Editor’s note: This post is part of our Pulling the Plug series!
I do not “like” water. It’s not very fun. But Diet Coke – yum! Diet Dr. Pepper – come to mama! I even like Diet Mountain Dew, which now that I look back on it, is pretty foul. But I used to happily Do the Dew! I drank diet soda like it was water. And sometimes it was all I drank. For the whole day. Terribly healthy, I know. Somehow I used to justify it by the fact that I don’t drink coffee so soda was my sole source of caffeine. Whatever it takes to get you through the day, right?
I don’t want to go so far as to say I have an addictive personality but I am sort of an “all or nothing” kind of girl. I don’t want one Oreo, I want 10. One margarita? No thanks, how about three? That’s how I was with my diet soda – and man oh man, was I all in!!! When we drove by a McDonald’s, my oldest asked, “Mommy, are you going to get a Diet Coke?” I knew this was a fairly large problem.
My father-in-law died on Dec. 20 this past year. It makes you think about life. It makes you think about how you’re treating your body. I decided that all my fat-free, no-calorie, no-sugar food basically equaled a chemical shitstorm. Enemy #1? Diet Soda. It had to go.
I had my last Diet Coke on Dec. 26, 2013. The first few days, well weeks, were rough. Probably rougher than I ever let my husband or friends know. I had a dull and constant headache. I was irritable, but honestly I’m not sure if anyone really noticed much of a difference there. I don’t love water, so getting used to drinking it exclusively was tough. I did start drinking iced tea, but then there was the issue of sweetener, aka chemical shitstorm. If I was going to use sweetener, I might as well drink Diet Coke. So, over the past couple months I have embraced water and plain iced tea. They are my new BFFs.
It’s still weird for me to go to restaurants where I used to have two or three Diet Coke refills during the course of a meal. Like water, I tell you. I don’t keep it in the house now, so there is no temptation. But for me – Mrs. All or Nothing – it’s really easier if I am not around it so restaurants are a challenge. But now I enjoy my tea or water. Lifestyle change, plain and simple.
I did have some 7-Up during a bout with a stomach bug last month, but it was the real, high-octane stuff. My personal trainer (oh yeah, joined a gym and got a trainer… but that’s for another blog post!) agrees that if you’re going to drink a soda, drink the stuff with sugar. It was very counter-intuitive for me and I didn’t even enjoy it. Frankly, it was the only thing I could keep down so I drank it.
Breaking up with diet soda was the first step in a big lifestyle change for me. I basically decided that 2014 is the year I am going to CTRL-ALT-DEL and reboot the things in my life I don’t like. I’m going to treat my body better because I want to be around for a VERY long time for my munchkins. Before it was always about dieting, but now it’s about being strong and healthy.
If you think breaking up with diet soda was rough, maybe I’ll tell you about my personal trainer and her fat pincher… maybe… .
Have you ever been motivated to let something go that was not good for you? What did you Pull the Plug on? Let us know!