 «

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