In my daily living, my habits are good. I eat my veggies. I exercise. I don't smoke. I manage my stress.
And yet, I was polishing off 4 or more cans of diet soda every day. I wrote about my Coke Zero Habit a year ago, a habit that I've only had for a few years.
After my morning workout, I would crave soda. Then midway through my morning clinic. Then midway through afternoon clinic. And then with dinner. And then if I went out at night, another Coke Zero or Diet Coke.
It was all getting to be a bit much.
There are many reasons to stay away from it. Diet soda may increase cardiovascular risk, it is acidic which is not good for the body or for an athlete who is training, it has no nutritional benefits, it can leech the bones of calcium, it deceives the body into thinking that it wants to eat more calories than it should, and as someone who has an annoying condition called interstitial cystitis it irritates the bladder and increases frequency of urination.
I thought back to seven years ago when I went vegan. My last holdout was my love of chocolate brownies. Once I realized how silly that was, I ditched dairy and eggs and never went back. (In the meantime, I have perfected my own decadent vegan chocolate brownie recipe.)
On New Years Day, I decided to do it, to give up diet soda.
That first day was tough! I came home from a morning bike ride, and I wanted that black can!!! I loved the fizz, the taste, the way it gave me energy. All I could do to keep craving that can was to leave the house and go to yoga class.
And somehow, after yoga, I felt calm. I didn't need the soda.
The next few days were tough. I went back to work on January 3, and instead of my soda can, I brought a small thermos of mango tea. That actually got me through my morning fine.
And on January 4th, there was one can left in my refrigerator. I posted this picture on my Facebook page, with the caption, "Honey I miss you xoxoxo".
And here we are, on January 15. No diet sodas for me since the new year. And I feel good. No more ups and downs in my energy level. I don't have to use the restroom as often since I'm drinking less caffeine.
I think I've kicked the habit for good. And I think I can stick with my no-soda lifestyle.