I took on this challenge because honestly I love a new fad diet and that’s really what I expected it to be. I didn’t fully look in to what was involved, I just signed up. It is the ‘Sugar Free September Challenge’ with Rachel Holmes. I thought I ate pretty healthy food, lots of fruit and veg with meat and fish but like many people I’m sure, I tend to ignore those biscuits, cakes and chocolates that I eat! I have to add that the last 2 months have been stressful. Moving house and my son starting school have meant stress, takeaways and chocolate.
Before I started the challenge I warned my husband of the potential rage that could be heading his way as it had with many of the diets I had tried over the years, that left me starving and craving naughty treats. He has been really surprised at the outcome so far….
The two days before I started the challenge, I consumed my own body weight in donuts, sweets, desserts, chocolate, more than I normally eat but it was the thought of not being allowed all these delicious things that made me want them more. This was obviously the worse thing to do because my body then struggled at first to give up sugar.
Day one was fine, I honestly didn’t struggle at all. I felt positive about things to come. Day two couldn’t have been more different. I woke with the worse headache and had to force my breakfast down through nausea. I felt so bad I had to come home from work and sleep, it was either that or throw up at my desk, it was that bad. Even once the nausea passed my head still felt like it was going to explode and no amount of medication helped. This continued to day three and I considered throwing in the towel. Then day four came around and suddenly I felt great, no sugar cravings, in fact my appetite was much smaller than usual. My energy increased even though I wasn’t sleeping so well.
I should admit that I haven’t done any of the exercises I was meant to do but I did walk 30 mins three days this week so that’s better than nothing. I have given up sugar, refined and natural (but not fruit) and pasta, bread and most dairy. This is all part of the challenge. I’ve been eating eggs, meat, fish, brown rice, potatoes, coconut milk and coconut milk yogurt, nuts, fruit and of course lots of vegetables.
As the days have gone on I have continued to feel amazing which wasn’t what I expected at all. I have actually found it easy. I even went out to dinner with my husband last night and while I didn’t have a dessert I did have a starter and main course. Alcohol is a judgment call, I was allowed to have it if I really wanted to (although not advised) but chose not to and it wasn’t a problem at all. Today I have spent the day as a volunteer for the Rockinghorse Appeal, helping children to decorate cup cakes. Surrounded by cakes, icing and sweets, and yet I didn’t feel tempted…..I don’t recognise myself.
An added bonus of this is that I have lost a surprising 7lbs in one week which is crazy. I feel amazing and the sleep problem has passed. I don’t know whether it’s the novelty of it, because it is still early days, but right now I feel like this ‘diet’ could really become a new way of life for me. I’m calmer, more relaxed and feeling so positive, let’s see if I’m feeling the same when I write next Sunday or whether the dreaded sugar has won me back.