30 Days No Sugar & Cold Showers Challenge – Update 1

It’s you against you. Challenge yourself for the better.

Why am I doing this challenge?

Thanks to being challenged and inspired by a friend of mine who previously did the Cold Showers challenge I decided to do it as well. His encouragement and support are greatly appreciated.

In addition, I wanted to test my discipline, perseverance, willpower and ability to control myself on a daily basis. Embarking on this unconventional challenge which can be done by anyone anywhere and doesn’t require much preparation. I realized I can get out of my comfort zone one step at a time each day, reaping possible benefits and hopefully not getting pneumonia from the cold.

Why no sugar & no warm showers?

I was considering doing no alcohol and no smoking challenge, but considering I do not really go out that much and only smoke sometimes when I have a drink I concluded that I would really challenge myself two or three days out of the 30. This would not really present the same level of difficulty as the latter. While with No Sugar and Cold Showers I will have to be accountable to myself all day every single of the 30 days. Just a quick note, by no sugar I include all different types of sweets, confectionery, soda drinks, ice-creams, chocolates, etc. and the cold showers will be self-explanatory I guess. Even though I fail to see the point in having a cold shower apart from the possibility of getting a cold after, but I guess the beauty of it is that it is pointless and it will only test your mental strength and willpower.

Why is it going to be hard?

No Sugar:

  1. I work in an office – SNACKS AND SWEETIES 24/7 constant supply of them and you just can’t help and reach out to them every now and then
  2. 2. It’s summertime – I LOVE MY ICE CREAM MAN
  3. 3. I just came back from a holiday and I bought 1 kilo of sweets, chocolates and confectionery
  4. 4. Indulging in chocolates and sodas every now and then is a hobby of mine and probably to a larger part of the population on this planet as well

Cold Showers:
1. AGAIN… REALLY… a nice warm shower is the thing I look forward the most after a long day at work and a hard workout at the gym.
2. It’s Summer, but who cares I am in Scotland and here it is cold all the time, and what’s better after a cold day – WARM SHOWER!!!

Right, so I think you get my point. Honestly 30 days no sweets will be hard but not impossible, though cold showers every day no matter what unless I am not hangover every day at a beach resort in the Caribbean it will be beyond challenging.

DIFFICULTY = 9/10

 

  • Day 1:

I knew that the water is going to be cold and unpleasant, but once I jumped under the shower I immediately regretted my decision to start this challenge and doubts started creeping into my head. The cold showers were much more refreshing and made me feel completely awake while my showering time cut 10 fold. Another bonus is going to be your savings on electricity/gas for not heating up water.

Bonus Tip: If you give all the sweets and confectionery away it will make your challenge much easier.

  • Day 2:

A challenging sugary situation has been presented in front of me today as a two-hour conference and subsequent lunch with all the free sweets, cakes, cupcakes, and pancakes has really left me dumbfounded to explaining why I don’t want anything. My colleagues know me for the office foodie who never misses a chance to try some goodies.

Bonus Tip: For the Cold Showers I would suggest you get a warm bathrobe for immediately after you get out.

  • Day 3-5:

So far so good! Although I have started postponing and dragging along the time until showering as the thought of the ice cold water running over my body is just painful. I am trying to get used to it, but it’s hard to keep under the water for more than 20-30 second without moving away. Sugar, on the other hand, is not being such an issue and I feel that my determination to go about daily tasks is increasing.

Bonus Tip: Skipping the confectionery, soda and ice cream aisles in the supermarket helps a lot. Also washing your hair separate from the body really makes things more bearable.

  • Day 6:

I have found out about Wim Hof – The Iceman who is a Guinness World Record Holder who’s has built incredible mental and physical resistance to the cold. He uses a set of breathing techniques and meditation to cope with extreme temperatures. I have tried his simple intense breathing technique and it works like magic.

  • Day 7-8:

I had serious doubts today on whether to get under the freezing water or not. Like what’s the point, I deserve that shower, you won’t really know if I showered with warm water anyway. Although I remembered that this is a challenge to myself more than anything, so I quickly turned the tap to freezing cold and jumped under the shower.

Bonus Tip: One of the concentration techniques in meditation where basically your thoughts are just passing clouds in the sky and you are an observer of your thoughts helped me get past my doubts. As the doubts creep in my mind I didn’t take possession of them and just watch them come and go while jumping into the freezing water cold turkey.

  • Day 9:

Surprisingly there aren’t many benefits to warm showers. In fact, the negatives outweigh the benefits and a warm shower is levelled down to luxury rather than a necessity in your life. These are following benefits of cold showers:

  1. Cold Showers burn fat and refresh your body
  2.  They boost recovery after exercise
  3. Increase mood and alertness as well as fight off depression
  4.  Strengthens the immunity system, improve blood circulation and help the cardiovascular system
  5.  Give you attractive hair and skin

Interesting Fact: ”Scottish showers” are the hot-cold showers which are James Bond’s favourite. They consist of the use of warm/hot water changes and slowly finishing off with freezing cold water.

  • Day 10:

While I am improving a lot on the cold side of this challenge sweets are proving to be much easier to handle for me. These are some negatives I have found about eating sugary products:

– Sugar can give you cancer
– Sugar is highly addictive
– Gives you heart disease and raises your cholesterol levels
– Major cause of obesity among children and adults
– Bad for your teeth and has no essential nutrients

These were the first 10 days of this challenge. Hope you enjoyed reading and stay tuned for the next.

Regards,

Steven

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