Week 16 of 'The Great Wake Up!'
Each week I look forward to seeing what the next Great Wake Up experiment has in store for us. As with previous weeks, I opened up the video in eager anticipation to hear what I would be doing over the coming days.
I always find it interesting to notice how I react as I watch Chris telling us what is involved. Sometimes there is a real sense of excitement, whilst on other occasions I feel a slight resistance. This time my reaction was pretty clear cut. When I heard that I would be cutting out coffee, alcohol and refined sugar from my life, my heart sank.
Anything that involves food feels particularly hard for me. I am an extremely fussy eater so my choices are already fairly limited. I know what I like, and I know what I don't like - and there's very little movement in between.
But after I'd sat and thought about it, it occurred to me that I don't even drink coffee and I only have alcohol on social occasions so I knew there wouldn't be any time over those few days where I would be tempted to have a drink. So was it really going to be as bad as I thought?
Yes. Deep down I knew it would be. I have a sweet tooth and this was where the experiment was likely to hit me hard. I probably consume quite a lot of refined sugar in my daily diet without even realising it.
At any other time, I'd throw myself into this task even knowing it would be difficult for me. But as I'm running the London Marathon next week, I was reluctant to make any big changes to my diet at such a late stage in my training. So I decided a good compromise would be to focus on a couple of things - I'd cut out the bar of chocolate and fizzy drink I consume each day. It doesn't sound much but those two things have become a daily routine in my life. A small bar of chocolate after my dinner has grown from what used to be an occasional treat to becoming a regular occurrence. Both things have become a bit of a habit that I wanted to try and kick, and this seemed like a great opportunity to tackle it.
Even though I'd decided to focus my efforts on a couple of specific areas, I noticed that I was more aware of what else I was putting in my body. I thought twice before I ate certain things which showed me that making a slight change to my diet could help me change the way I approach food more generally. Unfortunately this doesn't seem to have continued since, but it was interesting to note at the time.
I have, however, noticed a definite decrease in my consumption of chocolate and fizzy drinks now that the experiment has officially finished, so I just need to make sure this continues and I don't fall back into my old habits again!