I was never much of a drinker. In my 20’s I drank occasionally when I was out socially but never at home. Slowly, I introduced the occasional glass of wine on a weekend to the point where I was drinking 1 and half to 2 bottles each evening at the weekend. This continued throughout my 30’s and even though I wanted to reduce how much I drank, my attempts were always fleeting and unsuccessful.

Finding OYNB

As I reached my 40’s, I regularly completed Dry January but would then slip back into old habits. At Christmas, I spotted an article about One Year No Beer. I had been drinking all through the holidays and felt terrible. So I took the leap and signed up for the 28-Day Challenge with the aim to complete 90 days after.

On this attempt I completed nearly 5 months AF and felt amazing! I then focused on moderation which I did for a few months but fast forward to the next Christmas I was back to square one.

I tried a couple of other times throughout the year but I always slipped back because I would romanticise alcohol and has terrible FOMO (fear of missing out). There is always something to pin a drink on after all. Birthday, gig, weekend, holiday, bad day, good day … you get the gist! This time however, my mindset is completely changed! I get it.

Not drinking is not missing out.

It is liberating for those of us all or nothing drinkers. Those things you think you can’t do without a drink, you absolutely can!

I am now day 168, just 2 weeks away from 6 months AF and I feel amazing. I have just returned from my first ever AF holiday which was brilliant. I love my AF life and have no plans to drink again. I have gained so much from OYNB and I honestly don’t think I have could have done it without the OYNB Challengers Facebook group. What an amazing bunch of likeminded people. Always there to offer advice, support and a virtual hug when you need one. I am inspired by them every day and as a result it has pushed me too.

My AF achievements

I have lost nearly 2 stone, I work out 6 days a week (and LOVE it) and I am completing my big challenge to cycle to London Ride 100 in 6 weeks. My stress and anxiety levels are the best they have been in years and my relationship has benefited in so many ways too.

If someone asked me if they should join OYNB I would tell them to do it in a heartbeat. It has been the best decision I have made for my health and wellbeing for many years. Thank you to the whole team and every single member for their help and support.


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