I read once if you think you're drinking to much, then you probably are. I don't drink 25% of the week, which means I do the other 75%. I'd prefer to flip that around and not drink 75-80% of the time. I'm in my mid 60s now and I like to exercise a lot, and I'm having difficulty with recovery. So drinking could be a contributing negative factor. For most of my life as I ran marathons and other big events, I would quit drinking completely while I was in training. And recently I made a decision to cut back significantly, and it did not turn out that way. I even found myself drinking a little more. So I must admit I have a problem and deal with it. Health and fitness are important to me, so I have that advantage and motivation, once I get my act together and get on a roll. Wish me luck.
Perhaps this forum is a good way to keep me accountable and on track.
welcome jacks. 🤗 it's a good idea to build a bit of a support network. lots of people here are willing to share their knowledge and experiences. have you read any books or visited an AA meeting, these happen virtually too around the clock. I started with the audiobook from Annie Grace, "this naked mind" that was a good fit for me. lots of things you can try to build a routine that keeps you sober. sitting on the fence though is a bad place. i found it much easier once i decided I just wont drink anymore (sounds simple, right?) than trying to moderate. it just prolonged the suffering and eventually i admitted that alcohol will eventually kill me and i will have to quit to survive. at the beginning we all just try to make it one day at a time and try to not worry about much more because just to make it to tomorrow, to wake up without the hangover is already a challenge. but the days keep adding up. 727 days here so far. please keep coming back and let us know how it goes and how we can help. set yourself up to succeed. it's amazing how wonderful these sober days can be. take care.
Thank you Kermit. I appreciate your feedback and I'm listening and absorbing intentionally. I'm not much of a group person, don't see myself in AA meetings, no real reason, just not my thing. I'm not even convinced I'm an alcoholic, but maybe everyone says that. When I was training for ultra marathons I would take a few weeks off or a month off drinking and it wasn't an issue, and I've taken up to 90 days off before, and my reason was performance related. So I feel my health and willpower is strong. But lately, even though I have been exercising regularly, my recovery has been poor, and when I tried to cut back on drinking, it was a challenge, and alcohol won. So now I'm trying to shift my perspective. Maybe I will eventually get to a point of total abstinence, but not there yet. My original plan was to take regular 3-6 days in a row breaks and allow myself 1 day when I could have a few, which will probably lead to only 2-3 beers so minimal ABV, because my tolerance will have dropped. I track my health data daily especially my sleep data, nocturnal HR, heart rate variability, BP, others, so these display the quality of recovery I'm getting in relation to my lifestyle choices, like alcohol, and other things too. I know if I have 1 or 2 beer on occasion, it doesn't affect my recovery. It's when 1 or 2 leads to 3 or 4 on a regular basis I get into trouble and this data shows it. It feels good to talk about this stuff, open up, get it off my chest. It's hard to talk to people because everyone has a bias. I was at a rugby club last weekend, place was full of athletes, and beer was flowing like water. My swim mentor doesn't drink at all and figured that out 40 years ago in Univ. I guess I see myself in both worlds. Time will tell where I end up. Life's a journey. I made it through last night without a hitch. I'm going to the local yacht club today to help some sailors raise their masts, they're all rum drinkers, the plan is to resist! I don't know who said this but I like it; "The dark night of the soul awakens the warrior within."
Please let us know how it goes raising the mast.
thanks for sharing the extra context. I think it took me about 2 more years from where you are now (trying to make plans, rationalizing what i am doing) to realize I would be much better off if I never drink again. it was nothing permanent in my head though, i just had to make it one day at a time anyway. i still think about alcohol every day but compared to the nerve wrecking thoughts trying to moderate back then this is so much easier. I just don't drink anymore and that's just so much simpler than trying anything else. it's much easier to see these days for me how there was just nothing positive about drinking alcohol. you might like the book "habits of a happy brain" it helped me understand the chemistry much better and it sounds like you already know about the runners high and dopamine but maybe brain chemistry will be something to keep you busy with while you don't drink ;) anyway, i hope all goes well raising that mast. since you mentioned performance. something i noticed a year sober was how my new found confidence and self esteem (because i wasn't feeling guilty all the time) really enabled me to reach new heights professionally and as a community member. I am still shocked how i was sabotaging myself before with poison like that.
So that didn't go as planned. It was a long hard day helping step masts. What was supposed to be a few hrs at 9am turned into all day till 5pm. Then invited to the club house for a beer afterwards, could not resist. Not sure what I was craving the most, the social connection or the beer, or both, probably both. Oh well, that adds up to 1 day on and 1 day off, 50%, better than 0% no days off. It's all about improving not perfection. The quest continues ...
So skipped a beat one day there but back on track and no drinking last 2 nights. Felt good today so did a triathlon. I hiked the bluff which is a 15 min vertical hike and then back down, 5,000 row at the gym, and then a 5k stationary bike. So 1 hr 25 min workout, moderate pace. Then a sauna and cold shower to finish off. No drinking tonite so that will be 3 nights in a row, my first goal.
thanks for letting us know. sounds like a fun day. one day at a time.
Feeling sluggish, headache, and lips breaking out in cold sores. Not sure if that's a detox reaction. I didn't exercise today which I normally do most days. Yesterday's triathlon was a big workout, felt like taking the day off. 3 days of not drinking behind me, tonight will be day 4. I've read there's a week or so of toxin release so may have some rough feelings before I feel better.
thanks for letting us know. one day at a time.
If you don't treat it, you'll repeat it. AA treatment has best results. See Harvard/Stanford Cochrane study.
Tired, so tired, very fatigued.
We are listening. Just don't pick up the first drink or drug. It won't help.
welcome back 🤗 sometimes i am too ambitious and I end up not accomplishing much. but that's fine too, I am grateful I got to wake up again without a hangover and get to try again tomorrow. not every day is great but sure better sober. let us know what's going on if you would like.