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?!

  1. Better sleep
  2. Lose weight
  3. Clearer head
  4. 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….

  1. My normal body clock wakes me up around 07:30/08:00.
  2. Wednesday and Thursday are often when I feel super tired, sin alcohol.
  3. A glass of wine on Wednesday night does not make me feel any less tired on the Thursday morning.
  4. My body doesn’t really like alcohol and takes 2-3 days to recover.
  5. 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.