Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Make Mine a Double

When I watch Mad Men (LOVE), I am always amazed by the sheer amount of alcohol they all drink each day. Late morning office meeting? Let's pour some scotch on the rocks. Brainstorm with the boss at 2pm? Whiskey it is. After-work social with the family? Vodka martinis, straight up. Actually, make that a double. And it's not just the men. Betty Draper holds her own with her fav the Tom Collins, and you always see Peggy throwing back some with the boys. Image Credit

Good lord, how are they still standing at the end of the day, let alone making it into work again the next?

Don't get me wrong. I am an Irish-Catholic Betty through and through. I can make a martini with my eyes shut, always have a stocked liquor cabinet, and hate Sundays because that means you can't buy alcohol at the store down here. Aside: I strongly oppose Georgia Blue Laws. 

But something else plays strongly in my head. I worked really, really hard for the first five months of the year, watching my diet, exercising hard, and taking care of ME. And you know what? It felt really great. Fabulous, actually. And you know what else? Alcohol wasn't a big part of the plan. It just couldn't be if I wanted to succeed. It actually turned into a convenient way to make more of my weekends, waking up refreshed and ready for the day, rather than nursing a headache from the late party the night before. I also went back to being a pretty "cheap date" ;)

But then June and July happened. I had social plans galore. I may or may not have had a few more drinks than normal on a few occasions. I may or may not have gotten more used to that routine again, remembering how fun it was to have wine with dinner, or hang with friends over drinks and pizza on a Saturday night.

So, on a late July day, after realizing all of this and how it was all adding up to my less-than-stellar healthy feeling these days, I decided it was time. August was to be a month with no alcohol. I even gave it a name, too: Alcohol-Free-August.

(I first named it "Booze-Free For My Bod" but decided that was a little too Working Girl meets AA.)

Funny enough, I am not alone in this endeavor -- a friend in town has chosen the very same mission (with the same name too, Katie you rock), and I know others out there abstaining for the sake of marathon training and weight loss, as well.

Perhaps this is something you might want to try, too? Don't get me wrong, it is a challenge. Just think about every social gathering you go to. They all have drinks, and unless people are pregnant, it seems like everyone is drinking. To avoid the "Where's your drink?!" question, I have learned to have at least something in my hand at all times. People assume that Diet Coke in your solo cup has rum in it, too. As a child, my parents used to give us Shirley Temples as our "drinks" during cocktail hour. Guess what? Shirley Temples as adults are just as tasty, look quite fancy in a bar glass, and make you feel like you are treating yourself. 

A closing "toast," if you will -- may we who pursue this challenge finish in September feeling leaner and more svelte ... with a considerably lower tolerance :)

PS. Update 8/12: I got SO many comments on this post on Facebook, Twitter, and IM. It seems people are very 50-50 on the whole idea. They either have done it or want to do it themselves, or are utterly flabbergasted that I would ever imagine it to start with :P


Unknown said...

so, i was going to give up on alcohol-free august but i am now feeling rejuvenated and you are totally holding me accountable for doing what i said i was going to do. i broke the rules while with my family this past weekend, so i'm going to just do alcohol-free-most-of-august-and-one-week-in-september but i think the end goal will be the same :) THANKS for unknowingly holding me accountable!

Chelsea said...

My favorite non-drink drink at a bar is just club soda and lime. Looks, feels and tastes like a vodka soda or tonic:)

Erica said...

HATE the Ga Blue Laws... Props to you for Alcohol-Free-August! My bday is at the end of August, so I know with 100% certainty, I won't be alcohol free. Good luck though, that is awesome!


Unknown said...

Katie - you BET! Go us!! Good luck. It's def a challenge, I have had to turn down a lot of great sounding drinks, but I am trying to still go out and see people at functions, even without a cocktail in hand :)

Unknown said...

Chelsea - you are GENIUS. What a great suggestion, thank you!

And E - it is def a challenge with things like your bday coming up! Thus why I am doing it this month and not next, when I have game days and a cruise to look forward to :)