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September 3, 2006

Taking a Break

I've been bitching too much lately. I've been complaining. A lot. I've been seeing the negative in the world and that's seriously not like me 90% of the time. So, it's getting annoying (and I'm sure not just to me).


I've also been craving drinks. Not just drinking socially. Not just overindulging. Craving. And I can't tell if it's a temporary physical need that comes from an emotional desire to escape or if it's the beginning of a problem.


But let me state for the record: I love drinking. Love it. I think it's fun and social and cool and one of the best parts of being a responsible adult who works freelance. I'm not like a college kid who can't wait for the weekend to go out and par-tay. I like the celebration of the every day. And I like being able to shut my brain off sometimes too.


But I'm tired of complaining. I'm tired of needing a drink to escape from the things that make me want to complain. And I'd like to give my diet and exercise regimen a chance to have some results. I remember noticing how great a friend looked after a few months of diet and exercise (I won't out him, here) and having him counter with, "I had to take a break from drinking to really get the results I wanted." I admired his self-discipline.

So, with just over 100 days left in the year (and remembering how I completely changed my body and my spirit in as much time eight years ago), I'm considering doing a major self-improvement campaign. I already exercise every day. I eat gluten-free and drink tons of water. I don't drink sodas or coffee or any of those things that tend to derail people. I'm currently the healthiest I have ever been, despite being a good 50 pounds overweight. My heart, my lungs, my knees, my endurance... all outstanding. Hair and nails strong and long. Skin flawless. And I am blessed with a kick-ass hourglass figure, even though it needs to reduce by about 20%. I don't have "problem areas." I'm just a big girl.

Here's the thing though. I can't tell if I need to do a T-totaller "give up drinking for the rest of the year" thing or if I can do like I did eight years ago and give myself "reward days" every now and then (days on which I can be less strict in all areas--food, drink, exercise requirements). I kind of like the idea of forcing myself to be 100% for 100 days, but I also can't imagine that it's a practical expectation. What I DON'T want to do is decide to be "perfect" then choose to have a night off and turn that into an excuse (ala: "I failed. I suck. Screw it. It's all over").


Man! I just feel so good even imagining doing 100 perfect days. It was such an amazing thing, watching my body change when I did a 100-day campaign in '98 (note: I did not do 100 "perfect" days back then... but I also had a very different lifestyle, being a full-time PhD student at the time).


What to do, what to do? Hmm. I guess I'll just start with one day and see how that feels. I guess I'm blogging about this as a way of holding my feet to the fire (although I can already tell I'll get annoyed by questions of, "Hey, how's that 100-day thing going?" if things AREN'T going well... so, I'm not sure what my plan is. Maybe I don't have a plan. Maybe I'm looking for suggestions? Hell... I'm just glad I'm not bitching in this entry. I am sooooooo over the complaining. That is a BAD habit, for sure).

Posted by bonnie at September 3, 2006 12:55 AM


*definitely* don't give it up cold-turkey...from everything you've just said, even though you might be able to physically actually do it perfectly, it's much more psychological.

the minute you feel you are "depriving" yourself of anything rather than "giving" yourself something, it becomes a negative choice. whatever altercations you make in your diet to achieve your goals need to come from what you're giving to yourself - a better body, better health, etc. which should include giving yourself rewards along the way!

and besides, if i *do* ever get cray cray (kray kray) even for a second, for god's sake draw yourself in an escape exit before you build...


Posted by: Babes at September 3, 2006 1:47 AM

Babes beat me to the punch. Do NOT go cold turkey. The slighest setback will send you spiraling back.

Use it as a reward.
"Hey! I made it through 2 snark-less weeks! I need a gimlet!" or "Woohoo!!! I landed that contract!!!! Gimlet night with the ladies, here I come!!!"

You deprive yourself of it, you start to resent the 100-day goal. And then you stop working towards it.

Been there...trust me.

besides, if you and your lovely cousin get your booties here for the birthday Casa shindig, you can splurge then ;)

If anyone can get through it, you can. I love you.

Posted by: Ali at September 3, 2006 6:19 AM

Your humility and honesty emanates confidence. Ehem.... The Blonde WRC..............

Posted by: PameLa at September 3, 2006 10:22 PM

Thank you, fabulous ladies. I love you all.

Here's the plan: no drinking wine at home. That will cut out a few thousand empty calories per week and it also means that my only drinking will be public drinking (like at the upcoming Dan Tana's dinners I have scheduled for every week in September), which means I'll be in check anyway (since in public--especially at business dinners--means in moderation).

And yes, one day at a time. Rewards for successes. Continuing to live life as a celebration and kick ass on my exercise every day. Looks like a good 100-day stretch to me!


(And I only had ONE "bitch" today. I said it and then, immediately Keith said, "Hey... watch the complaining!" And I said, "OMG! I have developed a HABIT! Okay... this is OVER!" And the bitching was done. Yay!)

Posted by: Bon at September 4, 2006 12:39 AM

Well, if you've been reading my blog lately, then you know that I've been hitting the gym lately myself, and it's already paid off for me (I'm down roughly 20 pounds) over the past two months. My abs are tighter, the double chin is all but completely gone, and I feel great. I have cut back on drinking a lot, not because I said, "Man, I'm drinking too much, I've gotta cut back," but because I just haven't had the desire. I've just found other things to replace it, and so far it's paying off. I've found that's the best way to reduce bad habits - finding good ones to replace them. Going cold turkey on anything is destined to fail unless you've got something new that is healthier and makes you happy.

Good luck!

Posted by: Hal at September 4, 2006 2:45 AM