Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Coffee Without Sugar


Recently, mainly on the advice of a very special friend, I have decided to slowly eliminate sugar from my diet. After 7 months on my arse watching TV shows I have what could politely be described as a soggy midsection, and need to get back to the washboard of a year or so back.

My friend's advice is that once you cut out sugar, you notice the real taste of foods that you would normally drown in sweet overkill. So candy, chocolate and popcorn are no-no's. Also all yogurt bar Greek. Slowly I've been turning away from saccharine heaven and letting my taste buds adjust to the actual flavour of my favourite foods

It hasn't been easy.

I knew cold turkey was a bad idea, so instead I decided to gently wean myself away from the euphoria of Demerera. The biggest pleasure involving sugar that I had was a cup of coffee with three teaspoons

Now I'm not talking about Nescafe. I'm talking specially purchased beans from a friend's cafe just over the road. Concocted in Belgium and shipped over here, these beans are to die for. I have my own coffee grinder and every morning, plus once in the afternoon I will lovingly place two shovel fulls in the mouth of the machine and then hand grind them into grains. Then I'll get out the caffetiere and wait the requisite three minutes before gently activating the plunger.

I'd then put in three brown sugars and gently sip at my mug while checking emails or watching a TV show.


Getting used to the taste of coffee on its own has proved a challenge. Coffee without three sugars, has quite frankly been utterly minging for about a week. Now however I'm used to it and can enjoy the flavours much more as my protesting tongue has settled into a routine and my pleasure glands no longer crave the brown stuff.

Sometimes you need to change in order to accept something new.

Tonight at Krav I was partnered with a guy who has excellent footwork. A few minutes into punching practice and he asked me with a chuckle "Do you always do that thing with your foot before you punch?" It was only then that I realised why people who can fight well tend to see my movements before I throw them. I am advertising the fact. Before a jab I would stutter forward with my left foot. In 5 years I'd never realised this. My partner also pointed out that my face gave away that I was about to attack, as did my shoulders when it came to telegraphing punches or elbow strikes. Crucially I would drop my arm in order to sweep in with a hook punch, and on top of that, didn't move my hip to emphasise the punch. That plus my fighting stance (left leg too far forward so it could be swept away).

I tried to not do these things and, like sugar in coffee, it proved to be a bit of an arse ache. I would still do them, as sub consciously my body thought the movements were "normal". So I reduced the sugar from three to two, not three to zero. I concentrated o the footwork and focussed on not moving my feet as I threw punches. As the class progressed I could feel some improvement in these mistakes but know that it will take a lot of practice to get this knocked into shape.

I needed to retrain my taste buds to like coffee without sugar.

I need to unlearn in order to get better.

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