Although my alcohol blog post that I just posted was from March 2020, its fitting it was posted now as I am currently doing Dry January.
"But didnt you decide to give up alcohol until you were healed inside?!"
Ya, i drank in the last 8 months of pandemic chaos. I don't have it all figured out yet, especially about where alcohol fits in my life. But it was definitely more mindful drinking. And I'm proud of myself for not falling back into the really bad patterns - with everything going on in the world, it would have been so easy to do.
Were there some days I had more than necessary?
And at the time I beat myself up and was not very kind to myself. But looking back, overall I think I did good...considering.
But, I know I can do better.
So in 2021 I plan on building on my progress from 2020. It may not have been perfect progress - but there was definitely progress. And I think I need to acknowledge that - even if it wasn't huge. I know for myself it's so very easy to focus on what I could have/should have done instead. But I'm trying something new - I'm going to try to build myself up, instead of tearing myself down (this is actually very difficult for me - I'm my own worst critic). It's also so much easier to do hard things if you have accountability partners, and/or people doing it with you. So I have 3 people in my life who are doing dry January with me!
Isolating myself the last 8 months (longer actually) made things tougher than they needed to be. My 3 accountability partners are a connection. Maybe it's easier to start with connections that are mutually beneficial. We are supporting each other - it's not one way. So there's no guilt or fear of judgement since we are all trying to reach the same goal. And we all find parts of not drinking tough.
Along with dry January, although cliche, I am determined to get back in shape. In order to be successful, I'm doing it in baby steps. And I'm putting a lot of thought into what has and hasn't worked in the past so I can set myself up for success.
For example, by focusing on dry january as a part of getting back into shape instead of as a punishment, it helps me to stay focused and motivated. It lessens the feeling of being deprived because I'm doing it to reach a goal that I will physically see and emotionally feel. It's been 10 days and I'm not finding it too hard so far to not have a beer.
As for getting in shape, I have many options. But aside from walking the dog and some hikes, I've been pretty sedentary.
I've missed sweating.
Well ok, maybe not the sweating part itself, but the way I feel after I've moved my body to the sweating point. I know starting will be tough and it won't feel so good (hence putting it off for sooooo long...). But once I push through the beginning, it gets better. A LOT better. Mentally, emotionally and of course physically. When I feel strong, I feel invincible...
I have not felt invincible in a long time.
Looking at pictures and seeing the weight I've gained is hard. Looking at pictures in the past (ironically through cancer treatment and after) when I was fit is harder knowing the work ahead of me. But as the saying goes, you need to chose your hard.
So I'm choosing running.
Yes you read that right: running.
Everyone who knows me knows I loathe to run. Well, running for "no reason" anyways...I played soccer most of my life and loved it. But I see running in soccer as with a point - ie trying to kick the ball into the net. Running for the sake of running is not really my idea of fun. I always laugh when I see a meme that says "if you see me running you'd better run too cause it means I'm being chased" - that's me to a tee. I've never been able to run on a treadmill and I watch people who use it to train in amazement! Just like the people who do marathons or the people who just run because they like it.
However I will admit it's a good way to sweat in a shorter amount of time than lets say, cycling. When Phil and I go cycling, we are out for a few hours. Being lower on motivation to get started, shorter is definitely better! With the gyms being closed, and us being short on equipment, working out at home is also more challenging. I am currently looking at a few apps that i am going to try, but I didn't want to put off getting my body moving till I had it all sorted. Hence how I came to my decision to start off by running. No equipment needed, no schedules, and you can do it anywhere.
I have the app I used when I started to run while going through chemo. I always felt fabulous after - which says a lot. So I'm putting aside my dislike for my greater good lol. It's a couch to 5k type app called 'Get Running' that's very simple and walks you through each run (and it's free!).
The other reason I've chosen running is that I know I'll hate whatever I start with at the start...so if after I start to get in shape I ditch running, and stick to HIIT type workouts and cycling, it's no loss since I don't like to run anyways. As opposed to starting with riding on my bike trainer, and not enjoying it because it's harder at the beginning. Riding outside is so therapeutic so I don't want to be put off indoors.
And the other thing is that I find running hard. Its challenging and daunting to me. So when I finish a run, I am pumped and proud of myself. Which is helping with the whole "building myself up" mindset shift I'm aiming for.
10 days into 2021 and so far so good...