I love setting myself dietary challenges. Making small adjustments to particular things I consume, for at least a month (roughly one moon cycle!), seeing how I go and how I feel about the temporary changes afterwards.
28 days ago, I set myself a daily challenge to drink at least 2 litres of filtered water, on top of any tea, coffee and water I naturally obtain through food.
I was hoping to see a massive change in the way I feel, my skin be blemish-free, my body be bountiful with heaps of energy and feel-good vibes. But alas, I’m at that end point of the challenge and unfortunately I haven’t felt any of those things. I thought it would be really easy to do and stick to but it actually wasn’t.
I failed…miserably! In fact, setting myself restrictions to consume a certain amount of water each day made me go the opposite way and I kind of rebelled against my own rules.
I set alarms on my phone to make sure I drank a certain amount of water by a certain time in the day, fill up my bottle and keep up with the quota for the day. But, I soon got used to ignoring those alarms, found them annoying and ended up reaching for the jug to make myself a more heartwarming cup of tea instead.
On the 1st May, when I started the challenge, I thought I’d take a photo of myself (selfie before!) and then compare it with a miraculous transformation, I am now, after having stuck to my daily water minimum. But, no change, I won’t bore you with my selfie comparison. I see no difference because I actually haven’t been able to stick to this because it was too restrictive.
However, there have been few positives that I have pulled from this challenge though. I’m not one to dwell on things! I always try and see the best in situations:
- Listen To Your Body – I have learnt that my body is not a machine based on a consumption formula. One day I may drink 3L of water, the next 1L. If I’m thirsty I drink. If I feel like water (which I do normally glug away quite happily), I’ll drink water. If I feel like a hot drink, I’ll have a hot drink. If I feel like the odd glass of wine (sometimes more than odd), I’ll have one. Listening to your body’s food and drink needs is a good habit to get into.
- It’s About Lifestyle Moderation – The first part of the month has been really busy for us with work and a few personal endeavours (busy, but all good!). My sleep went out of the window, resting too and exercise, which is pretty minimal with kids, was an absolute zero. I might have the healthiest diet in the world and stick to my water quota but if my lifestyle isn’t balanced to match then I don’t feel or look my best. Everything in moderation and I’ve learnt to find my balance, from not having a balance!
- Not To Put Too Much Pressure On Myself With Food & Drink – This time, setting myself a daily water goal, had the opposite effect. I was probably doing alright day-to-day with my water consumption and putting well-intended rules on myself just made me want to do the opposite and not drink water.
- Be ‘Real’ All Of The Time – My Real Food Generation Blog, which I just love undertaking in my spare time, is about the ups and downs of our ‘real food’ journey. The successes and the fails. I’m not going to gloss over things and say everything is fine. I’m not going to shout out that I’m super-mum, we’re a super-family and this is super-easy to do, when it’s not. This is the real us and I’ll tell you when it’s been hard but also celebrate the good times when we encounter them too. This challenge was a little harder to do than first expected but that’s ok, it’s good to mix things up once in a while and find where you’re most comfortable at.