I’m done!

My no alcohol or chocolate for a whole month challenge is done!

And I survived, funnily enough. I know I chose the shortest month of the year, which is kind of cheating, but it’s now officially March and I still haven’t indulged. Talk about going above and beyond. I wonder how long I can go….

In case you were wondering about why I’ve done this challenge, check out this post.

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So what have I learned from this challenge?

1. I definitely am an emotional eater at times. The days when I found myself scrounging for chocolate were the days I was tired, worn out and emotional. Usually sometime after 5pm – or “cactus hour” as we call it at home. The start of 2 hours of dinner, bath, bed routine, complete with whinging toddlers and crying babies. Who can blame me for wanting chocolate after all of that??

2. I still have a sugar addiction. I’ve done soooooo much work over the past year or two to eliminate sugar from my diet. I was inspired a fair bit by the work of David Gillespie, of Sweet Poison,¬†and Sarah Wilson, of I Quit Sugar. I know for certain I feel, function and look much better when I’m not mainlining the sweet stuff and I have seriously reduced my overall intake to somewhere between hard core sugar avoider, to using only natural sugars, to the occasional sweet treat here and there. I’m still finding my happy place in this respect. But what I learned from this challenge was that if I was having one of those point 1 days as described above, I would seriously go looking for sugar. As in apple crumble or a bag of mixed lollies, neither of which I’ve had for ages. There was something about removing my sugar vice of choice (chocolate) which made me realise I really was relying on that as a crux in a lot of situations. It wasn’t just a treat, it was usually a mood lifter.

So where to now. Well I’m not about to go and bury my head in a vat of cocoa, but I’m going to be watching with interest as to when the urge next strikes me for a chocolate fix! I’m going to keep my intake strictly to good quality dark chocolate, and I’m going to have a bit more of a play around with making my own.

As for the alcohol, I can seriously take it or leave it, so I’m going to mostly avoid it, but give myself permission to have a glass or two on special occasions.

Now as for March? I’ve been so busy this past week I haven’t really had time to think about what my challenge is for the coming month. But considering I started my pilates rehab instructor training course today, I think a good challenge will be to really delve into that. I’m studying through Polestar Pilates and it’s a seriously intensive course over several months. But for this month, my challenge is going to be this: an hour of pilates practice every day, six days a week, for the whole month. My course requires a LOT of practice hours for certification, so I figure by getting into the habit of regular practice this month, I’ll be setting myself up for a good habit for the coming year. No leaving it all to the last minute and cramming in 50 hours of logbook work in the final month!

Cheeerio February – Helloooo March!!