Well its official. The last day of Lent is today and as you may recall, I gave up coffee, well, caffeinated coffee which, for someone like me who doesn’t use a teaspoon, but a dessert spoon when spooning coffee into her mug, it was a big deal.
But I love a challenge, as you know, and to be honest, I thought it would be relatively easy.
HAHAHAHAHAHA! Oh how you must have all laughed.
It wasn’t easy. It really wasn’t easy at all, and a week into the challenge, I regretted my decision and thought, ‘Why didn’t I offer to give up cheese instead?’ No, hang on, that’s even more ridiculous. ‘Broccoli. Why didn’t I offer to give up broccoli?’
Because it was meant to be difficult, that was the whole point.
So how was it? Honestly? Pretty awful. That first week especially. I thought I may get a headache – I had several. I thought I may be a bit tired – I was so tired I could barely get to the gym, and when I did, I had little energy to do anything. In fact, during that first week, I had several afternoon Nana naps, which is no bad thing, but it was proof I really was flagging. In fact, I was so tired on Day 6, I gave in and had a small, teeny tiny, smidgen of caffeine. But we won’t talk about that.
WHOA! NOSTRIL CLOSE-UP!
I DID NOT WANT TO BY AT THE GYM THIS DAY!
Dexter would argue that I was particularly snappy but WHAT DOES HE KNOW!? (He may have had a point), and although I did switch to decaffeinated coffee, goodness me, it really wasn’t the same. I did some research amongst my Facebook followers about the best de-caffeinated coffee to drink, but I just couldn’t bring myself to fork out money (I didn’t have) on something (I didn’t really want.) But I did buy these – the coffee wasn’t so bad, but the tea still remains untouched.
So, apart from the occasional de-caffeinated Costa coffee whilst out on a bike ride, I mostly drank sugar-free squash and water.
But the one thing I asked myself throughout this experiment was, ‘Is caffeine really that bad for you? For me?’ I spoke to friends who had given it up before and they said they felt less anxious, less jittery, but I like the ‘buzz’ caffeine gives me. I would say I drink 3-4 cups a day, so I’m not OTT about it, but it does wake me up in the morning, and keeps me going all day, and I really, really missed it.
Did I get used to not drinking it? Yes. Would I go back to drinking ‘proper’ coffee? YES.
I liked the idea of giving something up for Lent, I’ve never done it before, and I may consider doing it again next year because I don’t like the feeling that I’m addicted to anything … apart from Halloumi cheese which, one would argue, is much worse for you, but I appreciated being given the opportunity to see if I could do something as challenging as this, and I (for the most part) succeeded.
Tomorrow, it’s the start of the Easter break for me and the first thing I’m going to do in the morning is ask my man-friend to make me the biggest, strongest, all-the-caffeine coffee and I’m going to enjoy every second of it, but for now, I’m going to sip on this ‘delicious’ sugar-free squash knowing that I accomplished something pretty epic. At least for me.
To learn more about Christian Aid and the ‘Giving it up for Lent’ campaign:
Link to the Christian Aid info page: http://bit.ly/2mBaIjm
Link to my ‘Just Giving’ page: http://bit.ly/2mY4I5b