This is a little hard to type. A few months ago, I was mistaken for a 40 year old. Twice. In a week. Not that there's anything wrong with looking like a 40 year old, EXCEPT I just turned 30. I'd really like to look 30-ish for now. Around that same time, I visited my hometown and my Mom told me repeatedly (sorry Mom) that I looked "so tired." Moms and their dang truthfulness. After this, I really started to look at my reflection in the mirror and wonder what was up.
The reality is that I AM tired. SO TIRED. I think all Moms with little ones are permanently tired. But when I reflect on my lifestyle, I wasn't doing much to help myself out in the looks department. I wasn't exercising. I was traveling quite a bit for work and not eating well when I traveled. I wasn't sleeping great for unknown reasons. And I'm 99% sure I was dehydrated. My drink of choice was diet soda and I'm ashamed to say I had 5-6 a day (Mom, earmuffs!) I decided to start by giving up my beloved diet soda.
I gave it up cold turkey, and my first few days without diet soda were tough. I seriously felt shaky and had pounding headaches. These withdrawal symptoms actually added to my resolve to keep it up. I've tried to give it up before and failed. I knew that this time around, I would need some substitutes on hand to keep myself from grabbing a diet soda, so I stocked my fridges at home with alternatives. Water, flavored sparkling water, coconut water, and tea were my go-to's, and I'm happy to tell you that I've been diet soda free for over two months! I'm convinced having convenient, healthier alternatives on hand during times of temptation is what made me give up diet soda cold turkey.
My go-to's have been VitaCoco Water and Fiji water. I stock up on these at Walmart, and then put them in our garage "beer fridge" so they're easy to grab when I'm on the go! So, how do I feel now with two months of better hydration? SO much better, truly. I think I was very dehydrated and definitely was riding a caffeine roller coaster. I'm sleeping much better, and actually have MORE energy now then when I was heavily caffeinated. Weird, right? I'm still "mom tired," but I have a bit more energy, enough to go to the gym 2-3 times a week to lift weights. Huge win in my opinion!
My old company was super progressive about keeping their employees healthy. They started providing fruit and herb "infused" water in the cafeteria each day that you could drink for free. It really helped to make water exciting, and increased our water intake as a company. I took this habit with me when I left, and started infusing my waters with a few fruits and herbs that are known to help "detox" your body, namely lemon, lime and lemongrass. Infusing waters has been another great way make staying hydrated a bit more exciting!
I recently found coconut water and started infusing it, which is pretty much next level. This infused coconut water is packed with nutrients, electrolytes and potassium, and natural sugars. I highly recommend it for a recovery drink (workout or hangover, I won't judge). Lime and lemongrass make this water taste like a delicious lemon-lime tropical drink while actually helping your body out. And lemongrass just has this awesome woodsy, lemony, slightly sweet taste that I can't get enough of! Here's my typical recipe for infused coconut water.
- 8 ounces Vita Coco Pure coconut water
- 1 small lime, sliced
- 2 2-inch pieces of lemongrass stalk
- Pour coconut water into an 8 ounce glass.
- Add lime slices and lemongrass stalk.
- Place in refrigerator and allow to chill for at least 15 minutes, up to an hour.
- If you aren't able to find lemongrass, add one small wedge of lemon to the coconut water as a substitute.