Why I'm Goin' Sober for November (Or Maybe Longer)
October is over. Kevin and I drank all the booze while dressed as John Mulaney and Nick Kroll's characters George St. Geegland and Gil Faizon from the Broadway Hit Oh, Hello. We ate too much candy and pizza. I'm at least five pounds heavier.
But this month of sobriety isn't just about making up for the backwards step I took Halloween weekend. Story Time:
Roughly 3 years ago, I left college 75 pounds heavier than I entered. The majority of it gained in the last two years after a horrific knee injury and the recently acquired legal alcohol purchasing abilities. I wasn't taking care of myself anymore. I was a former football and rugby player and current fraternity bro alcoholic.
I was losing my breath just walking up short flights of stairs. Women had no desire to talk to me. I wasn't happy anymore. I missed being energetic and moving around. I missed sweating and having the feeling of a hard days work after leaving the gym or walking off the rugby pitch.
When I left that campus, I swore that I would change this. I wasn't going to end up like my childhood idol, Chris Farley. Though I still love his movies and SNL sketches and still regularly dress up as him for Halloween and various other parties, I had done enough book reports in school about him and I had watched enough documentaries to know the demons he battled. I knew what he thought of himself and what he thought others felt about him.
That summer, I barely drank. Maybe once every other week. Sure that doesn't sound like such a big deal, but that was down from 5-7 nights a week every week I was in college. Instead of drinking 5-7 nights, I was in the gym 5-7 nights a week. I began to swim and bike for hours a day. After my first 20 pounds were lost, I gained the confidence to run again for the first time since my knee injury and surgeries. I remember my first mile and how difficult it was to make it past the first quarter mile. By the end of the summer, I had cut 5 minutes off of my mile time, partially thanks to the app C25k (I suggest it to anyone who wants to get into running).
After a year, I had lost 40ish pounds. After two, it was 70. Then I started dating. I had the confidence to talk to women again. Now, I feel the need to have to tell you, I didn't lose the weight for women, it was just a nice bonus. But with dating, my free time became less frequent and my time in the gym went from 5-7 nights a week to 3. I kept eating mostly healthy and working out with my fantastic trainer once a week, but the workouts were fading a bit.
I'm not blaming the girls. I'm not trying to make excuses. What I'm saying is that I was happy. I was content with myself. These girls liked me for me. I still wanted to better myself, but it wasn't a priority anymore.
I've been single for almost half a year now. I've moved to a new state, I've started this website. I've continued our podcast. I've started a new job. My life has been a hustle for the past few months. I went from having almost no more friends while living at home in my hometown, where I had the time to spend in the gym, to living in Iowa, surrounded by friends, family, and my roommate/cousin/co-founder Kevin. I have had the option to go out drinking any weekend I want because my friends are usually up for it.
But in doing so, along with my wonderful allergies making it impossible to breathe, I fell behind on working out again. I had paused my mission to a better lifestyle. I know that I can balance drinking and socializing with my time spent on a treadmill, bike path, and third work out thing, but I always find it better to just quit outright for an extended period of time. Like Bert Kreischer, Joe Rogan, and those other guys did for Sober Octobert (check it out on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast), I'm taking a break from my vices to restart this gym addiction I once had.
Therefore, November's goal is no booze, 60 miles on the track, and 200 miles on a bike.
I have a long way to go on this weight loss and healthy living journey, and it's time to get back on track (no pun intended).
Ok, Steve, but why did you write this?
Well, voice in my head, I'm just trying to let everyone know that they should set goals. Never peak. Never be content when you know you can be better. There will always be missteps in your journey, but don't let them stop you. Even if you trip and fall and stay down for an extended period of time. It's never too late to get back up.
I never want to give up. I'd like to think I've seen myself at my worst and that those days are behind me.
But I do like beer and of course I will drink it again one day.
Here's a song. Peace.