30 DAY CHALLENGE – STOP BEING A DRUNKEN COUCH POTATO

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About three years ago I signed up to a very intense gym challenge with a friend.

For six weeks I went to the gym five times a week to lift weight, do squats and weird things called burpees with a personal trainer.

I had never done anything like it before. It was a total shock to the system. It was a classic case of hurting in places I didn’t know it was possible to hurt.

To add to this pain we also had to cut out carbs, sugar and BOOZE for the duration. All my major food groups, gone! My body didn’t know what the hell was happening to it.

I felt stoned, I couldn’t concentrate, I was irritable. I couldn’t go out because I didn’t want to be tempted to drink or eat. I was in self-imposed quarantine. Me and my achy legs, bum and tum.

But then something amazing happened.

Half way through the six weeks my body adjusted to its new routine of broccoli and chicken breasts and getting up at 6am to be at the gym. In fact, I actually started to jump out of bed. Shock horror, mornings are easier when you don’t have a bottle of red wine in your system.

That perkiness stayed all day. I found myself whizzing through work I would normally faff over for days. I felt more upbeat. Nothing was a problem.

Everybody noticed the difference in me.

Mum would phone and ask me how I was and I’d say ‘Fine!’. ‘How’s work?” she ask. ‘All good!’ would be my reply. There was silence. She didn’t know the rules of this new conversation, one in which her daughter was actually happy.

‘It’s like you’ve had a personality transplant,’ she said.

And it was. I was a different person.

I became a healthy living convert! I wrote an article about how exercise changed my life! I vowed to never go back to my slummy ways! I would become one of those smug people who just sipped on a glass on a glass of wine on special occasions!

So what happened? I WENT BACK TO MY SLUMMY WAYS. OBVS.

After about six months I moved away from the nice gym. I made excuses about why the new local gym wasn’t right (despite the fact that I signed up and was paying them a direct debit) and began my slow descent back into boozy couch potato land.

Right now I am at the height of my boozy potato-ness – or rather the depths.

It’s funny that this year has been all about self-improvement but physically I have gone downhill. I’ve eaten and drunk as much as I’ve liked (part of the F**K It! mentality) and it’s been fun but I’m now feeling very heavy and sluggish. I’m waking up most mornings with a dull hangover and that’s not cool.

I know from my small period of healthy living that what you eat and what you drink and how much you move makes a MASSIVE DIFFERENCE to your mood, your life, your productivity. You can read all the self-help books in the world but if you’re mixing them with booze, chocolate and  a hectic work out of remote control lifting/Facebook checking (as I have been doing), they’re probably not going to have much effect.

So it’s time to make some changes.

MY THIRTY DAY CHALLENGE 

So I’ve been thinking about the 30 Day challenge to be proactive and to work in our Circle of Influence.

(Remember, Covey says we have two circles in our life: the Circle of Concern, which is all the things we’re worrying about, and the Circle of Influence, which is all the things we can actually do something about).

I’m going to refine it down a bit to specifics, starting with:

NO BOOZE FOR 30 DAYS. In my last post I suggested I’d have three booze free days a week but actually, sod it, I need to cut it out all together for a while. I’ll write another post about my love affair with alcohol later, but for now, suffice it to say I drink too much and it’s time to take a break in order to improve my productivity, my health, my weight and my mood. Oh and my bloated booze face.  My modelling career is really suffering.

EXERCISE HALF AN HOUR EVERY DAY – Even if it’s just a brisk walk around the block I know that it makes such a difference to my mood and energy.

MEDITATE – I will do another post on this at some point but a couple of years ago I learnt how to do something called Transcendental Meditation and I found it very helpful. You can do it on the tube, on the bus, in the office loos and do it. Anyway, you’re meant to do it twice a day for twenty minutes but I’m going to commit to ONCE A DAY FOR THE NEXT 30 DAYS.

CHECK THE BANK BALANCES EVERY DAY – I’ve been doing this! And I’ve been writing down my spending every day too! But my finances are still a mess. I now have new interest free credit cards which are giving me breathing space but I’m getting confused by what I owe to whom. I’m going to my friend’s house this week to have another budget planning session. (Another post on this to come too).

PLAN WHAT I’M DOING THE NEXT DAY – I think there’s going to be a chapter on this in Covey’s book, about prioritising what’s really important versus what’s urgent but for now I’m promise not to go to bed without planning out my next day. I was going to say that I am a very disorganised person but that is ‘VICTIM SPEAK’ (see last post) and so I won’t say that. Instead I’ll say, I’m working hard to be more organised…

AND THAT’S IT FOR NOW. 

DO YOU WANT TO JOIN IN THE 30 DAY CHALLENGE? WHAT 3-5 THINGS COULD YOU COMMIT TO DOING OVER THE NEXT MONTH THAT WOULD IMPROVE YOUR LIFE? PLEASE JOIN IN, I’D LOVE THE COMPANY. PLEASE LEAVE COMMENTS BELOW OR EMAIL ME. 

SPEAKING OF WHICH, I’VE BEEN HAVING EMAIL ISSUES FOR THE MONTH AND HAVEN’T BEEN GETTING ALL MY MESSAGES SO IF YOU’VE EMAILED AND I HAVEN’T REPLIED THAT’S WHY. I’M SORRY. IT SHOULD BE UP AND RUNNING AGAIN NOW. 

 

 

36 thoughts on “30 DAY CHALLENGE – STOP BEING A DRUNKEN COUCH POTATO

  1. eva

    I would love to join. I want to commit to 30 days of Yoga. 30 days of working out on my trampoline (which means I have to get it fixed….) and 30 days of drinking a green smoothie or or eating something green (a soup or a salad) every day. Pfff. That will be a toughie. When does the challenge start?

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      BRILLIANT – 30 DAYS OF YOGA, TRAMPOLINING AND EATING SOMETHING GREEN EVERY DAY. CHALLENGE STARTS AS SOON AS YOU CAN GET THE TRAMPOLINE FIXED BUT THIS SATURDAY 1ST SEEMS LIKE A GOOD PLACE TO START?

      Reply
  2. Elizabeth

    I’m with you Marianne! I’ve so been there. My goals are really similar to yours: exercise 30 mins every day, meditate for 5 mins every morning, plan each day the night before, chip away at my screenplay one day a week 🙂 Let’s do it x

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      Brilliant, Elizabeth. We’re leading parallel lives. Have you started the screenplay yet? Are you going to dedicate a whole day to it? Which day? How many hours on that day? Look I’m getting strict.

      Reply
  3. Louize

    I am half way through the Whole30 – no dairy, carbs, sugar or booze for 30 days. The toughest part is staying off the scales! I fwelt the same about alcohol – who was actually in control!! Well I am (at least for the next 15 days!!)
    Good luck – but I’m sure you wont need it x

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      Oh yes, saw an article about that – it looks good. Congrats you on staying with it for 15 days. Are you feeling better in yourself? Energy levels etc? x

      Reply
      1. Louize

        Yes I do – I wasn’t sleeping and felt stiff, sluggish – generally yuck. It’s great – I feel less puffy, bloated, my head is clearer, my skin looks less red, I denfinately have more energy and some nights I even sleep right up until 5/6am. Even exercising is less painful!

        Reply
  4. Bob Whittle

    Do I detect a hint of procrastination in your response to Eva’s Email?..DO IT NOW ( Not Saturday)..I’m not making any promises but I’ll let you know if I fail..

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      No procrastination – my no drinking started on Saturday but want to give people time to get on board.

      Reply
      1. bob whittle

        First day over and all resolutions still intact…Res.1-No booze. This is going to be tough. I’m out tonight with the skittle team and I normally only have one booze free night a week…Wish me luck.

        Reply
  5. Barney

    This is an amazing coincidence. I had decided to give up booze for November and exercise for at least 30 minutes every day. I have also decided to cut down considerably on sugar. I’m delighted to have someone to do it with!

    Reply
  6. Iva

    Well, I would like to join you, too. My biggest challenge is not to eat any sweet stuff for 30 days. I’ve just devoured a marzipan stick covered with chocolate prior to this 😉
    I’ve been reading your blog for several months. Really like it!

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      Ha ha ha Iva – my mum is the biggest sucker for marzipan, she can literally eat packet after packet. I’m so happy to have you joining in, it makes it much more fun. So no sweet things for you for the next 30 days, officially starting 1st November. xx

      Reply
  7. David Palmer

    I started running in August and Slimfast in July. Ive lost over 2 stone and can run 3 miles further than when I started. ((1.5 now 4.5)

    So I’m ahead of the game BUT I have a stone left and a half marathon to train for so let’s carry on together!

    Reply
  8. Michelle Bunt

    I’ll join you. My commitment is to do Whole30 for 30 days, and also to submit a minimum of two job applications and two writing pitches every week seeing as I’m soon to be unemployed!

    Reply
  9. Sarah

    Just re-read this Marianne, and have vowed that if I start to waiver during my 30 days, I’m going to read your post again and remember what it feels like when you eat healthy, stay off the booze etc etc… I’ve done it before and really want to feel like that again. It’s typical isn’t it… I’m out nearly every Saturday in November with friends (something we rarely do) and I nearly backtracked and changed my challenges (as the no-caffeine one is also bothering me lol – I LOVE my coffee!) BUT I then realised it wouldn’t be a challenge if it was easy would it. There is definitely a lot of truth to doing something ‘together’ and having ‘group support’. It’s easy to let yourself down, but when you’ve told others, you don’t want to let them down. Weird isn’t it?
    Can’t remember if I told you I’ve also signed up for a 6 week ‘Little Black Dress’ programme at the gym, so with any luck I’ll be facing Christmas a few pounds lighter, more toned, feeling great, and sleeping like a baby. YAY!!! x

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      Sarah, you could just make the booze free bit during the week if you have things you really want to celebrate in November? But if you go tee-total completely I will be there with you. I started last Saturday, so am five days in. Crazy that I should be so proud of that but I am. And the 6 week Little Black Dress programme sounds like perfect timing! You’ll be looking hot and feeling happy by Christmas. Great great goals. xx

      Reply
  10. Ursula.odonovan@btinternet.com

    30 mins of exercise 5 days a week and speak to recruitment company/apply for roles 3 x a week.

    Reply
  11. Red

    Count me in!! For the 30 day challenge I will:

    1) Complete the 7 min Plank app every day.

    2) Phone 2 old school friends, for a good catch up as we only ever communicate through texts and social media. I can’t remember the last time that we spoke on the phone.

    3) Keep going on my new AF journey. I stopped drinking alcohol 70 days ago and have noticed lots of positives. If anyone else is planning on giving up alcohol, I recommend a website called soberistas.com. This website is very supportive and has really helped me on my journey so far. (Hope that’s ok to do Marianne?).

    4) Make time at least 3 times a week for my kids to do their school reading with me. Between work, homework and routine chores like dinner, washing and housework it’s hard to fit everything in.

    5) Sort out my son’s bedroom and sell/donate any toys he’s outgrown.

    Reply
    1. Marianne Power Post author

      Brilliant Red, have heard good things about soberistas, must check it out. Thank you – and am totally with you re picking up the phone and having a proper chat. That’s been on my mind recently. Good luck and keep us posted!
      mx

      Reply
    2. Marianne Power Post author

      Hi Red, how are you? How are you doing with your challenge? I really liked your goals – have you picked up the phone and made time for reading with your kids? I hope you’re doing well. Keep in touch. Mx

      Reply
  12. Sarah

    have vowed to myself to read this every day for inspiration, more if I feel a wobble coming on! #endgoal #new30daychallenge xxx

    Reply

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