I'm certainly not Catholic, and Joel hasn't considered himself Catholic in about 7 years, but for some reason, we still participate in Lent, at least partially. I was raised Baptist so I don't really understand the whole Lent/Easter thing that Catholics do. I suppose I could research it, but since I'm not Catholic I don't really see the point.
Joel did not go to Ash Wednesday, and hasn't for years. He eats meat on Friday, and he doesn't do all the ritualistic Catholic things. But, we've always given something up for Lent. I think for me, it's the whole Jesus sacrifice thing, and I can definitely get on board with that part. I understand that many religions sacrifice something for the 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. It honors Jesus and what he sacrificed and did in his 40 days before he was the ultimate sacrifice. I think that's why we partake in Lent, because it crosses any religious boundaries. It's a sacrifice.
This year, I gave up soda. I've tried to do it in the past, but it hasn't worked out very well. I will admit, part of the reason I chose to give up pop was because I knew that it would also be beneficial for me health, and if I had a goal, like 40 days, I could probably go longer than that. It's easier to set short term goals first and then just keep extending that goal. There's no way I could just give up pop one random day and never go back to it. But, if I can do it for 40 days, maybe I can do it for 60 days, then 90 days, and so on.
Plus, it's good for the waistline, it's better on the budget, and there are plenty of other options out there that aren't sugar + sugar + water. We'll see. So far so good though. The first couple days were the hardest when I am so used to grabbing a pepsi at noon to eat with lunch and an occasional Mountain Dew to tide me over in the afternoon. It's been a week though and the longing for one has subsided.