January Detox II


Happy New Year!

Was it really a whole year ago I embarked on my first Mega Detox Challenge? I guess it must be!

Those of you reading since last January will know I don’t really like making New Years Resolutions as they tend to be rather wishy washy, but I do like a good shorter term challenge with well-defined (-ish) parameters. They are great because you know they have a set end date, so if what you are doing turns out not to be worthwhile, you can still plough through to the end and then give it up without feeling like a failure. Conversely if it turns out to give you some positive life changing revelations, then hopefully some of that good shit will stick with you. So in the spirit of joining everyone in the country after having eaten and drunk far too much over the festive period, I will submit to another Detox Challenge!

The rules this year will be slightly different to last year, which was probably a little to harsh on myself, in the running department at least (read the rules from last year here!)

So anyway I am cutting back slightly on the running frequency, but upping the length on at least one run per week instead. I am also playing squash once or twice a week at the moment so don’t want to knacker myself out for that (although that is not part of this challenge,  incidentally it is great way to detox as you end up sweating half your body weight out each game! 🙂 )


The Rules

  • Run 2 x 1 mile run per week and one 2+ mile run per week.
  • Eating – No Added Sugar!
  • No alcohol 1

The challenge starts today, 5th Jan, and will end on 31st Jan as that is a Saturday and I will no doubt have a beer then 🙂


What’s the point?

As Mr 1500 explains well here when he took it upon himself to try eating Soylent 2 for a week, a reset is often necessary for any kind of natural system, including our own bodies and minds. I have also signed up (again) to two half marathons for late Feb/early March so the running part will hopefully get me back up to speed with that.

With the running part of last years challenge I looked at average one mile timings each week and got that down from 7:32 in week 1 to 7:04 in week 4. This time round as I am running less, plus feel like I am starting from a much fitter baseline, I’ll be looking to break my PB for a mile and two miles.

I’m not currently sure what they’d be(!), but I am going to pick the following figures out of the air:

  • 5:59 for 1 mile – Although I secretly hope to do much better! This goal is not the least inspired by Huw who states one of his goals in life is to run a 4:59 mile in his millionaire post. I’m certain this is well out of reach for this particular challenge for me but want to see how far I can eat into the 5 minute zone!
  • 13:00 for 2 miles 3 – I’ve not done much speed running (this kind of pace is very speedy for me at least!) over the 1 mile length so this one is a bit of an unknown. This could be harder to beat than the one mile one I think, to keep it going for the whole 2 miles!

In terms of the eating side of things, last year I tried no caffeine for a month and found it to be beneficial, but there is not much point in doing it again this month as I don’t drink much caffeinated tea nowadays. So I’ll try the alcohol thing again, and also a no added sugar challenge which I have tried on and off over the last year or so! 4 This one is going to be the hardest I think (there is sugar in everything!), or another way of looking at it – will require the loosest rules to achieve a pass!

The benefits for me on the no added sugar thing are numerous though:

  • More consistent energy levels throughout the day (minimizes blood sugar level crashes)
  • Less headaches in the morning (I tend to get “Sugar Hangovers” if I eat sweet stuff the night before, does anyone else find this?!)
  • Better teeth and gums (getting a lot of bleeding after all the sweeties over Xmas… not good!)
  • Numerous others as discussed by Zoe from Eco Thrifty Living here

Well that’s it for now! I don’t think I’ll do a challenge log this year unless something really amazing happens, so I’ll just keep some notes and write up a post on how I did at the start of February.

How about you? Fancy joining in? Any Resolutions or challenges regarding detoxing, money saving, or anything else going on in January? Let us know what you are doing in the comments! Cheers!


  1. I was going to just say “try to not drink much alcohol” as I have a birthday to attend to mid january, but just realised I have to give blood 2 days later anyway so probably best I don’t drink! So have upgraded this option to a full no alcohol one. Mrs TFS will be doing this anyway so at least I have someone to be sober with 🙂
  2. No, I was never tempted to add this into the challenge rules!!!
  3. We have a local Park Run which is 5km (~2.5 miles) which runs every Saturday, so I am hoping to take part in this at least a couple of times. It will be hard to get a PB as there are a lot of people and one track paths to contend with, but it’s a nice event to attend. Best of all it’s free!!! If you fancy it check out the list of events here, there are loads so likely there is one local to you! Even if you’ve never run before I would recommend it, there are runners of all abilities attending.
  4. Astute readers may remember it was due to be a challenge last May but I never got round to it. January will be much easier month to attempt this in I think!