We only have a couple more days remaining in November and December is looking pretty sweet! If you’ve lasted this long in the No Sugar November Challenge then you owe yourself a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS! Not only is it hard to say no to refined sugar, but especially during the holidays when temptations are high and traditions seem to be covered in frosting.
What’s Next? I’ve talked to some people who are continuing with the No Sugar Challenge and only having one cheat day in December. I think this is incredible! Not only are they willing to go at it again but they have learned that it’s making a profound impact on their health. Another option would be to continue the challenge but include a cheat day every 7 days. This is sustainable for many people but it also allows for more slip ups. If you’re not up for following a strict plan going forward, it’s good to re-evaluate the advantages of no refined sugar over the past month and how keeping it out of your diet for the most part would be beneficial.
For me, the advantages I experienced were better quality of sleep, learning new ways to unwind at night or in stressful situations and also curbing my dependency on things like chocolate. I learned how substituting super sweet snacks with things like homemade whole grain muffins sweetened with unrefined sugars like maple syrup provided a higher quality nutrition source rather then a piece of candy. Also, lack of sleep and eating unhealthy is a vicious cycle. Once I put my sleep back on track I wasn’t craving the refined sugar items as much. That sugar rush to stay awake wasn’t needed as much as before. Personally, I will continue to leave refined sugar out of my diet with a few exceptions especially during the holidays. There are Christmas cookies to be made and peppermint bark to be crunched. But as far as going back to where I was before November when I was eating refined sugar on a nightly basis, I’m not going back there. If I do, I know I’ll be restarting this challenge to reset my cravings again.
Where do you go from here? Make a plan for December. Whether or not that plan is structured is up to you. Do you need to keep it 100% out of your diet and allow yourself a weekly cheat day? Or are you able to keep the sugar intake under control without strict weekly guidelines? Whatever plans you make in December I encourage you to write it down. Make it a part of your weekly calendar so you can visually see those reminders of why you took the challenge in the first place and what benefits you experienced.
If you like the idea of a monthly challenge then stay tuned… December is just around the corner and it’s looking like a new challenge is in the works! Get a sneak peak by subscribing to my monthly newsletter below.