I’m taking the H2Only Challenge with three friends to raise money for the RNLI. This means we will drink only water for 10 days from 5pm on Tuesday, September 13th, until 5pm on Friday, September 23rd. No coffee, tea, squash, pop, wine – even fizzy water is banned! It has to be just plain water, “H2Only”. You can sponsor me, Beckie, Karen and Keith at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/createh2only.
Apologies for missing a blogging day yesterday – this flipping cold has completely wiped me out. I’m still at death’s door today, but I didn’t want to skip another day.
Much to our surprise, my friends and I are finding the challenge harder than ever. We bemoaned our fate at church this morning while everyone around us washed their sausage rolls and doughnuts down with tea and coffee.
We all expected that it would be getting easier by now but we all agreed that this weekend has been tough. I suppose at the start you get carried along by the novelty of it all, but by this mid-point we are all just grinding towards the finish line. I’m also feeling rather disappointed that I haven’t suddenly got gorgeously radiant skin! Maybe I need to increase my water intake as we enter the home straight to give my skin a big blast. Or maybe drinking more water just doesn’t really have much impact on rosacea. Or maybe I just need to give it more time. In any case, I’m dreaming of a cup of coffee to put hairs on your chest on Friday at 5pm.
I’ve noticed in the H2Onlies Facebook group that a few people are throwing in the towel. If you’ve never done something like this you would be surprised at how hard it actually is. It sounds so easy, I was almost a little embarrassed to ask for sponsorship. It doesn’t sound anywhere near as impressive as running a marathon, does it? But what you drink is so intertwined with your daily life and habits and the fabric of society, that it ends up colouring everything you do.
This challenge makes me think about one of my favourite authors, Gretchen Rubin, and her work on habits. It’s worth doing her quiz to find out if you are an Upholder, Obliger, Questioner or Rebel – namely, how you respond to expectations – because it gives you so much insight into yourself. I’m a Questioner (“Questioners question all expectations; they’ll meet an expectation if they think it makes sense”), so essentially I weighed up the positives and negatives to doing this challenge, decided to do it and there we go. But I imagine that people who respond differently to expectations (I’m looking at you Rebels, and you Obligers, to an extent) might find this extra-difficult, if they even decided to volunteer for it at all.
It’s also cemented for me (if there was ever any doubt!), that I am 100 per cent an Abstainer rather than a Moderator, another of Gretchen’s distinctions. Even though I miss coffee and, to a lesser degree, Coke, it’s easier for me to go completely cold turkey. If I cheated and had a sip of coffee, the entire mug would be down my throat in seconds. I wouldn’t be able to stop at a little bit. Maybe I just need to draw the line and say “I am not drinking Coke ever again”. Maybe I will do just that.
PS I have to give a special shout out to my friend, Beckie, who is also doing this challenge and told me at the start of our first aid course today that there was tea and coffee available in the other room! Nooooooooooo!