Ironically I have been inspired to write/finish writing this blog post after a night out and I’m not feeling too hot. However, inspiration has come from remembering how different I was feeling from a period of 30 alcohol free days in January. I have always found it very difficult to fully engage in no alcohol for a month and this was in large part to do with how I have in the past managed the stresses of daily life – working full time as a mental health nurse is tiring, busy, mentally draining and can really warrant the desire for a nice glass of red wine!
Looking back on my 20’s I was a heavy drinker – most social occasions ended up con alcohol, drunk, late and pushing hard through the next day. I would feel foggy, however I had the energy somehow to keep going through the day. Hangover day’s used to be active and would involve walking around a gallery or shopping. Was this my body using up all the sugar and crap food I would have eaten on the way home?
I think a large part of my drinking was a result of being single for many years, dating, catching up with friends in a similar stage of life as me. I could never understand how people wanted to stay in and watch TV at the weekend. I am now in a long term relationship and there are instagram romantic moments – but it’s a very normal, happy, balanced relationship with ‘real’ ups, downs and sideways. Being in a relationship has allowed me to have more confidence in myself, and challenge me in ways that I need to be challenged. Somehow, age, being in a relationship and making different choices about my life and health, I feel more grounded and settled and more in touch with me and what and who I am. I feel I have more space and time to think about me….Irony? Security?
I think through single life, drinking was a habit, just like eating chocolate or going to the gym. My body craved alcohol every Thursday as I was used to having a drink on a Thursday.
Have I reaped the benefits of all of what is supposed to happen when you stop drinking?!
- Better sleep
- Lose weight
- Clearer head
- Feel better inside and out
Sorry guys – I haven’t noticed any crazy differences in any of the above.
However – what I have learned is….
- My normal body clock wakes me up around 07:30/08:00.
- Wednesday and Thursday are often when I feel super tired, sin alcohol.
- A glass of wine on Wednesday night does not make me feel any less tired on the Thursday morning.
- My body doesn’t really like alcohol and takes 2-3 days to recover.
- My workouts really are not very powerful – post alcohol only ‘detoxing’
30 alcohol free days has not changed life completely for me – however it has given me a sense of when I want to make a choice not to have alcohol.
For a real time, hard working, person, I have found my ‘real rhythm’ and what actually makes me feel good.
Contact me if you feel you need support/advice around trying alcohol free days.