Well, I did promise that I would give an update on my Drinkaware App after a month, so being a man that sometimes keeps his word, I shall do so.
What you will be glad to hear is that I haven’t turned into an evangelical tea total, living off water and celery sticks. However, for those of you hoping I would fall away into drunken oblivion, you will be disappointed.
My biggest achievement has been going from having at least one alcoholic drink every day, to having thirteen clean days in the month of September, which must be my biggest dry month since a bronchial infection in my late teens. That’s not a boast, it’s just a fact.
These days off have generally been earlier on in the week and I have not drunk on Monday or Tuesday on any week in September. Conversely, I have still been drinking on every Friday and Saturday, as you can see by the blatant trends on the chart.
Charting alcohol: Can you guess what days are on the weekend?
What I have noticed is that on the days I don’t drink, I think about it being a day off within half an hour of waking up, so it is a lesson to me what a habit it had become. As I have said before, it is an extremely rare occasion when I am rolling around drunk, but I must accept there has been a dependency factor going on here.
What I tend to do on the non-drinking days is find myself something to do that is constructive when I am at home alone and not at Jennifer’s. This has included sorting out my sock draw, framing some pictures, cooking, decorating the house and rubbing joint cream into my knee. Proof that you can still live a rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle without booze.
The key question, and one my son asked earlier, is do I feel better for the cleaner living during the week?
Yes, I do. Not substantially yet, but there is no doubt that I am sleeping better and therefore feeling sprightlier. I have also had a reduction in migraines (from an average of two to none a month) but I am not going to link that just yet, as it may be coincidence and I don’t want to give myself false hope.
I also think I may have lost a little bit of weight. However, I don’t ever weigh myself, so I am not certain. My clothes do seem a little less snug around my waist, so I reckon I have done you know. The good news just keeps coming, or does it?
Well no, because if we are going by the rule of the doctor and the limits that are advised, I should have consumed a maximum of sixty units in September. I consumed 142 units, so over twice the recommended limit. That certainly pissed on my parade and made me wonder what I was knocking back before I had 13 days off in a month? 200 maybe? 250 even? I am probably better off not knowing.
With all that considered, I am quite glad I found the Drinkaware App as it has been an education for me and has done what is says on the tin (or the app in this case). What does surprise me is that after seeing Drinkaware on Facebook, is the amount of people who like to rant against it as if they are experts.
No one is saying you have to use the App, or even adhere to it, but one bloke even went on there to tell the world that he drinks 10 pints of Stella every night and it has never done him any harm. Why did you join the App and the Facebook group then mate?
Everyone works in different ways, but the Drinkaware App has encouraged me to have more clean days as well as cutting down on having another beer or glass of wine just for the sake of it. All it will achieve is an additional middle of the night pee as my bladder starts feeling the effects of being 50 years old.
What it hasn’t stopped me doing is going out at weekends and enjoying a beer or two or a bottle of wine. My capacity for alcohol is less now anyway and whereas as in my twenties I could stick away 10-12 pints on a night out, now, 4-5 pints sends me spiralling towards hangover territory.
As many of you who know me are aware, I am not mentally or physically equipped for hangovers and I now dread them more than I look forward to going out on the beer.
Which is probably a good thing isn’t it?