Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Getting to know me

It's interesting to read Badgerdaddy's post below, because of the couple of weeks I spent recently not drinking alcohol.  In total, I had a week on half rations, a fortnight off the sauce altogether and then another spare week on a glass of wine (a small one) per night.

I take his point entirely about "wanting a drink" meaning you're thirsty.  I found some time ago that, particularly in the summer when I come in of an evening wanting a glass of chilled white wine, it's best to start with a glass of water and, once the edge has been taken of my thirst, I'll enjoy the wine just as much but the first glassful will last more than a few minutes.  Indeed, I do try to remember to consider whether I want something to drink because I'm thirsty before I automatically reach for the wine bottle.

By the way, last summer, scouting around for something non-sweet to add to gin, I hit upon pink grapefruit  juice.  Excellently refreshing, much more so than sweet tonic water or similar fizzy mixers.

Anyway, about laying off booze.  I don't generally like sweet drinks - I like fruit juices all right, but they don't hit the spot with dinner in the evening when you're used to wine.  I don't care for squashes and, although lemonade or Coke once in a while is something I fancy, it's rare and always on a hot summer's day, usually when I'm suddenly tired and need a quick boost.  When thirsty, I usually drink water.  Or tea.

I drink tea without milk, so builder's tea isn't for me.  I drink a whole range of teas - at present in the kitchen there are about 8 black teas, a couple of green teas and several fruit and herb 'teas'.  They include Badgerdaddy's redbush tea.  Well, not his personal supply.  His need is greater than mine.  I buy my own.

In that month, I drank whole lots of tea.  To start with, as my pre-dinner drink, I was having tomato juice, which worked for a while but I couldn't face it any more when I came home from hospital.  But after a while, I couldn't face yet another cup of tea and I was fed up, if that's the word, with water.   I was very pleased to get back to lovely wine.

I'm still being fairly moderate - I am pleased, at any rate, to note that I didn't have a problem with limiting what I had or even with stopping altogether - but I'm enjoying a couple of bottles a week.  I'd crept up to about three - I think I was probably a bit sorry for myself and having an extra glassful because of it.  And a pint of beer would be enough.  But for me, tea is no substitute.  Not even redbush.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Living and learning

I had a revelation about a month ago, involving alcohol, and it's meant something of a change in attitude to drinking. I realised, weirdly, that when I think "I really want a beer" what I mean is I really want a drink. So I swapped beer for redbush tea, and as a result have been drinking far, far less.

I still have evenings where I go a bit mental, but much less of them now. Usually if I am away – for example, I got shitfaced in Munich a couple of weeks ago, and in London about 10 days before that. But I didn't enjoy either occasion particularly, and I know it came out of a kind of boredom both times.

So, what does this mean weight-wise? If I weigh myself in the morning, I'm around 96kg I think. That's a guess; in the evenings I'm around 98 or 99, which is not a guess. But it's steady, it's not really going up or down, and I feel good. Still dog walking a lot, but running has fallen by the weigh-side as I've just had my busiest time of the year work-wise. Still working on my knees, so to speak, and they're nice and strong; I've been dreaming about running too, and have verbally agreed to do a marathon in autumn, so cross your fingers. Gym work is progressing very well, since the enforced layoff due to work and travel.

But the change in attitude to drinking is the big change for me. Last night, I had seven bottles of beer. That's just over 3.5 pints. I didn't enjoy it especially, I just did it because I had decided I would. Daft as that sounds, I do that because next time I think it's a good idea, I'll remember the last time. And it will be a while before it seems a good idea, anyway, because it wasn't particularly enjoyable.

I bought a bottle of wine last week, just something cheap my boss had recommended, and it lasted three nights (third night I had none – WonderWife finished it!). I felt rather proud of myself. All change in habits here.

Still, as we're absolutely flat broke, drinking less is probably a very good idea...

In other news, our bag web shop is up and running; anybody wanna buy a one-off handbag or shoulder bag?? I can maybe do you a deal...

PS: I recently met one of my all-time heroes – that means of the three that are alive, I ony have to meet one now... I met Dame Kelly Holmes in Munich airport, and actually went up to her beaming and just said "You're my hero, you and Paula are the reason I started running!" She was absolutely lovely. So nice, but I was utterly starstruck – I forgot to even ask for a photo, or an autograph.

Bugger! moments like that make me want to blog again!