Congratulations on your upcoming wedding and welcome to The Shrinking Bride!
I’m Anna and I’ve made it my mission in life to get brides in the best shape of their lives before their big day. I was a chef and have traveled all over the world cooking and baking delicious food. During my travels, I’ve met many brides in all age groups who were stressed, anxious, and ate their feelings. I would spend hours outside of work getting to know these brides, listening to their worries, suggesting healthier food options, and even give them cooking demos. We would also discover how they could be more active in ways they actually liked. I was legitimately helping women meet their weight loss goals and wed their husbands and wives with more confidence than they’ve ever had! I had become an unofficial bridal coach. And I loved it!
Oops…I Conveniently Left Out One Thing
Now for my confession: I was 50 pounds overweight. I used to always say, ”Never trust a skinny chef!”. But the truth was, I was miserable in my own skin. The reason I could understand these brides so well was because I was just like them. How could I coach people if I hadn’t reached my own goal? And when it was my turn to be a bride, I knew things had to change.
I’m so passionate about sharing and supporting other women with this, I decided to make it into a blog! I would love for you to know a little more about me. After all, I am here to help you.
While in university in 2007, I met the man of my dreams. Actually, I hated him at first! We were both moving into the same off-campus student house. There were 8 of us in total, packed in like sardines, and he was the last to move in. He thought it was a great idea to move in at 2am and start using power tools to put his bed and shelving together. Did I mention my room was right underneath his? After 15 minutes of drilling, I had had enough. I threw some sweats on, covered my bedhead with my hoodie, and marched upstairs. I knocked on his bedroom door like a cop coming to shut a frat party down. The door opened, and out came a curly haired Adonis of a man. I didn’t let that stop me, oh no! I was a woman on a mission! I gave him a piece of my mind, he mumbled sorry, and I did my best hair flip (my hood had come off at some point) and Beyoncé sashayed away.
The next day he knocked on my door with a card that said sorry and a mini bottle of Bailey’s Irish cream. I don’t know how he knew, but that happens to be my favorite drink. And just like that, we were friends. We were both in relationships at the time, so we stayed close friends and really got to know each other. A year after we graduated and after both of our relationships ended, we started dating.
In 2012, he proposed. We decided have a destination wedding and get married in Mexico the next year. We were so excited! I could picture myself on the beach in a beautiful white, fitted sheath dress. The only thing was that I was 50 pounds overweight. I wanted to feel confident on my wedding day, and I knew I wouldn’t feel that way with all that extra weight on. So I had to come up with a plan. This plan helped me lose 50 pounds for my wedding day, and I’ve kept it off for over 5 years.
The Purpose of The Shrinking Bride
I had always been overweight and I always felt less confident than my friends. I always felt like the fat friend, the less attractive one. I first had to change my thinking. One of my favorite quotes was the catalyst of that shift in thinking:
“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I change.” – Carl Rogers
This was such an essential step for me. We have the tendency to set unrealistic goals and to be so hard on ourselves when we don’t meet them. Whether you lose 1 pound or 50, always remember that you are enough as you are right now. Let me say that again: YOU ARE ENOUGH AS YOU ARE RIGHT NOW. Accept that. Believe that. And once you do, you can begin to change.
Weddings are fun to plan, but they are also stressful. Coordinating food and venues and guest dynamics takes a lot out of you. And even without a wedding, you still have to prepare for an actual marriage. And like many of you, my go-to when stressed was always food. Sweet, salty, crunchy, fried, soft and bready. I came up with The Shrinking Bride for all of you brides that have struggled with your weight and self-esteem. This is not only meant to get you in the shape you deserve, it is a place for support and resources. We are in this together.
If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help support you on this journey.
You can do this. You are worth it. I believe in you.