Of course the bride will shine on her wedding day, that’s a given. Yet, there’s no rule that says a groom should not look as handsome as she is beautiful. Many guys don’t think about grooming, but for there are several options to consider in preparation for the big day.
Getting a Head Start: Losing Love Handles
In the midst of picking invitations, cake flavors and a best man, a groom should set aside time to think about himself, too. If he has a pesky few pounds he’d like to lose for a more svelte figure, taking some time to exercise can be a great way to get healthy and reduce stress.
To achieve your ideal weight by the time you walk down the aisle, start changing your nutrition and exercise routines at least six months before the wedding. If you are thinking about major weight loss, you will need more time and to consult your physician.
“The number one thing is to start changing your habits if you want to change your body,” says trainer Joey Gonzalez, co-owner of Barry’s Bootcamp. “If it’s fine-tuning, like dropping five pounds, you’ll definitely need to modify the way you eat. That’s 75 percent of the equation.”
Gonzalez says to avoid things like sugar and starch in your diet. Try to eliminate processed carbohydrates and opt for wheat bran or brown rice instead. And, of course, don’t forget to drink plenty of water. “This is good to do especially the last month before your wedding day,” Gonzalez says.
In addition to modifying your diet, Gonzalez recommends a mixture of interval cardio training and strength training, the core philosophy of Barry’s Bootcamp, which has attracted stars such as Taye Diggs, Bob Harper and chef Curtis Stone.
“The quickest, most efficient way to lose fat and build muscle is through interval cardiovascular exercise and some type of strength training,” says Gonzalez. “One isn’t good without the other. The interval cardio training will help cut down on fat, but you’re certainly not going to build muscle and you’re not doing much in the way of your metabolism unless you start training with weights.”
Train three or four times per week, for at least 20 minutes of interval cardio — moving your body at different levels of exertion.
“It doesn’t necessarily have to be through speed,” says Gonzalez. “It means jogging for 30 seconds and then increasing your incline for 30 seconds. The goal is to fluctuate your heart rate.”
Combine your interval cardio with three or four 30-minute strength-training sessions per week. “Once you start weight training, you’ll raise your metabolic rate and build lean muscle tissue, which burns more calories,” Gonzalez says. “The more lean muscle you have, the faster your metabolism will be.”
If you want to build muscle to fill out your suit jacket, train the desired muscle group at different speeds and weights. Alternate between more reps at a lower weight and lower weight with increased reps to reach your fitness goals.
For an extra boost the week before the wedding, Gonzalez suggests to avoid sodium. Sodium causes water retention, resulting in bloating that most often goes to your face and waist. To avoid the puffy-looking pictures, pass on the salt.
It’s Getting Close: Suit Up
Three months before the wedding, a groom and his groomsmen should schedule a fitting for their wedding attire.
“One fitting should be sufficient for a man,” says K. Cooper Ray, Founder of Social Primer. “And make it fun. Plan a bourbon tasting at the fitting.”
Ray says there are a few things to look for to get the perfect suit. First, the jacket should fit. This means the sleeve length should be appropriate and show some cuff. The sides should be tapered to fit the man. The back of the jacket should lie smoothly at the top of his back around his neck. And, his shirt should fit snugly at the neck. Pants should be hemmed to his height, with room for dancing.
“You can even have your shirts tapered so the fit is sleek and not pillow-poofy on the sides,” Ray says.
Pampering for the Big Day: Just a Bride Thing?
Men often think things like massages and facials are better left to their brides. However, this is not the case.
“It’s the big day of days,” Ray says. “The groom will want to look his best. Grooming is not just to look good in the photos, but also to instill peace and confidence within himself in an otherwise very adrenaline-packed day.”
Spa treatments promote relaxation and boost confidence. Feeling relaxed is particularly useful during the week leading up to the wedding when everyone can get stressed.
“Grooms usually play it cool, but they could use some de-stressing spa time for themselves,” says Brooke Temner, Spokeswoman for Bliss Spa. She suggests that booking a massage will do just the trick, even if it’s just a 30-minute head, neck and shoulder. This can be something the groom enjoys on his own or with his bride.
Facials, waxing, self-tanning and manicures are some other good ways to feel pampered and relaxed before the wedding. If a groom opts for a facial, Temner warns to do it well before your wedding day.
“If you wait until the last minute, you might be allergic to some cream, and suddenly you’re all puffy,” she said. “Not a look you want for your wedding.”
She says the best pre-wedding facial includes things like a rejuvenating peel, extractions to get those pores spic-and-span and masks to energize and hydrate your skin.
Spray tans should also be given a test run at least a month before the wedding to make sure you like the results. And, in the event a groom wakes up with puffy eyes the day of the wedding, Temner says a puree of cucumber folded into paper towels and set on the eyelids will ease swelling for the photos.
Remember, photographers catch everything. There will be wedding pictures of the groom and bride holding hands, wearing the rings, cutting the cake and even of the groom holding the microphone during his speech.
To make sure a groom’s hands look as polished as his suit, the cuticles cannot look grubby, nails should be clipped and buffed and hands well-moisturized. Not only will the groom’s hands look nice, they will feel softer, too.
While a groom should schedule his wedding day haircut two weeks before the wedding to allow time to grow into it, he’ll still need a touch up. Ray says the best man should plan for a barber or hair stylist to come to the house or hotel the day of the wedding so the groom and his groomsmen can have hair trims and razor shaves.