This January I gave up Alcohol - big whoop. Dry January has been around for years and I know I'm not the first to try it. It's also not the first time I've given up Alcohol for a few weeks. This time around I also chose to abstain from Caffeine. As a personal trainer this would be considered particularly challenging given that I'm up at 4:30 or 5:30 every morning for work.
It's been an absolute pleasure. I know you're probably calling Bullshit right now, just as many folks at the gym have - hell even the Barista at the coffee shop looks at me with pity when I order a decaf. And i get it, why torture myself?! Excpet I'm not torturing myself, quite the opposite in fact.
This month, my new treats are - Soda Water with Lime, a nice replacement for that glass of wine, and a cup of herbal tea after dinner which nearly makes up for a glass of scotch- nearly. Some interesting stuff happened beyond this though. TV became a little more boring in the evenings, so more productive things happened like chatting with Mel, helping to tidy up the house, getting ready for tomorrow. This got me off to be a little earlier (and with time to read, nothing too exciting here just health & fitness literature), asleep by 10 (like a baby) and bouncing out of bed for my 4:30 alarm. Once at work, I found that my energy and enthusiasm levels weren't punctuated by coffee fixes and followed by drops. Rather I could produce great sessions, remaining focussed throughout the day.
Suffice to say, I'm really enjoying this month of moderation and I'm going to go ahead and roll it in to February (albeit a little more loosely) and beyond.
This year we bid farewell to 2016 - a very challenging year for us. The energy and enthusiasm that this month has brought myself and Melanie is truly tangible. We have a huge year ahead of us with lots of exciting changes planned. I'm excited for these challenges and ready to embrace the hard work ahead.
Probably with a little booze and caffeine sprinkled in (Superbowl is upon us after all). But certainly only as exceptions to the new norm.
Oh and I gained weight.. I'm chalking it up to increased muscle mass from
-more frequent weights sessions (I got close to 5 year old personal bests in Squat, Deadlift and Clean)
-improved sleep quality and therefor recovery
-fewer poor quality, alcohol derived carbs.