At the beginning of November last year my sister gave us a challenge. She said “cut sugar”. What she meant was stop adding sugar to tea or coffee and stop eating sweets/ chocolates and no drinking soft drinks. The challenge was until Ironman 70.3 this January.
I decided that while I was about it I should maybe do a slight overhaul of my diet. Generally I felt that I ate quite healthily but my lunches needed some serious work. It was pure laziness and I would grab whatever was at hand. In my case that was white bread. There were some days when I was having up to 9 slices…. Yikes. My other problem was that if I was out of the office anywhere near lunch time I would get takeaways. I decided to cut those out too.
I found that it was actually the habits that where hardest and not the foods. The temptation to pick up that chocolate bar at the counter when doing your shopping (and eat it in the car on the way home). The temptation to go to the kitchen at work and butter a slice of bread (or 3). The temptation to just pop into KFC at lunch time if I was out – even if I had food in the fridge at work. I did however battle with the cutting sugar out of my tea of coffee and gradually started reducing the amount I added.
The results were nothing short of astonishing! In the 3 months I lost 8 kgs. Ok I was also training for a Half Ironman so upped my exercise dramatically – but I have done that before and never lost similar amounts of weight. I was pretty shocked. I thought my diet was pretty healthy to start with.
After January I gradually started adding the breads and the take-aways back into my diet. I generally don’t drink sodas so no problem there. And there was nothing gradual about the reintroduction of chocolate. I did however keep reducing my intake of sugar in the tea and coffee. It took me exactly 1 year to stop adding sugar – yes, I can now say that as of the 1st November 2012 I DON’T add sugar to tea or coffee. Over the year I started to put back on some of the weight – not all of it thankfully.
This November I have decided to do the challenge again. I need to plan better to ensure that I am not tempted to sneak into the kitchen to eat the bread – very tempting when somebody makes toast… I am a total sucker for white bread! But I am being strong. It is probably going to be easier this time as I don’t have as much to cut back – but the temptation is still there. I was out at lunch time and all I could think was…. Hmmmmm KFC! But I resisted! I have however decided not to cut chocolate all together – I am sticking to 2 blocks of dark chocolate – 85% (just as well I love it)
I wonder if it will have the same effects on my weight as last time? Although it is not the reason I am doing it. It will however be easier to get a lighter me up the hills in East London in January! I will keep you up dated.