The other day I had to face that my 8-cups of coffee a day addiction was getting in the way of my losing weight. Although coffee in the afternoon tended to mean I wasn’t snacking, I did hit the evening and start binge eating in search of a pick-me-up. I liked the buzz and my thoughts were clearer after I had coffee. I got a lot done in the afternoon while running on caffeine.
However, I would crash after dinner, exhausted to the point that I couldn’t handle more than flipping through a magazine. Then, around two in the morning I would wake up and I’d be awake (as in, brain running at full gallop). By the time I fell back to sleep my fiancé’s alarm clock would be going off at 5 a.m. and the cat would start demanding breakfast.
I’d crawl out of bed and down the 4-cup carafe on my coffee maker.
The other day, I realized that I had pushed my body into a constant state of fight-or-flight. I read up a bit on caffeine addiction and I had to admit that I’d dug myself into a hole. I’d drink caffeine because I was tired but when the caffeine-based adrenaline buzz petered out, I’d be exhausted so I’d drink more caffeine, which led to a caffeine-based adrenaline buzz…well, you get the idea.
Compulsive Eating and Caffeine
I eliminated my afternoon caffeine and by three in the afternoon I couldn’t move. It took me two hours to write one hundred words, so I gave up trying to think. I popped in a movie and surrounded myself with food magazines that I’d been meaning to go through to pull out the recipes I was interested in. I found this task exhausting, so I had some fruit.
That didn’t pick me up, so I had something else to eat, and something else, and something else. I was exhausted and so full I felt ill. The next day wasn’t much better. I drank coffee in the morning but it wasn’t enough. I staggered through my day’s tasks. Or, I should say I made certain that everyone was fed. I read one email from a friend five times and it still didn’t make sense.
My entire being felt like it was screaming “Wall! Hit the wall!” I’m doing some big-time compulsive eating and I’m too tired to care. (I’m finishing writing this a few days after this knock-down exhaustion). I feel horrible and cranky. Some is probably from cutting my caffeine intake in half and some is emotional because I’m frustrated that nothing is getting done.
I’m too tired to worry about what I’m eating but at the same time I’m irritated that I’m allowing myself to go on an emotional eating binge. I’m dragging and I’m eating and I’m annoyed and I’m sitting on the couch staring at the same paragraph in a book for an hour. I long for that caffeine high.