The Happiness Project & a Sugar Fast

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Do you ever just have one of those years? Man, 2013 sucked. For a variety of reason both in and outside of my control I just had a year. Wonderful things happened. I raised my two girls. I have a husband who is great and supportive. I have strong faith. I have a job that pays the bills, a nice home and pretty things to fill it with… but it was one of those years where none of that seemed to matter. I was stressed and didn’t care to see the good in all things and all people. I just wanted to get through the day (the year!) and wasn’t feeling fulfilled.

I want to change that. I’m not too into New Year’s resolutions so I am rebelliously starting a few days early. I started reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin and was inspired. A few weeks ago I wrote my 34 before 34 list so I’ve decided to use it as my guide to begin some things in the pursuit of happiness.

One of the things that tops my list is just generally getting healthier. Yeah, yeah. I know we all have it on our list…. but I struggle. I’m a chubby gal. I come from chubby midwesterners. I ate too many refined carbohydrates as a child and didn’t exercise enough. Now that I’m more educated, I eat better and exercise regularly but I still struggle to get weight off and maintain a healthy balance in life. I’ve had two beautiful children but I’ve put on baby weight with each of them and the stress and time constraints of parenting have given me excuses to just keep it on.

Time for a change.

To kick my health happiness off, I’m going on a 100 day sugar fast. Ugh. The holidays! I felt like the whole month of December was a sugar binge! It’s everywhere and virtually unavoidable. I thought the post-Christmas yuck of coming off all of those treats would be a great time to start while it was still fresh in my mind.

Here are my rules:

  • No sweets–the obvious stuff like cookies, cake, soda, candy
  • No sugary processed foods–the less obvious stuff like nutrition bars, “fruit” snacks, sweet cereal, etc.
  • No adding sugar to foods–no sugar in my coffee, no sugar on my oatmeal
  • No artificial sweeteners

That’s pretty much it. I’ll have natural sugars like fruit and allow myself a tablespoon of honey with my tea. I’ll cut down on alcohol (and its “alcohol sugars”) but won’t cut it out completely. April 5th will be my 100th day.

I’m on day 3 and so far, so good! I’ve had to be a lot more concious of my choices. With the girlies, it’s so easy to pick up a fruit snack or a sweet cracker but I’ve held out and am also planning to cut a lot of this junk out of their diets too. I haven’t had any negative side effects yet but everything that I read says it’s coming.

How will you start your happiness project? What tops your list?

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