BRIDES' 30 Day Wedding Shape-Up: Day 2, Get Your HIIT On!

30 Day Wedding Shape Up Day 2

Photo: Getty Images

This is it... The final countdown to your big day. And along with settling those last few details — figuring out where to seat your eccentric Uncle Carl, firming up the flowers — you're likely also making one last push to make sure the body that will be wearing that gorgeous white gown looks as good as it possibly can. You and nearly every other woman with an engagement ring on her finger. In fact, research shows that an overwhelming 91 percent of brides-to-be are anxious about their weight. But from here on out, you won't have to be!

Whether you want to drop those last few pounds or look more toned — or both — we've got a month's worth of daily tips (none of which require starving yourself or working out nonstop!) that will help you feel stunning and confident when you walk down that aisle. You know where to send the thank-you card.

Day 2: Drop Weight Fast With HIIT Workouts

High-intensity interval training (HIIT for short) is the "it" method of doing cardio these days, and for good reason: By alternating bursts of all-out cardio with more moderate ones, you can burn more calories in less time compared to aerobic workouts you do at a single, less intense pace.

In fact, a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that HIIT training burns a whopping 44 percent more calories than doing moderate-intensity cardio for the same amount of time. And get this: You'll continue to burn calories at a faster rate long after you've gone home and showered, because your body must work harder to return to its pre-workout state. So if you're looking to drop weight quickly in the next few weeks, this is the cardio workout for you.

Just don't overdo it! "Stick to just 2 or 3 intense workouts a week, otherwise it can be too hard on your body," says Pete McCall, an exercise physiologist and personal trainer in San Diego. "On the other days, just make an effort to move more." Stand at your desk, walk instead of drive when you can, and aim to get 10,000 steps a day (if you don't have one of those trendy wristbands to count them off for you, use your phone or get a free pedometer app).

See More: How to Work Out Even When You're Busy As Hell

Here's a quick HIIT routine to get you started, but feel free to play with the timing of the intervals:

  • Warm up with five minutes of brisk walking.

  • For one minute, up the intensity by either increasing your speed or the resistance, so you're working at a seven or an eight on a scale of one to 10 (with 10 being the heart-hammering hardest you can possibly manage!).

  • For two to three minutes, drop the intensity so you're working at a four or five.

  • Repeat these intervals for 20 to 30 minutes.

  • Cool down for five minutes.
  • Just getting started on our 30 Day Wedding Shape-Up? Kick off your journey from Day One, here.

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