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7 Offbeat Wedding Ideas for Your Big Day

7 Offbeat Wedding Ideas for Your Big Day

There are certain wedding traditions that everyone assumes they have to adhere to. But what if you were willing to embrace the idea that almost none of them are an absolute requirement? The truth is that there is very little that you’re legally required to do, but social expectations may make you consider having a wedding day that is just like everyone else’s. To avoid this, add in at least a few offbeat touches that allow you and your future spouse to showcase your unique personalities.

1. Alternatives to a Wedding Cake

The average cost of a wedding cake is rapidly approaching $500. Aside from the cost factor, many people admit later on that they weren’t even all that impressed with their cake. Therefore, why should you have one? This is one wedding tradition that is practically begging to be skipped, and there are so many fun alternatives. Doughnuts are becoming increasingly popular, and you could also have a dessert bar instead. Or think even further outside the box by utilizing your favorite sweet treat.

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2. Reexamine Wedding Favors

Many of your guests will not remember to take their wedding favors home, especially if they are of the traditional variety. You can skip the favors altogether if you put something else together to entertain your guests. If you wish to provide a favor or two, though, make it something memorable that people will truly want to keep. Customized slippers are an unusual but thoughtful wedding idea that will make it easier for people to have fun dancing. Add a photo booth or some S’mores to the mix and your guests are certain to love your wedding favors!

3. Skip the Fancy Dinner

Are you and your fiancée fancy dinner type of people? If the answer is no, it makes no sense to serve a black tie event type meal that contains food most people can’t even pronounce. Instead of spending up to $73 per guest for catering, opt for a buffet that has some of your favorites. Pizza buffets are a nice touch for a wedding with a more casual vibe or you could have a barbecue to keep things fun. Your guests would also enjoy a buffet that’s full of everyone’s favorite comfort food such as mashed potatoes, corn on the cob and macaroni and cheese. This will save you money, and it will also provide a meal that people will look back on fondly.

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4. Pick a Personal Theme

Weddings are often over-the-top and are not even a good representation of the couple getting married. Keep your budget in line by avoiding pretty but unnecessary décor that has nothing to do with who the two of you actually are. Instead, select a theme that includes a mutual favorite such as Halloween, football or Star Wars. From there, you can choose appropriate and fun décor that is guaranteed to be a conversation starter. Don’t forget to include the theme in every aspect of your wedding. For example, if you choose Star Wars, you can use music from the movies during your ceremony. Don’t be afraid to mix two themes if this lets the two of you express yourselves more fully.

5. Encourage Conversations with a Quiet Area

Sitting inside a reception venue is usually noisy and not very conducive to actual conversations. To help people have the best of both worlds, have a DJ or band keep the party going indoors and set up a quiet area outside. If you have chosen a reception venue that has the appropriate space outside, you can build a bonfire. If there is nowhere for people to go outside that is safe and appropriate, consider setting aside a room indoors for people who want to take a breather from the reception hall.

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6. Create Something Artistic Together

Exchanging rings is a tradition you will most likely keep, but there are many other things you can add to your ceremony. A prime example for people who are even the slightest bit artistic is to sketch, draw or paint something together after you say your vows. This doesn’t have to be something big that will take a long time. Instead, choose something you can do together in 5 minutes or less. It may not be a masterpiece, but it will be something worth hanging on your wall. And if you want it to be more detailed, the two of you can finish it later.

7. Hide Your Favorite Color under Your Dress

If you decide not to eschew tradition altogether by getting an alternative wedding dress, you can still spice things up by adding a splash of color beneath the dress. This is easily accomplished with a petticoat or a crinoline, and it’s also a good way to add one of your wedding colors to your outfit. Red looks amazing next to a white or ivory dress, as will many other colors.

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Ultimately, your wedding day is all about you and your future spouse. Therefore, it’s wise to put aside any traditions that you aren’t comfortable with. Incorporate your personalities and the history of your relationship as much as possible to make the day truly special. By making some careful choices, you can have an offbeat wedding that is fun and affordable.

Featured photo credit: lindico via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on August 6, 2018

10 Benefits of Deadlifts You Probably Never Knew

10 Benefits of Deadlifts You Probably Never Knew

The Deadlift. It is the quintessential weightlifting exercise. According to David Robson, a bodybuilder, personal trainer and contributor to Bodybuilding.com,

“In my experience as an athlete, and based on the results witnessed by many of my personal training clients, the deadlift, if performed correctly, will build unparalleled mass while strengthening all the major muscles groups.

Yes, many will argue that the squat is the King of Exercises, and will contribute to more strength and size gains than any other exercise.

While it is true that the squat does rank as one of the best size builders (and on this basis alone should be included in everyone’s program), the deadlift, in my opinion, builds the upper and lower body like no other movement.”

The deadlift is done by simply grasping your free-weight bar (with as many weights as you can feasibly – not comfortably – lift) and lifting up until your standing up with the bar hanging in front of you, arms extended.

1. Increased Fat Burning

Alwyn Cosgrove, a personal trainer and fitness author, recently wrote about a study where: “Overweight subjects were assigned to three groups: diet-only, diet plus aerobics, diet plus aerobics plus weights. The diet group lost 14.6 pounds of fat in 12 weeks. The aerobic group lost only one more pound (15.6 pounds) than the diet group (training was three times a week starting at 30 minutes and progressing to 50 minutes over the 12 weeks).

The weight training group lost 21.1 pounds of fat (44% and 35% more than diet and aerobic only groups respectively). Basically, the addition of aerobic training didn’t result in any real world significant fat loss over dieting alone.”

Lifting weights and resistance training will burn more fat than just dieting or dieting with cardio exercise alone.

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2. Better Posture

Deadlifting increases your core strength and adds to core stability, according to Robson. Deadlifting targets all of the muscles responsible for your posture and enables you to keep your back straighter during regular daily activities.

3. More Muscles Worked

The Deadlift works more muscles than any other exercise, including the squat. The lift engages all of the major muscle groups, according to exercise physiologist Kevin Farley. If you need to do one exercise, this is the one to do. The Deadlift works your lower and upper body, including your back muscles.

4. Increased Real Life Lift

When you do other lifting exercises, like a bench press, for example, you’re not doing anything you might really do in real life. When are you ever going to have the need to lay on your back and push something in the air — unless you’re giving your two-year-old “flying lessons.” The Deadlift develops the muscles you need to actually carry something, like a bucket of water, those heavy grocery bags or your neighbor’s dining room table.

5. It’s Safe

The Deadlift is one of the safest weightlifting exercises you can perform. You aren’t going to get pinned under the weight or have to worry about it pulling you over backwards. If you get into trouble, you can simply drop it…making for a loud bang, no doubt, but no damage. You also don’t have to have a spotter to perform this exercise.

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6. Improved Grip Strength

According to Outlaw Fitness:

“Deadlifts are renowned for their ability to build massive amounts of grip strength, and for good reason. Your fingers are literally the only things connecting you to the weight of the bar. Your forearms have to work incredibly hard as you progress in weight to keep the bar from falling out of your hands. Subsequently your grip strength grows by leaps and bounds.”

7. Increases Hormones

Now don’t worry, these aren’t the hormones that will make you more emotional! Instead, by doing at least 8 to 10 repetitions of Deadlifts with significant weight, you can increase the amount of testosterone and growth hormone produced by your body.

Testosterone increases muscle growth and improves muscle repair while growth hormone, which is produced by your pituitary gland, promotes tissue healing, bone strength, muscle growth and fat loss.

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8. Cheap and Easy

A lot of exercises require a lot of equipment, special shoes or whatever. Not the Deadlift. Just a bar with some weight. Pick it up. Simple. You can usually find freeweights and a bar at a thrift store – or being given away by a friend – making it even cheaper.

9. Increased Cardio

Believe it or not, doing 10 repetitions of Deadlifts will increase your cardiovascular ability. You might want to make sure you have somewhere to sit down when you’re done!

10. Prevents Injury

The Deadlift can help prevent injuries by increasing the strength of your muscles around critical tendons and ligaments. Supporting joints with strong muscles is crucial to preventing injury, especially in the hamstrings and lower back, according to Outlaw Fitness.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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