I decided to quit sugar on 18 February 2018. Cold turkey. Excluding the first few months of my life, and the tiny dessert helping I had at a wedding a few weeks ago, this is officially the longest I have ever been without some form of pastry or chocolate.
Do I feel more energised? Hell No! I’m super stressed.
Do I feel awesome about this life choice? Nope. I crave chocolate every second of every day.
Why did I do it then?
Revisiting My Relationship With Sugar
I’ve always had a sweet tooth. In 2011, when I was the Shape Magazine fitness diarist of the year, my dietician even included a small portion of chocolate into my eating plan because my chocolate cravings were so strong.
But, due to the nature of my work, there are specific times of the year when I experience exceptionally high levels of stress, get very little sleep, experience the emotional rollercoaster of working on events, and have to be particularly resilient when it comes to dealing with internet trolls for more then 12 hours a day.
This is that time of year.
Until last year, the strains of my job would have me inhale multiple slabs of chocolate and litres of Coke every day. But a few incidents led to the tipping point where I realised that I would have to make sustainable changes to my lifestyle.
This would mean redefining my current relationship with food – and sugar in particular – and treat food as a source of nourishment and enjoyment, and not a tool to handle my stress.
It was time to face my addiction.
My Not Quite 12 Steps
- I had to face the facts that living on chocolate and Coke did not support a healthy lifestyle.
- I also had to admit that I have no willpower when it comes to sugar.
- I had to concede that the only way to break the cycle would be to stop eating sugar and refined carbs.
- While I’m not into the whole group support thing, I joined the Sleekgeek 8 Week Body Transformation Challenge to give myself a kick start, and officially monitor my progress.
- I started doing karate as a means to handle my stress levels.
- I entered the New York Marathon.
One Month In…
I read that it would take about 10 days of feeling absolutely dreadful before I would come to enjoy my newfound energy and awesomeness. One month in, I’m still not out of the “feeling dreadful” stage.
Physically, I’m alright. I don’t hit the afternoon slump any more, and I feel lighter in general. BUT the craving is still strong. Because I’m under tremendous negative stress at the moment, I crave chocolate and Coke ALL. THE. TIME. So it’s hard…
But there is a silver lining: I’ve already lost 7kg and 23.5cm. My karate Gi sits looser than the day I started, and people have started to comment that I look like I’ve lost some weight.
But there is still a long way to go…
Over the course of the next month, I need to have lost enough weight to allow me to start running again.
My couch to marathon programme has been printed out and laminated, and THAT journey will start on 2 April.
It stops here. And it starts here.