Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My 3-Month Protest of Deliciousness


Back in August, a friend and I challenged each other to a 3-month test of willpower and self control. For various reasons, we decided to give up alcohol, pasta, and cheese starting the day after Labor Day (September 2nd) until yesterday (December 2nd). Her mom dubbed it a protest of deliciousness. Anyways, it was rough, but I made it!!

Of the three, alcohol was the hardest thing to give up. There are so many other things I can eat, that I almost forgot about cheese and pasta after a while (besides the occasional craving for pizza, mac & cheese, or grilled cheese sandwiches w/tomato soup). I hardly missed them at all, even though I faced a lot of temptation along the way!

The first weekend I gave up cheese, I went to a party that had goat cheese appetizers, cheese-its, Cheetos, nachos (w/cheese), cheese & crackers, and berries. Needless to say, I hogged the berries all night. And when I went to NYC, the first restaurant we ate at was a pizza & pasta joint. I was relegated to having a salad :(

I also missed out on some Cuban corn in NYC because it was covered with cheese!

And some baked brie at a French-Moroccan Restaurant!!

All in all, though, I didn't have too many problems giving up cheese and pasta.

Alcohol, however, is a different story! The first month was the toughest. Since we'd agreed to do the challenge about 2-3 weeks before actually starting it, I had some time to "gear up" and get mentally prepared for it. I warned my friends about it so they wouldn't get caught off guard when I suddenly stopped drinking. Especially since at the time I was having 3+ drinks at least 4 nights a week.

Even with all the mental preparation, it was still hard starting out. The weird part was that I didn't WANT to drink alcohol at all during the challenge, but for the first few weeks I felt strange & awkward. No one ever pressured me to drink, but it just felt unnatural not to (like it was something I SHOULD be doing). I was probably just not used to it and was feeling left out. I had to keep reminding myself that I was doing this for myself, and that I didn't NEED alcohol to have fun. It helped tremendously that my friends were very supportive. Some of them even joined me for a month or so (not counting the friends that already don't drink).

Once I got over it, then the no-drinking thing actually became somewhat of a game. I actually had fun avoiding drinking! During the course of the challenge, I partook in non-alcoholic vegan jello shots,

some home-made fizzy champagne-like flavored water,

and various non-alcoholic cocktails.

I'll definitely have a celebratory night of pizza, mac & cheese, and beer/cocktails this weekend. But in general, I think I've gotten over my obsession with booze and cheese (I was never really that big into pasta). I'm not planning on adding them back into my regular routine, but I'll go back to having them once in a while as an indulgence. I may even go on another no-booze spree after New Years (or not, who knows).


Mary said...

I am very impressed that you were able to give up cheese during your vacation and when confronted with all of that deliciousness!

I'll be doing the no-alcohol Jan 2 - April 2, but not during my week of vacation. So not sure if that really counts? In any case, that will be hard enough on me -- can't imagine cutting out cheese and pasta as well!

River said...

Of course it counts! I think it's important to be realistic with these challenges. Whatever you commit to should be hard, but do-able. I'll definitely be cheering you (and the rest of the no-boozers) on!! *\o/*

For our first challenge, I didn't commit to the whole three months at first. I was about 75% sure I wanted to drink for Halloween, so I gave myself the option to take a break for that one week. But then when the time came, I didn't want/need to drink.