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How To Feel Picture Perfect

 

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by AllSeated. I will receive compensation for this post but as always, all thoughts, experiences and opinions are my own.

Ever look back at photos and recall your thoughts or see things in yourself that no one else can sense from the picture?

Maybe you remember what you ate right before taking the picture or you are smiling even though you remember being sad.

If you recall my post introducing you to AllSeated (simplify your event planning by organizing and keeping track of your guest list, floor plan and seating arrangement in one place with instant access from anywhere), I shared a picture with you from my wedding day.

wedding dress

What you can’t tell from the picture is that only two weeks prior to my wedding day, my dress needed some unplanned alterations.

You see, during the months leading up to my wedding, I was dealing with amenorrhea.

While I did get my cycle back to normal roughly four months before my wedding, it takes quite a bit of time for the body and metabolism to regulate and adjust.

I wasn’t supposed to try my dress on again when I picked it up but something told me just to do so before leaving the bridal salon.

Thankfully I did because the seamstress needed to remove the cups that were sewn into the bodice in order for the dress to zip and button on up.

Hello hormones and screwy metabolism.

I may have gained a little weight from the time of the original fitting to my actual wedding day but I still loved the way I looked.

I can even reflect on those photos now, years later, fondly…even if I am divorced.

Weddings, Bar Mitzvahs and other big events in our lives often lead people to the land of extreme diets, fad weight-loss plans and intense exercise regimens in an effort to look as perfect as possible.

Most of the Wedding Dress Fad Diets lead to unhealthy behaviors, added stress and binge eating.

Not to mention, even if you are able to achieve the figure you are looking to portray in the photographs, what happens when you give up the rigid routine?

I have seen it happen. Women follow some restrictive diet and exercise plan, lose a significant amount of weight for their big day only to revert to old habits, gain all of the weight back (if not more) and then hate looking at their wedding albums.

Of course they do. The albums are loaded with pictures of a person they barely recognize as themselves thereby making their current self feel all sorts of terrible for not being as thin as they were in the photos.

how to feel picture perfect for your big event

Notice I say How To Feel rather than How To Look.

I did that on purpose.

It is my belief that learning to feel pretty is the key to developing a higher level of confidence which plays out in every area of your life, including your appearance.

When you can honestly feel in your heart that you are pretty enough, thin enough and good enough, when you can feel your self-confidence, that’s when you can accept yourself as you are, which is perfect.

It’s not about a dress size or getting yourself to appear as tiny as possible – because that may or may not be realistic, achievable or sustainable and certainly isn’t the definition of perfection.

Of course, they are ways to assist you into feeling perfect without the added stress of a restrictive diet since the last thing you need while planning an event is any more stress….

*Hydration*

Ever notice how much better you feel and how great your skin looks when you consume more water?

Staying hydrated is essential not just for quenching your thirst but for glowing skin as well.

When you are dehydrated, your skin shows it. Wrinkles appear deeper and your skin begins to look older than you really are.

Making sure you drink enough water to stay hydrated will immediately help to minimize and soften those creases and fine lines as well as provides you with that healthy glow you want to see in your photos and mirror each day.

Add in your fruits and vegetables (especially berries which are loading with the antioxidants known to fight off the free radicals) and you are well on your way to slowing down and possibly reversing the signs of aging that show on the skin.

*Nutrient-Dense Foods*

Trading in your processed foods, including those diet plans which provide you with packaged meals and snacks, for fruits and vegetables, complex carbs like sweet potatoes, brown rice and quinoa, good fats found in avocado and nut butter with lean protein, allows you to eat an abundance of food without feeling deprived, restricted or hungry.

When you fuel your body well, you feel well. And when you feel well, you look well.

There’s a reason healthy looking people keep drinking those green smoothie juice things often referred to as “Glowing Green Smoothies” or why I eat “Power Bowls” – the ingredients really make you glow and really give you energy.

Click here for a glowing green smoothie recipe and here for power bowl ideas.

*Exercise*

Just because there is a ring on your finger or a Bar Mitzvah date approaching on your calendar does not mean you suddenly need to train for your first marathon in order to get into shape.

Simply incorporating thirty minutes a day of an exercise you can enjoy and maintain is enough to lower stress levels, strengthen your muscles and possibly lose weight in the process.

You can start by walking, join the gym and test out some group fitness classes, try Pure Barre (since I love it!), take up running or an at-home workout routine – whichever you choose, do so because you enjoy how it makes you feel.

Exercise produces endorphins which make you feel good. It is cheaper than therapy, better than a pill and lowers your stress levels naturally.

Stress shows on your face. Stress raises those cortisol levels and can even lead to weight gain.

We don’t want any part of stress so get yourself moving in order to relax.

Remember, little changes lead to big results.

start stop keep

Everyone wants things to happen for them yesterday. Thinking you can drop twenty pounds quick is quite a task to take on, not reality and will make you mean and hungry.

The Start, Stop, Keep approach is great for getting you to make small, attainable changes and goals which you can adjust and reevaluate each week. Click here to learn more.

Planning an event can be stressful but no reason to make it worse by placing unrealistic expectations on your appearance.

A little organization combined with a healthy and balanced lifestyle is enough to give you the positive energy and confidence to get you through the planning, feeling pretty for the pictures and enjoying the cake taste testing appointment.

I mean, what’s the point in having a big, fancy event if you are going to extreme diet and skip sampling the cake options? All those cake flavors and frosting varieties?

Don’t forget to check out the AllSeated website to learn more about managing your guest list, RSVP’s and seating charts all in one place with instant access from anywhere at any time.

allseated

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How often do you look through old pictures?

Do you notice your skin looks different when you drink more/less water?

If you are married or about to get married, please tell me about your wedding cake! Mine was chocolate cake with chocolate fudge filling with white frosting on the outside not that I wanted it that way because I prefer everything chocolate.

 

 

 

 

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  • Susie @ SuzLyfe July 29, 2014, 6:43 am

    My wedding cake was a combination of a blueberry limoncello cake and strawberry shortcake-> strawberry lemonade. Limoncello sponge, white chocolate butter cream, fresh strawberries, limoncello layer. Amazing and was a good fit for everyone! Plus we had chocolates, so don’t you worry about that.
    Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Token Creek Eco-InnMy Profile

  • Alycia July 29, 2014, 8:40 am

    You look gorgeous in that pic! I was married at 19 (still married 15 years later) and I love to look back at my pictures. Those are the only ones of myself that I like . . .hair and makeup does wonders! 🙂

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:43 pm

      Aw thank you…I love looking at my pictures too (even if I am not still married lol)….Totally agree – hair and makeup does do wonders and is so much fun.

  • Alexis @ Run Crush July 29, 2014, 8:59 am

    I love how your goal list has a section for goals you want to keep! I feel like I often read things that are focused on the little CHANGES you can make, which is great, but there should be a place for us to be proud of the healthy things we already do. I chug water like nobody’s business, and it should be a healthy habit that I’m proud to maintain. I definitely notice when I’m not drinking enough water, and my skin does feel tighter and itchier.
    Alexis @ Run Crush recently posted…Workout Recap 7.21 – 7.27My Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:42 pm

      OMG me too! The itchy feeling from not hydrating enough is the worst. Sometimes I wonder how it can even be that I need more water but my skin always lets me know.

  • Davida @ The Healthy Maven July 29, 2014, 9:07 am

    I look back on old pictures on occasion but my “awkward phase” is still not so far in the past that it still makes me cringe! Why didn’t anyone tell me I had a unibrow?! But hey, I felt great at the time so it’s all good 😉
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted…Gluten-Free Cherry CrumbleMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:41 pm

      OMG the awkward phase pictures. I keep hoping my son won’t have one but we all know that it is part of growing up.

  • Lish July 29, 2014, 9:35 am

    I have so much dress anxiety now that I have actually ordered my dress. They are actually custom making it to fit my body, but I’ve been off running for the last 4 months and my body is definitely not how it normally is. So…who knows what I will be like when it comes in December!!! Ahhh! Thanks god for alterations.
    In all seriousness though – these are great tips and so true – especially the water one – I see/feel such a major difference when I am fully hydrated.

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:41 pm

      You really need to check out AllSeated if you haven’t for your wedding! Alterations totally save the day. Even if you start running again and your body changes, they will make that dress fit perfectly!

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets July 29, 2014, 10:43 am

    You are a beautiful bride.

    I actually think I look way better now than I did in my wedding pictures. I was dieting back then the only way I knew how at the time: low fat, low calorie and it didn’t work (shocker). Now I eat lots of nutrient dense food with buckets of water and a side of chocolate and I feel better as a result. Eat well = feel well.

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:37 pm

      Aww thank you….I am with you – back then, eating “healthy” to me was all about low fat, low calorie. I didn’t know much about the importance of nutrient dense foods and just read labels for calorie content. I eat much more now than I did then and I swear I am leaner, healthier and probably smaller in size to my former 23 year-old self.

  • Amanda @ .running with spoons. July 29, 2014, 12:56 pm

    You WOULD manage to tie chocolate cake into this 😛 Love it! And I love these tips, too. I definitely think that feeling good on the inside translates to looking good on the outside, and that plenty of good food, exercise, and water help make that happen. Lots of water is a MUST for me. Not only does it make my skin and hair look better, but it also keeps me energized and helps things move along nicely… if you know what I mean 😉
    Amanda @ .running with spoons. recently posted…. blueberry muffin breakfast bake .My Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles July 29, 2014, 1:35 pm

      I can tie chocolate cake into anything lol. But really, throwing a big party, planning a big event is all about the food. At least when I make a party it is. Just wait until my son’s Bar Mitzvah. I have already looked into the menu options and ensured that the right amount of cakes and goodies are available.

  • Kay July 29, 2014, 1:16 pm

    Ah perfectly worded that feeling of looking back on yourself to a person that’s not even you.. exactly how I feel about when I was underweight.. it makes me feel the most confusing mix of emotions to look at that version of myself! And I feel like I ruined all those beautiful pictures because I’m virtually unrecognizable so I can’t use them anymore!