It was love at first sight for this active couple, who have strengthened both their bodies and their relationship through their mutual love of fitness. Theresa and Dave met at a single’s event at the Willow Creek Community Church in early 2009. They arrived separately, both intent on meeting up with friends, but fate stepped in when they caught each others eye. Theresa said on first meeting Dave, “It was definitely love at first sight. I still remember the huge smile he had on his face when he turned and looked my way. It was one of those wow moments for both of us.”

On a cold November day three years after they first met, Dave popped the question while sitting on “their bench” overlooking the Fox River. The couple adopted the bench over their courtship as they took breaks from their many walks and bike rides along Prairie Path. They built both their love for each other and their love of fitness on that bench, so it held an extra special meaning.  

As they approached “their bench,” Theresa got butterflies knowing what was about to happen. Dave expressed his love, put his hand in his coat pocket, and pulled out what Theresa describes as “the most beautiful ring I’ve ever seen!” 

While some brides may stress over having just six months to prepare for one of the biggest days of their lives, this couple put together a beautiful affair that their friends and family won’t soon forget! Luckily for Theresa, she already had a head start on the piece most brides consider to be the most important: the dress.

One year before getting engaged, Theresa found an ad in a bridal magazine with a picture of her “dream dress.” She kept the picture in her car for over a year, and coincidentally, a couple of weeks before her engagement, searched for her dress online. She found a trunk show featuring her dress would be in town that very weekend, and although she wasn’t yet engaged, decided she had to go! After a year of anticipation, her dress didn’t end up having the “wow” factor she was expecting. But, as fate would have it, she fell in love with the second dress she tried on and knew right then she had to say yes to that dress! She wanted the trunk show discount on her gown, so she ordered it that day…ring on her finger or not!

Necklace: Ti Adoro Multi Teardrop Necklace with Ribbon, Bracelet: Ti Adoro Bella Vintage Teardrop Cuff, Earrings: Ti Adoro Perfect Pear Drops

Once Theresa found her perfect dress, she turned her attention to find the finishing touch for her wedding day look! Her bridal assistant suggested she remove her dress’ crystal strap after the ceremony, thus transforming it into a chic, strapless dress! Once transformed, they decided adding a statement necklace would be the perfect finishing accessory! Theresa stumbled across Bella Bleu Bridal on her way home from work, and got more than she expected! Theresa loaded on the glitz and glamour and finished her dress with a Ti Adoro necklace, a custom-designed bracelet, and earrings. In keeping with the tradition of including “something bleu” for luck, Theresa chose a beautiful bleu La Gartier garter from Bella Bleu, and a pair of bleu Hanky Panky’s. 

Besides making all the necessary arrangements to ensure their big day went off without a hitch, Theresa and Dave also attended an eight week pre-marital workshop where they met their mentor couple, James and Audrey Moyna. Their mentors provided invaluable guidance and helped them strengthen and grow in their relationship. James ended up officiating their wedding and centered his message around a marriage “fitness plan” for the fabulously fit couple.  

In addition to strengthening their relationship, Theresa and Dave also spent their engagement strengthening their bodies. Since they bonded on their mutual love of fitness, they decided to step up their training and get in the best shape of their lives for their big day. Theresa specifically focused her training on her “bridal muscles” since she had a strapless dress to showcase. 

On May 26, 2012, Theresa and Dave were married in Willow Creek Community Church, the same church where the couple met three years prior. With strong bodies and a strong love for one another, they celebrated their love in front of their friends and families. Green hydrangeas and cream roses gave the church a soft, romantic glow which was accented by the champagne colored bridesmaids’ dresses. 

When planning their reception, the couple knew they wanted one thing: truly authentic Italian food (and lots of it). Since Theresa and Dave are cupcake lovers, they chose to forgo traditional wedding cake for a tasty Sweet Mandy B’s cupcake bar at the end of the night!  

After Theresa and Dave heard Vince Amore sing at Mayor Daley’s Columbus Day Banquet years ago, he was the clear front runner when it came to choosing wedding music! They both loved his Frank Sinatra style and witty personality, but there was one small problem in booking him…they didn’t know his name! Luckily, after some Nancy Drew detective work done by Theresa, they got his information and booked him. 

The couple gave Vince a long list of must-have songs to play during the reception, including the song they chose for their first dance- “Amazed” by Lonestar. They got lots of practice for their first dance by dancing to it many nights before their wedding.

Theresa and Dave really enjoyed picking out their wedding song, but the real fun came when picking out favors! They decided to give out bottles of Prosecco with seating cards attached. Many bottles of Prosecco were consumed in the search for the perfect favor, but they finally settled on the appropriately named Ti Amo (which translates to “I love you” in Italian)! While the couple spent months creating their perfect day, their favorite moments were unplanned. Theresa’s absolute favorite moment of their wedding day was as she walked down the aisle. She said, “I looked down and saw Dave. He looked right at me and mouthed the words, “You look so beautiful!” That moment of love can’t be planned! 

Theresa and Dave are currently enjoying married life, which is filled with daily 3:30 AM breakfast dates before Theresa heads to work! While Theresa now fills the role of wife instead of bride, she has has recently opened The Training Ground Athletic Performance Center and dedicated her life to coaching future brides (and the people they love) into the best shape of their lives! Congratulations to Theresa and Dave, we were so happy to be included in their big day!

Get Theresa’s Accessory Look- Bella Bleu Bridal. Necklace: Ti Adoro Multi Teardrop Necklace with Ribbon, Bracelet: Ti Adoro Bella Vintage Teardrop Cuff, Earrings: Ti Adoro Perfect Pear Drops

Theresa and Dave’s Vendors- Ceremony location: Willow Creek Community Church; Photography: Rockabella Vintage Photography; Reception Location: LaVilla Banquets;  Bridal & Bridal Party Gowns: The Dress by Nicole; Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse; Cupcakes: Sweet Mandy B’s; Entertainment: Vince Amore; Hair & Makeup: Color Me Dee.

Until next time: keep calm and wear something sparkly!

Meghan Freier