Goodbye Coke (Again)

Practice Bikram long enough, and eventually you will start to adjust your diet without anyone telling you. It’ll be something you just want to do because you know it’ll make your life and your practice better. For me, the time has come to ditch the soda – for real this time.  I am kicking my coca-cola habit. I tried to get it jump started before, but then I got all anxious about the competition and bottomed out a bit. I didn’t do too bad. It didn’t get any worse, but it also didn’t get any better. Now that the competition is over, I feel like I have the brain space to do this.

I started off by laying a few ground rules. First, at the moment, I get to drink two cokes a day. One coke is 16.9 oz so about 34 oz of coke a day. When I’m eating out (which is honestly once a week at best) I am allowed to have a coke, and it doesn’t count.  Why? My goal here is to first get rid of the coke within my house. I’m not going to worry about the cokes I drink when I eat out or go to a party or something like that. This is hard. I have to set some realistic boundaries.

I figured I would make it through the first week and then lessen the amount of coke I drank at home each week until I got down to zero. I promptly proceeded to modify my rules on day four (today is day six if you’re curious). Days 1-3 were fine. I drank my two cokes each day. I didn’t have any major cravings or freak outs. Then day four hit. My two cokes were gone by 1:00 (maybe noon – and I was gone for class from 8:00-11:00! What does that tell you?). I desparately wanted another one. So I did a re-evaluation of my coke program and concluded I could have another one.

Here’s what I figured out:

I’m used to drinking three 16.9 oz cokes a week or 21 cokes a week. By reducing my intake to two a day, I’d cut out 1/3 right from the start. Maybe that was too much. Maybe I had overshot a bit. No biggie. I decided I could refine my plan and reduce by one bottle a week. So for week one, instead of having 21 bottles of coke I would have 20. Easy. I made a chart that showed how many bottles of coke I had each day. For days 1-5, I have consumed 11 so I am way under my goal. In fact, I told Mark that if I had two cokes today (Day 6), that would put my total at 13 meaning I could have seven cokes on Wednesday.

Just kidding. Although it does sound like a nice reward.

Seriously though, I am treating this like I did when I made the switch over to being a vegetarian. I’m setting a realistic goal – although for the cokes it’s weekly and not monthly -and then adjusting at the end of each week. I think once I decided I could have 20 cokes this week – instead of 21 – I relaxed into it a bit because I knew I could accomplish that. I’ll see what I hit when I go to bed on Wednesday and then readjust my goal for the upcoming week.

No caffiene headaches yet, but I do know one thing. I will miss my coke. But the time has come. It has to go.



7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Simmm
    Nov 13, 2012 @ 08:48:10

    Good job so far. You can do it!!


  2. leela
    Nov 13, 2012 @ 23:44:05

    Do you drink tea? When you are having a craving for Coke just go for some hot green tea ( make sure it is organic, decaf and do not add sugar). It will kill your cravings and it is very good for you. You could also do some miso soup (make sure you get organic and NO MSG). Other ways to help rid addiction are juicing and fasting. I know you are trying to pace yourself but why not simply quit. Cold turkey as they say. You are strong enough so just accept the pain of it for a week like you do with your yoga for 90 minutes and get it over with. A week of suffering or a life time of addiction? Your choice. Because really there is no time to waste. 20 Cokes a week that is NUTS!! *The active ingredient in Coke is phosphoric acid. Its Ph is 2.8. It will dissolve a nail in about 4 days. Just imagine what that is doing to your insides.
    *From this website


  3. loribruner
    Nov 15, 2012 @ 12:05:25

    Hi Leigh! I’m happy to chat with you about this! I was a HUGE pop-drinker for many, many years, and drank at least as much pop as you (about a 2-liter per day). I quit drinking pop completely in September, and haven’t had ANY caffeine at all in over 2 months. It has made a huge difference in my life and my yoga practice. I tapered off my pop-consumption slowly – but actually did it backwards from you; I started by cutting it out of my day outside of the house, and then started to work on cutting it out from inside my home. I do NOT recommend quitting cold turkey. Let’s chat! 🙂


  4. leighahall
    Nov 15, 2012 @ 14:16:57

    Thanks for the recommensations and support. Lori, let’s chat!


  5. Leela
    Nov 15, 2012 @ 15:45:41

    Let me just say I totally understand why you don’t recommend quitting “cold turkey” for most people Lori. However, Leigh is strong enough to do it because she regularly tortures herself and I really believe she probably has the endurance and pain tolerance (from what i have read) to just give it up if she really chooses to. Leigh, it did not work for you last time when you tried to wean off slowly so why not give another route a shot. I might have come across as harsh before, but that is only because I am also someone who practices Bikram EVERY day. So, I know what you have to be capable of mentally to do that and my harshness was only driven by that understanding. I think the real issue here is mental, not physical and if you are honest with yourself you will realize that the only thing that is stopping you from giving it up is that you have not truly made the decision to do so. So make it happen girl! Change your mind right now and give that junk up! You can, you are a strong yogi! If you are “bullet proof” then you are coke proof too.


  6. leighahall
    Nov 16, 2012 @ 07:24:59

    Leela, thanks for your input. I think the issue with giving up coke is both mental and physical. I am slowly getting a handle on the mental part. The physical part is what it is. Today the physical aspect is pretty good (so far). The weening off approach didn’t work last time because I got too caught up in the competition. It probably wasn’t the best idea to launch a leave from coke right as the competition was approaching so I dropped it and returned to it afterwards. For now, I’m doing it slowly and so far so good. I do appreciate your support.


  7. Trackback: Still Kicking the Coke « My Bikram Yoga Life

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