NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION
We’ve all done them and we’ve all failed at them. The New Year’s Resolution is the annual tradition that starts off strong and begins to get shaky by week 2. For me, I always renew my vow to the lord of Fitbit and swear that I will get my 10,000 steps a day (and usually do). My second resolution is to do a Dry January – the one month of the year that I abstain from all those tasty beers and whiskies and put myself on a strict regimen of no-beer. It is difficult but I have some strategies that may just help you join me in my annual prohibition.
DRY JANUARY — Much, much easier said than done in the beer industry. My job almost “requires” me to drink beer … or at least sample beer. There are occasions where one must try beer to ensure that it is of the highest quality for one’s customers. I have tried dry January and I have very rarely made it longer than 2 weeks before something gets in the way. One of my tricks was to drink soda water. The ritual of going to the fridge and grabbing a can was still there and I found that went a long way into fooling my brain into thinking we were about to enjoy a nice, frosty beer. The other trick to triumph is to take yourself out of temptation — pub + wings + hockey = beer. It was Newton’s 4th law and a tough one to dodge so take yourself out of the equation for more successful results.
WEEKDAY BEERS — If a completely dry January is too tough to imagine (though the Super Bowl is February 3rd this year…) then perhaps you are a good candidate to try the “no weekday” beers. This one follows a rhythm similar to my wife’s intermittent fasting regime, which I prescribe to as well, and requires some discipline but a great reward at the end. The no weekday beers include Friday night so you really only get to have beer on Saturday night. But this doesn’t mean that you binge on Saturday — you must remain moderate — but it does mean that you can have 2–3 beers while you watch the hockey game and feel good that you dialed back your consumption for the week.
NON-ALCOHOLIC BEERS — Possibly one of the easier ways to cut back on beer is by changing your “regular beer” to “near beer”. Last year the LCBO and Beer Store announced that they would be launching a bevy of non-alcoholic beers at their retail stores. Grocery and convenience stores have been selling non-alc beers since a 14 year old me bought one to look like a “bad-boy,” but our provincial beer purveyors had never stocked them. Over in Europe the tradition of drinking non-alc/low-alc beers is quite prevalent but in North America not many breweries have explored them and certainly not many craft brewers. There are some tasty brews from Becks and Grolsch but if you want to try something with a little bit of hoppiness, reach for a Partake IPA or Partake Pale Ale.