May 09, 2023

 Introducing Luc (@Marathon2Sobriety), a sober dad, husband, marathoner, and Alcohol-Free Life Coach.

Originally hailing from Toronto, Canada, he struggled with alcohol use disorder for over 15 years, falling prey to a work hard, play hard mentality that caused significant trouble. However, he persevered and has now been sober for 6.5 years.

His personal mission is to promote a growth mindset that challenges the idea that hard work and alcohol go hand in hand. As a running enthusiast, he champions alternative ways to enjoy life and achieve personal growth without alcohol. He believes in rewriting the stories we tell ourselves, inspiring others to embrace a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle to help people reach their full potential. Through his work, he is determined to help others realize that a life of sobriety is achievable for anyone who wants it bad enough.

1. What inspired you to start on the sober curious journey?

I knew deep down that I wasn’t functioning at my highest potential. I was very much a social binge drinker, someone with a lot of social anxiety. I was also concerned about how others viewed me and when I drank I felt more at ease, and more confident. I had created this character, the life of the party image that got me into trouble. I never knew what version would come out. It was a very inconsistent lifestyle and I was on a bad trajectory. Despite that I was able to keep my job and work in a great career in tech sales for a large global company. I hid it very well and always showed up to work on Monday. I gave excuses for it as I was still very high functioning. I was tired of feeling sorry for myself so I sought out therapy and got what I needed and started prioritizing myself. 6.5 years later, I haven’t had a drop of alcohol since and I know in my core I am the best version of myself. My greatest accomplishment is that I got sober before my daughter was born. She gives me all the inspiration to not drink for one more day. 

2. What trends are you seeing in the Non-Alcoholic category?

I am seeing more and more Alcohol Free options and it makes me very happy. I would be lost without my alcohol free drinks especially in social situations. I feel so much more at ease and confident with a tasty bubbly AF beer in hand. 

3. What makes a good non-alcoholic beverage/beer for you?

Something that is refreshing with authentic taste that is low in sugar and calories. 

4. What are some of the known health benefits of non-alcoholic beverages/beers?

There really are no down sides. There is nothing that I will regret doing or saying because I drank too many AF drinks. The best part is I can still feel like I am partaking in the fun and I can drive home afterwards and sleep in my own bed and wake up feeling refreshed. 

5. How do you find balance in your life? 

By focusing on self-care and maintaining a positive mindset, I am able to find balance in my life. Running has become a crucial component in achieving this balance. After two and a half years of sobriety, I discovered the benefits of long-distance running. It has helped me stay sharp both physically and mentally. I have qualified and ran the Boston Marathon in 2022 and am currently preparing for the Toronto Marathon on May 7th, as well as the Chicago Marathon in October 2023. As a runner, I feel that I am at my best, and it has become an integral part of my identity, along with my sobriety. I work very hard towards these goals and it isn’t about the times and the races. It’s about what it does to my mood, my patience and my attitude. I am my best as a sober runner and hope to be running for a long time.

6. What tools, resources, or role models can you recommend for someone who is sober curious?

It starts with staying close to your why. Reminding yourself why you are choosing to be sober curious. Refer to them often to keep on track. Finding a new passion for me has helped me tremendously. We need to find something else to fill that void. You will get so much time back so to be able to fill it with a passion or something that excites you is so important. Don’t be afraid to try new things either. I hated running growing up. When you put down that drink, you will undoubtedly discover more about yourself - what I call “self discovery” and “self actualization”. Lastly there are so many books, podcasts, and online resources available including sober IG to support you. Learn it. It’s a beautiful thing and nothing to be ashamed of. I was in the sober closet for 5 years. I was embarrassed about my sobriety, I thought it was a weakness and I never talked about it. I held so much shame and guilt. Since then I have come so far and I am very vocal about my recovery and sharing my lived experiences in hopes to inspire someone along the way that they too can make some lasting changes in their life. It’s never too late.

7. What would you like to see next from non-alcoholic beer brands?

I would like to see more partnerships with the athletic community. There is so much beer culture in sports, in particular running. It’s just as much fun drinking an AF beer after a race.

8. Tell us about what’s next for you?

I am hosting my first sober/sober curious event on May 13th in Toronto. This event is open to everyone no matter if they are already sober, sober curious or just interested in learning more about this topic. The goal of this event is to encourage open discussion around alcohol and to find alternative ways to enjoy and have fun without relying on alcohol. We believe that sobriety and more mindful drinking is a lifestyle choice that can lead to greater health, happiness, and well-being, and we want to create a space where people can come together to explore this topic.

During this event, we’ll have a panel discussion with 5 other thought leaders who will share their personal stories on all thing’s sobriety, health and wellness. Not every panelist is sober either and that is on purpose.

We have also hired a Canadian comedy award-nominated improv comedian Wayne Jones, who has toured with Colin Mochrie from “Whose Line Is It Anyways?” and performed across North America.

We will have food, alcohol free drinks, door prizes, swag bags and more.

We hope that this event will be a safe and supportive space for everyone, and that it will inspire those who are curious about sobriety to explore this path further. Our goal is to break down the stigma that is tied around sobriety and to show that it is a positive and fulfilling choice for anyone, regardless of their background or circumstances. More details about the event can be found here.

My plan is to be putting on many more events in the city to bring awareness and community together!

Thank you,

Luc Zoratto AKA @marathon2sobriety 

Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us, Luc!