“One doesn’t get over 30 years of drinking in just 28 days” – This resonated with me. I knew I needed to carry on and committed to the 90-Day Challenge.
It was ‘way’ back in 2018 that I realised that I was probably consuming a little too much alcohol. I’d been a regular drinker since about the age of 21 and knew that I was consuming a little too much for good health. I was about to turn 50 and I’d gotten into running at the time. I wanted a positive change in my life. I was advised by my running coach to lose some weight and cut out alcohol – I remember my coach saying to me – “You can’t be a runner and a drinker, the two don’t go hand in hand. You might be able to do it, but nowhere near to the best of your ability”. That was the kick start I needed, but I knew I’d need that little extra help.
After searching for alcohol-free aids on the internet, I came across the #OYNB program, which seemed to fit the bill. I joined the program for an initial period of 28 days and I must be honest, I was unsure what to expect. Whilst I did know I’m not an alcohol dependent, my habit was such that my daily 4 bottles of Leffe (6.6%), was a lovely chill out yet, promoted anxiety within me. I knew with that amount of alcohol, I could cope, and the breathalyser wouldn’t affect me in the morning – (I’m a driver by trade). I’d have a little more when I had a rest day from work but I knew it was unhealthy. I need not have worried as the guys at #OYNB put me at ease straight away.
What became very helpful for me is the uncommitted accountability to the FB group. I found that by interacting with like minded individuals really helped my cause and I made some great friends.
Wanting to go further
After 28 days had passed I was feeling a little underwhelmed by my achievement. The “arrival fallacy” had kicked in and I was looking for the wow factor – this didn’t happen and after I posted a video onto the Facebook about my findings, a wonderful comment from a fellow #OYNB challenger gave me hope –
“One doesn’t get over 30 years of drinking in just 28 days” – This resonated with me. I knew I needed to carry on and committed to the 90 program.
I interacted with the group on a daily basis and when 90 days passed, I found myself on a roll. I continued for 271 days that year. I don’t know exactly why I started to drink but I feel the abstinence did work. Although I didn’t achieve some initial goals of losing weight and running faster, I was calmer in myself, was not getting as stressed at the usual simple daily tasks and had started to participate in my previous profession, golf.
In January 2021 when I decided to have another crack at the #OYNB challenge again, this time for the year. I knew I had enough “ammunition” to challenge myself through celebrations and holidays and was ready to reach the year. When I made it through my boys 18th and 21st birthdays without a drop, I knew I’d made it.
On the 3rd January 2022 I “celebrated” #OYNB. I did actually feel amazing and wanted to show my happiness on the FB group by posting a thank you video. I was chuffed by the comments and now feel my identity has changed from a person who is trying to stop drinking to a person who is actually a non drinker. I understand so much more now about why I drank and feel this challenge has given me confidence to pursue my new identity. I’m even participating in PGA Professional Senior events. Watch this Space!
A proud achievement
I’m very proud of all the success I’ve had in life, I feel that the successful completion of #OYNB challenge is the 3rd best in my life – behind marrying my wife and the birth of my boys!