The first (and so far, only) time I completed Dry January, was in 2016.
Now I am known as a girl who likes a glass (or five) of Prosecco. Or a nice crisp, cold French white. But that year, I was preparing for a number of key events, including my first triathlon and half marathon. So it seemed like a good way to start my training.
Although if I am completely truthful, that wasn’t the only reason. Over the Christmas holidays I’d seen mention of Dry January on the telebox. I half-heartedly suggested I might take part. And my then husband had hysterics at the very idea. There was no way, in his mind at least, that I could achieve such a thing. So that became the main aim: prove him wrong. There is nothing like someone thinking that I can’t to ensure that I can and I will. Stubborn should have been my middle name.
After the month was out, I got it. I understood why a month of abstinence can make you change your habits for the longer term.
I did miss having a glass of wine. Especially when I went out for a meal. But, you know, not that much. And as the month went on, I missed it even less.
After Dry January my drinking habits changed considerably. Where in the past I’d quite often have a glass in the evening or finish off a bottle on a Saturday night, without any real effort or fanfare my drinking dropped down to a glass or two a week. Add that to the days of abstinence before one of my many events that year, I was barely drinking at all. As a result, I lost weight, had more energy and my skin was better.
But of course, you slip back into bad habits oh so easily. I’ve found of late that it’s getting all too easy to open a bottle mid-week….. and finish it. One beer with our Friday night pizza becomes two. From a calorie point of view it all adds up. From a nutritional point of view, well, there isn’t any.
So it’s going to be another Dry January in our house.
Or maybe just a slightly damp one………