Who's in?

Alright...here's the deal. I was talking with a friend the other night who is really wanting to lose weight. The conversation ended with us challenging each other to go without sugar for all of February (we're going to take a break and allow a small amount on Valentine's Day). I told her that I *guarantee* that she'll lose weight if she drops sugar. I can't wait to see how the month will go!

I went off of all sugar last March, thanks to Shari's challenge. It was the best thing I've done! It made me so much more aware of what I was eating and the fact that sugar is in everything! My personal issue was juice...even though it is fruit, it's very high in sugar (think about an orange - drinking a glass of orange juice is like eating 5-6 oranges in one sitting...more than you should have at once). In that first week of no sugar and no juice, I lost three pounds. By the end of the month, I'd lost six or eight pounds. I've kept that weight off to this day (I'll share my own journey with fluctuating weight and finding a happy size soon) and felt so good without sugar. Since last March, I have not eaten much refined sugar at all. I definitely haven't baked with it and have only eaten it when offered. When I need to use sugar, I always use a natural sweetener and now, I find that I don't need to use nearly as much. I literally have new taste buds...food is better, more flavorful. I overindulged a bit on even the natural sweeteners during the holidays and can feel how much more I've been craving sweets lately, so this is a perfect way to let my body detox and get rid of those cravings again.

There is power in numbers, so my question to you is...will you join us?? The challenge is to go without refined sugar for the month of February (excepting Valentine's Day). You can be as strict as you want to be with it. I am personally going to allow myself a small amount of natural sweetener (such as raw honey on my oatmeal). If there is honey in your whole wheat bread, I think that's okay. If you're a big juice drinker, I'd either cut it way down or go without (I went without it last March during my sugar fast). Do your best and above all, just be aware of how much sugar you put into your body. It's a really eye-opening experience. We're in it together! If you need some accountability, let's check back in with each other once a week to keep the encouragement going.

So...February 1st...who's in??