Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Habits shmabits

So, since starting the whole no sugar/caffeine thing, I've come to appreciate the power of habits. One morning recently, en route to an all day women's health symposium, I found my self in a supremely cruddy mood. I had needed to get up earlier than usual to get to the symposium on time and had not slept well the night prior. As I quietly grumbled my way through registration, it was mentioned to me that there was breakfast in the side room. Running on an auto pilot function I didn't know existed, I went in and got (free) starbucks coffee before heading into the first session on cervical cancer (geek out break- it was an awesome session). As I started to wake up and become more aware of my surroundings, I took a sip from my cup and had a 'WHOA, where did this come from?!' moment. Now I have to say here that I was aware that I was getting coffee. What really caught my attention was how completely unphased I was by the habit. To be fair, I think part of it was how early it was (who starts symposiums at 7:15 in the AM? Medical providers it seems...jeez...) but truly, it was just so automatic.

Another part of the habit is the flavour familiarity. Coffee goes well with certain things, and one of these things for me are my fiancee's kick ass multigrain cranberry chocolate Sunday morning pancakes. Unlike the auto pilot coffee incident, this moment, this past Sunday, was totally a conscious choice. Hanging out on a Sunday morning in PJs and pancakes really felt like it needed a cuppa joe too. And it was awesome.

Looking back on both those days, I remember feeling a little wonky throughout the day, and now wonder if I am more sensitive to caffeine than I realized.

Clearly, I enjoy the habit of the drink, but if I am still wanting to have less caffeine in my life, maybe I can try decaf. Granted, there is some caffeine in there as well, but significantly less than regular coffee. I will say that since starting this, I have been drinking more tea, which pleases me greatly.

I recently found out that my soon to be brother in law quit caffeine the same day I did, so I am re-inspired to try again.

Sugar has been trickier than I expected. It's everywhere! While I am not going around seeking out pastries, I do appreciate a little dark chocolate every once in a while. I feel like this habit kicks in hard the more I try to restrict it. It could be that this is just my body trying to fight through a subtle yet clearly present sugar addiction. Or the whole 'everything in moderation' thing should really apply here. I'll have to play with one a little more to find a balance that works for me.

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