2014 is the summer of lovin', as a number of celebrities have recently said 'I do.'
Jessica Simpson showed off her newly svelte figure as she walked down the aisle to wed her longtime boyfriend, Eric Johnson. Adam Levine married his model sweetheart Behati Prinsloo. And, Katie Couric wed her financier boyfriend John Molner.
Celebrities often have a team of fitness gurus to ensure their bodies are always camera-ready. Yet, that doesn't mean A-list brides, just like us regular folks, don't kick up their workouts a notch.
Every bride I know embarks on a diet and fitness regimen to look their best on their big day. After all, most bridal gowns do put the focus on shoulders and the back.
Jessica Simpson reportedly did a daily six-mile treadmill run and also went on a strict vegan diet before her nuptials. And, she looked absolutely stunning on her wedding day.
Most of us don't have a lot time to spend at the gym, so Equinox instructor Danielle Hopkins put together a fool-proof exercise plan guaranteed to get every bride in shape!
Heart-shaped & Strapless dresses? Try the "Push-up to Pike"
Start in a traditional push-up position. Perform one regular push-up then go back into downward-dog position with your legs straight and hips elevated. From there, perform a pike push-up aiming to touch your forehead to the floor. Aim for 10 full rounds.
Regular push-ups are great for just about everything, especially your chest. The twist of adding the pike push up will also give you better definition in your shoulders, and also works the triceps for that lean defined look.
Drop-waist or Backless dresses? Try "Thruster Rows"
Grab a set of medium to heavy dumbbells and rack them so the back part touches near your shoulders. From a standing position, squat to set dumbbells down and step back to plank position with your feet wide, dumbbells under your hands. From plank position, perform one row on each side, trying to keep your hips level. Next, step both feet outside your hands and come up to a loaded low-squat with dumbbells by your shoulders. Come up to stand and use your legs to help you push the weights up for an overhead press. Do this for 45-60 seconds and you'll get an added cardio bonus!
This is a multi-functional move that works the whole body, especially everything you see from behind. The rows will give you definition in your back for a backless dress. The twist of doing the row from a plank position will deeply challenge your core and the squat-to-overhead press will work your glutes, shoulders and lungs!
Sexy, tight dresses? Try "Gliding Disk Plank Reach"
This is a twist on your standard plank, you'll need a slick surface, gliding disks (you can use paper plates or towels) and a mat for your knees. Come to the floor on all fours with the gliding discs under your hands. Drop your hips as though you were going to do a push up from your knees. Slide to reach both hands out in front of you on the gliding discs (hips and butt will drop with you) and then pull them back in to return to starting position. Start with a smaller movement and then as you get stronger, reach out further. Make an effort to control the movement before your hips and chest hit the floor.
This move is good for your core, lats and shoulders. When you start this move, you will feel your abs immediately fire. As you pull the gliding discs back in, you'll continue to feel your abs but also lats (under your armpits). Finally, your shoulders and triceps will work to pull your back in. These are all good areas to strengthen in order to tighten your overall shape and avoid the dreaded "bra bulge" often seen in strapless or backless dresses. Added bonus: strong lats will make your waist appear smaller!
For more workout tips, check out www.equinox.com.
-- Terri MacLeod