Filed under: Heath + Beauty, lifestyle, personal | Tags: alcohol, benefits of sobriety, reducing alcohol consumption, sobriety, wine
Every day since my last sip on Monday night I have wanted to come home and have a glass (or 2 or 3) of red wine. And every day I have succeeded in reminding myself of my goal. My disappointment over not completing the challenge would ruin any enjoyment from having even a sip of wine.
My commitment to completing the week without alcohol began from a desire to start making some sacrifices in my life. I’ve been a bit glutinous in the last year – indulging in food & drink and skipping exercise for no reason other than laziness. After a year of my laissez-faire lifestyle, my body started telling me it wasn’t really up for that sort of behavior anymore. Cutting out alcohol for a week seemed an appropriate first step towards making a change. While I was contemplating the change, I thought back to this time last year and remembered training for the Austin Half Marathon. I remembered that I wasn’t partying as much because I had workouts to complete. I made sure to get enough rest, to eat intelligently, and to drink in moderation. I was consciously taking better care of my body so I could complete my goal. Though I haven’t set any fitness goals yet this year, it seemed natural to mimic those lifestyle choices from a year ago in order to get my body back into a good routine. I refused to have to buy new clothes because of weight gain. No stinkin’ way.
The most surprising discovery from this experiment was how I felt during the business week. I slept SOUNDLY through the night. That never happens. For years I’ve blamed Milo for my restless nights. But now that I realize that it may have been ME keeping HIM up, not the other way around. I was so surprised by this that I did a little research and found that in most cases, even though alcohol is a depressant and can help people initially fall asleep faster, alcohol can be disruptive to the second half of sleep for a variety of reasons. This in addition to the obvious fact that if I’m going to sleep with alcohol in the system, I’m probably going to sleep a lot later than normal. As a result of my restful sleep, I felt energetic and refreshed during the day. Having a clear mind, positive attitude and more energy made my work day much better.
Though I fully intend to celebrate on Tuesday with a glass of wine and a pat on the back, I expect to cork my imbibing for at least one more week. Most likely it will be longer. I see it as a long-term weight and spending reduction plan, and also a way to feel better day in and day out. I have a handful of celebrations coming up that I will make exceptions for (can’t take all the fun out of life), but I hope to find a more moderate, less excessive way to enjoy myself in 2010.
Cheers to those who’ve supported me & to those of you trying to do the same for yourselves!
Filed under: Heath + Beauty, personal | Tags: no alcohol for a week, sobriety
I’ve often threatened to spend a week away from alcohol but it hasn’t happened yet (not purposefully anyway). Because life has stabilized, because I have begun to right my exercise wrongs, because I’d love to cut some unnecessary calories from my diet, and unneccessary spending out of my budget and because I don’t have any alcohol-exclusive events planned this week, I’ve decided to start an experiment today: no alcohol for a week.
There is one small caveat to this experiment. I opened a wonderful bottle of Red Bicyclette pinot noir Saturday night and have about 1/2 a glass left to sip, which I am most certainly going to do tonight. So technically, the week will begin tomorrow. (And so the procrastination begins. No no no, I’m kidding. I’m sticking to my guns on this one!)
As I make my way through the week I’ll be updating here to log my journey, and hold myself accountable to my decision. I’m also using the opportunity to look a little harder into the long-term affects of alcohol on the body. While I am super health-conscious in other aspects of my life, the negative affects of imbibing were always pretty easy to ignorantly overlook. With any luck this experiment will lead to positive change in body & budget!
Filed under: food, friends, Garden, go green, lifestyle, personal, travel | Tags: 1015 onions, creeping jenny, gardening in central texas, herb gardening, onions, roman chamomile, square foot gardening, texas vegetable garden, winter vegetable garden
Twenty-ten didn’t waste any time throwing a few speed bumps my direction.
The troubles began the day before I left for Colorado when I woke with a sore, swollen eye – another eye infection. And so I flew to Denver last Thursday wearing my glasses. On Friday a second medical complication required me to spend most of the morning talking with my Doctors in Austin and the pharmacy in Colorado Springs. Cover your ears boys: my Nuvaring had mysteriously gone missing. I finally got everything sorted out and a new prescription filled (only to discover two days later that the original hadn’t actually gone missing – oh, the glories of being a woman), and the trip turned out to be a fantastic one in spite of a challenging start.
Promptly upon my return to Austin, my refrigerator broke down. This resulted in a frantic mid-week evening of picking up a mini-fridge found on Craigslist, ruining the interior of my S2000 with said refrigerator, and relocating all items from broken fridge & freezer to one of two locations: new evil car-destroying mini-fridge or friend Melissa’s freezer. It was an unexpectedly exhausting evening. The following morning I broke a glass in the bathroom as I was getting ready for work. Fifteen minutes later my worst nightmare came true: I set off the recently installed house alarm. In my week away from home I’d forgotten how to enter the disarm code. That afternoon I came home from work sick, sick, sick. Since then I have spent the majority of my weekend in bed, trying to dislodge the styrofoam residing between my ears with sleep, sleep and more sleep.
The worst of all of these events is that I am completely out of sync with my world right now. I can’t decide if it’s because of the aforementioned events, or if those events were a result of me being out of sync. The feeling spans back to my house break-in before Christmas, and then spending the holiday alone in Austin. While my friends were home with their families, I was here. As soon as they got back, I left town. Shortly thereafter I busted my eye, had a fridge bust, and got sick (resulting in more hermit at home time void of contact with the outside world). I’d like to think that I will be back in sync quickly, but I’m staring into another weekend of traveling that is going to keep me from getting settled anytime soon.
My brief glimpse at normalcy came this afternoon when I planted onions. Onions & lettuce & spinach, oh my! I made a quick trip to the Natural Gardener to celebrate my getting out of bed and pajamas today. While I was there I came across Roman Chamomile, which smells wonderful (like apples!). I have no idea what I’ll use it for, but it’s so lovely that I added it to the herb garden. The work was gentle and easy since the beds were already prepared. Being outdoors was absolutely refreshing after being bed-ridden for the last 48 hours. And raking through the herb garden with my hands to free dead leaves was really wonderful – the release of those scents into the air helped clear my head for a brief and wonderful moment. I planted two pockets of creeping Jenny where my herb garden meets the original raised bed in the hopes that the creeping Jenny will fill those areas and keep grass & weeds down throughout the new year.
It feels great to have started the garden, and I’m looking forward to planting carrots & broccoli in the coming weeks. It still seems bizarre to be planting at this time of year, especially after having spent a week in a snow-covered place. Since my trip to Colorado I expect to see pockets of melting snow here in Austin as I drive around town, and am still feeling shocked that there isn’t any here at all. My Yankee blood must be calling to me – I’m even anxious to get to Chicago and experience the cold again. Plans for a second skiing trip this season are sloshing around in my head as well. Which leads to the final piece of my “feeling-out-of-sync” puzzle: since when have I missed cold weather and snow?!