Should you lose weight for your wedding day?

A year ago I could have died.

That’s a story for another day, but there’s nothing quite like squaring up to your own mortality to realise that you need to look after your physical health. Since April 2018, after my recovery, I have run over 200km, completed 30+ weight sessions in the gym, and lost over 20lbs in weight.

These are just numbers and I don’t want people to congratulate me. But I thought it was worth marking the milestone. And it leads me to my main topic.

A wedding dress in the Vermont Hotel Newcastle

A wedding dress in the Vermont Hotel Newcastle

My weight loss has allowed me to experience a bit of what brides, and increasingly grooms, have to face in the run up to their wedding.

It’s better now than it used to be, with more diversity on show, and the focus shifting from purely physical health to incorporating mental health and a positive body image, but the wedding industry still pushes losing weight before your wedding day. It’s one of the reasons that I no longer attend the larger wedding fairs, replete with companies selling gym memberships, diet shakes, and bridal shops with impossibly thin dresses. Don’t even get me started on clinics offering plastic surgery before your wedding!

All of this outside pressure can quickly accumulate on the shoulders of brides and grooms, but I’d encourage you to shrug it off before it settles. Like everything else to do with your wedding, decide what matters to you and screw the rest.

It may be that you decide that you want to lose weight before your wedding, just as I did after I was ill.

Great! Go for it!

Just make sure you are doing it for yourself.

Equally, you do not HAVE to lose weight for your wedding. Your partner is marrying you the way you are. Your family love you the way you are.

Your self worth is not measured by the number on your bathroom scale.

As far as I’m concerned, I have never photographed an unattractive bride or groom.

Everyone celebrating love, joy and happiness on their wedding day is beautiful.