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Biggest Mistake To Avoid Before Your Senior Session

Jenn McKinney Photography 2025 Model Team Applications now open close on November 15th,  Raleigh Senior Portrait Photographer,
Senior Model Team Beach Session

When it comes to senior photography sessions, we all want them to be memorable and full of joy. After all, these moments should be a celebration of your achievements and the beginning of a new chapter in your life. However,

there's one common mistake that many seniors make before their session

and it's not what you'd expect, seniors time after time keep telling me the same thing. No it's not something to do with their outfit, location, nails, makeup or hair. I have heard this so much that I want to address it with EVERYONE so others can avoid this same mistake. I am not going to call anyone out who has made this mistake - they know how I feel about it :).

Seniors keep telling me after their session that they didn't eat ALL DAY!

My sessions are held at golden hour, so it's around 6-8pm that they confess that they either have not ate anything all day or barely ate. Yes I know there is intermediate fasting and all of that but if this is something you are not used to going about 24 hours without food can leave you not feeling amazing. I want you to feel amazing during your entire session and not feeling drained by the end because you have no energy!

I GET IT! Certain foods make me bloated and I have learned a little trick that I want to share with y'all. There is a detox water that I make and a certain food that I have started to add to my smoothies etc - I'll share the recipes below. Please note I am not a doctor or nutritionist - these are just things I have learned for myself and in my research to help me with stomach issues. Please understand everyone's body is different and you might need to experiment for yourself - but not eating anything is not the answer!

You might be surprised to hear that some seniors skip meals on the day of their photoshoot because they're worried about looking bloated. The truth is, not eating can have the opposite effect – it can leave you feeling lightheaded, fatigued, and far from your best self during your session. So, let's talk about how to prepare properly and ensure you look and feel your absolute best.

**Help Bloat with Detox Water:** One secret to a successful senior session is staying hydrated and if you an also drink water that will help with bloat - that's a Win Win! I make a special detox water, infused with ginger and lemon(can add basil or mint leaves), this can help fight inflammation, leaving you feeling refreshed and radiant. Hydration is key, and this flavorful beverage is an excellent choice to keep you feeling your best. It is extremely easy to make - please note it is a detox water and will make you have to pee :). I recommend making this (recipe below) and if you are already bloated make a pitcher and drink throughout the day, leading up to your session I would recommend drinking 1-2 cups a day starting about 3 days before your session. Please note I said this will make you have to pee so drinking 2 glasses right before you session will make you need to use the bathroom so be aware of this if your session is held at a location where there is no bathroom. If you drink this on the day of your session I would stop drinking it about an hour before the start of your session for your bladder sake. The ginger is a natural anti-inflammation food. I buy the fresh ginger root from the produce section of the grocery store. This works better than the ginger powder.

----How to store ginger root------

I peel the ginger root, slice it into inch size pieces and store in the freezer. So easy to just grab a few pieces to make my water, smoothies etc.

**Choose Bloat-Friendly Foods:** Rather than avoiding food altogether, focus on choosing the right kind of nourishment. Incorporate vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins into your diet. These foods won't make you feel bloated and will provide you with the energy you need to shine during your photoshoot. Say goodbye to sugar, grease, and spicy foods that might make you feel uncomfortable. Smoothies are a great option - as long as you don't make them filled with sugar. Juice and yogurt can be full of sugar - be aware of this so you don't create a sugar filled drink and miss the point of a healthy smoothie. I'll share my smoothie recipe below - you might have to tweak it for your liking as I add spinach and kale to mine. You might have to experiment to find the recipe you like. Be sure to add ginger root to your smoothie ( you won't taste it) but it will help with inflammation. Please note Avocado and Full Fat Coconut Milk are good fats that help burn fat - Avocado can be used instead of bananas in smoothies to make it creamy. Pineapple and Raspberries is also good to add to your smoothies - I have seemed to develop an allergy to these - so I don't add those to my smoothies. Be sure to choose fruits that aren't as high in sugar.

**Plan Ahead:** To achieve that healthy, glowing look, start planning at least three days before your senior session. If you know certain foods like dairy can bloat you, it's best to avoid them a week in advance. Remember, it's all about feeling your best on the big day. Be aware of your food a week before your session and avoid them, if it is something you love but know it will bloat you, plan to have that for dinner after your session as a reward for not indulging it in for a week :). Trust me it will be totally worth it to skip that pizza, ice cream, salty biscuit or whatever it is that you love. It's only a week - you can do it! Please understand I am not telling you to go on a diet before your session - I am just suggesting avoiding certain foods that will bloat you - you should know your body enough to know what causes you to bloat. For me spicy foods bloat me, as crazy as it sounds the fried chicken sandwich from Chick-fil-a doesn't bother me but their grilled sandwich/nuggets bloat me - must be some of the spices in the marinade???? If you need to make a food journal months before you session if you need to figure out certain foods that bloat you. I have learned that if I drink my detox water before and after these meals it helps with my bloat so much, but I still have to be careful with what I choose to eat.

Your senior session is an experience you'll cherish for years to come. I want you to enjoy every moment, free from headaches or discomfort. While I'm not a doctor or nutritionist, I genuinely care about your well-being and want you to be healthy and happy throughout the process.

So, in a nutshell, don't make the mistake of starving yourself before your senior session. Eat right, stay hydrated, and prepare wisely. I'm here to capture your radiance and joy, and together, we'll make your senior session an unforgettable experience.

My Smoothie Recipe:

1/2 Can of Full Fat Coconut milk

1 cup water

1/2 tsp ground flax seed

1/2 tsp chia seed

1/2 tsp liquid coconut milk

1/2 avocado

2 handfuls of frozen chopped kale & spinach

about 4-5 frozen strawberries

handful of frozen blueberries

1 tbsp of almond butter (no salt or sugar added)

3 - 1inch pieces of ginger root

Mix in blender - Enjoy

My Water Detox Recipe

Juice from 2 lemons

3 - 1inch pieces of ginger root

3-4 basil or mint leaves

6 cups of boiling water

Squeeze lemon juice into pitcher

add ginger and basil or mint leaves

Add boiling water

Let set for about 20 mins then remove the leaves

After it cools store in the fridge - pour over ice in a glass to enjoy

Seniors Be sure to eat something on the day of your session!!!

2025 Model Team Applications are NOW OPEN - Close on November 15, 2023

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