In this guest blog for Club Soda, Angie shares a bit of her journey of becoming the best possible version of her. For her, exercise and in particular weightlifting has played a big part in quitting alcohol.
Angie is a busy, 42 year old, wife, mother of two children who is hoping to inspire others to put down the wine glass, stop drinking and pick up some weights (or any other exercise!) and adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Starting exercise, quitting drinking
I am certainly not someone who has always exercised, apart from playing netball at school, and having a 6 month period at a gym in my early twenties! Exercise hasn’t been a big part of my life until recently.
To start off with I began running, well jogging, well hyperventilating……. that just put me off and made me realise how out of shape I actually was, but it gradually got easier. Then a mum from school recommended the Jillian Michaels 30 day shred dvd, which started me off using small hand weights. I was still drinking and my diet was all over the place but I gradually saw the weight coming off slowly. The problem was I would workout in the week, not drink most nights and not eat a lot most days, then by the time the weekend came around I would feel like I ‘deserved’ to drink and eat whatever I wanted, and not exercise – the weekend was my time off. Now this is fine and I totally agree with giving yourself a break and not being too strict with your diet but the problem was I would just feel so rubbish by Monday that it would take me until mid-week to get exercising and eating healthy again. I can see now that it was a crazy, vicious circle, but of course I couldn’t see that then!
So for me it was only when I stopped drinking that I saw a huge change in my energy levels and motivation to exercise.
About two years ago my friends boyfriend started his own personal training business and he introduced me to weight training. I loved it from the start, lifting weights makes you focus on being strong, not skinny and that was a whole new way of thinking for me. I was still a bit hit and miss with exercising and would be committed for a few weeks then do nothing for a while. It was only when I stopped drinking that I started to exercise regularly. I started doing both weights and running and I began to see the change in my weight and body shape. The main thing wasn’t what I was doing it was the fact that I was being consistent, there were no weeks off or hangovers that took over the beginning of the week and no weekend binges. Regular, consistent exercise and a healthy, balanced diet with weekend treats (sometimes daily treats!) is what has worked for me.
A healthy addiction?
So am I addicted to exercise……? Erm I’m not sure really!! All I know is that it clears my head, lifts my mood, helps me deal with life better and I feel healthier than I have done in a long, long, long time! Plus (and probably the most important) I eat more now than I have ever done!! Major bonus!
So if you’re trying to cut down or quit the booze, try to make regular, consistent exercise your focus. It doesn’t have to be anything too strenuous, just a daily walk or exercise dvd, just something to change your mindset and get you on track to being healthy and feeling fab!
If you want to read more of Angie’s journey, you can find her blog at liftingweightsnotwine.com.
Our next Mindful Drinking Festival is on Saturday 13th October 2018 in Glasgow, at The Briggait and is FREE. Head here for more details.
If you’re thinking of doing a sober sprint, would like to cut down your drinking, stop for a while or quit completely – you can sign up to our FREE mailing list for advice, inspiration, events information and more. You can also join our private Facebook group to access our webinars live (check the ‘articles’ section for the saved videos) and to share stories, advice, and support with like-minded people on different stages of their journeys. Want to keep socialising but not sure which places are good for alcohol-free drink choices? Head to our Club Soda pub guide where we list the best places for mindful drinkers.
And don’t forget our Mindful Drinking Festivals – the next one is in Glasgow in October!
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