Well, 2013 is almost over. 2014 is getting ready to launch. It’s been a great year for me and I really didn’t expect it to turn out the way it did.
My New Years resolution was the same as always. To finally quit smoking. After 20 years, I knew I needed to but I just couldn’t do it. I’d tried everything over the years. The patch, the pill, the gum, cold turkey. I even switched over to chewing tobacco for a bit in some twisted logic. My thinking was that if I could go without smoking cigs, then the chew would be no problem. Wrong. There’s quite a few reasons I was never successful and they all pretty much boiled down to the Army. Most people smoke in the army and that alone makes it difficult. A cigarette was also a fantastic stress reliever and it’s not like the military is stress free. We drank a lot in the army and you can’t go out without a full pack of smokes. And ya know what, I just didn’t want to quit. I enjoyed smoking. He was my little friend. He never let me down. He never made me sad. He was always there for me. He was there in the good times, and he was the first I turned to in the bad times. He made me feel better no matter what. I have a lot of memories and Joe Camel was alway right there in the middle of em. He was my right hand man, my best friend and confidant.
So New Year’s Eve, I thought ok I’ll give it another go. At 11:55 pm I had my last smoke, broke the rest of the pack and chucked it in bin.
Day 1, sure wouldn’t mind a cigarette with my morning coffee. Nope. Don’t do it. Oh I don’t have any anyways. I can do this. Day 1 over. Easy enough. I’ve gone a day without smoking before. I got this.
Day 2, yea I’m not sure if I can do this. Yes you can, Aaron. Stop being weak.
Day 3, I can’t handle this. GIVE ME A CIGARETTE!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhh that’s goooood. What was I thinking, trying to quit. Wait, STOP! What the hell are you doing? Why did you that? I don’t know… I’m weak.
Day 4 and 5, I can’t think, I can’t see straight, I’m shaking, sweating and I feel sick. Is this what it feel like to kick heroin? Sure feels like it. It will pass.
Day 6 and 7, I feel better. I’ve gotten over the hump. It’s been a week. Next milestone, 1month.
1month, I’ve done it!!!
Now it’s been almost a year and I am extremely proud to say that I am smoke free. It was by far one of the best decisions I have ever made. I’ve never felt better. Now, I have to repair the damage done.
2013 for me was a year of getting healthy. Quit smoking, start exercising, and start eating healthier.
My diet really started to change when I found out how Aspartame (the sweetener) is made. I started watching documentaries and YouTube videos on the origin and production of our food. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Right, time to go organic.
Now, the more I read about how much can be fixed just by eating fruits and veg. I’m rather amazed.Our bodies have the power to heal themselves, you just need to give them the right tools and optimal environment in which to do so.
I did my first Tough Mudder in April. I knew I was hooked as soon as I put that orange headband on. What a feeling. I made the very easy decision that I was going to be getting a season pass and doing at least 2 or 3 next year. I just needed to train a lot more.
In July, I started a new job with a great new company. I joined the Loss Prevention team for Urban Outfitters Europe. Im really excited for the future with this company. It’s growing and growing and I plan to grow with it.
Now, let’s get to what brought me into your lives. My decision to undertake what will probably be the hardest challenge of my life. In October, I decided to attempt all 16 Tough Mudder UK events.
I have 2 reasons for doing this. First and foremost, is to raise as much money as I can for Help for Heroes charity. H4H is a wonderful charity who provide wounded soldiers with rehabilitation and prosthetics and opportunities outside of what the government does. As an ex-soldier myself, with 3 Iraq combat tours under my belt, it’s a cause that is very dear. I was lucky enough to not get injured, so I’ve decided to pretty much dedicate a year of my life to helping those who weren’t as lucky.
#2 is for me. It’s a personal challenge that I’ve set myself. Once I finally quit smoking, I realised, if I can do that then I can do anything.
But I couldn’t do this without the support of family and friends and complete strangers around the world. I’m humbled at the support I am receiving and look forward to seeing how much more support I can get. I especially couldn’t do this without the full support of my amazing wife. She has helped me in all areas from fundraising, to social media to motivation. She’s been wonderful.
I need everyone’s help now. I need you to spread the word to all your friends and family and followers. I need donations to roll in no matter how big or small. Every little bit helps. You can donate at www.bmycharity.com/aaronsmudder
My twitter profile is @aaronsmudder and my Facebook page is Aaron’s Tough Mudder
I hope your year was good and I wish you all a very prosperous 2014. Thanks for reading my little story.