Wednesday, June 13, 2012

My name is Marlow and I’m a caffeine addict

Alright friends. I need your help. I have BIG problem.

Well, not a big problem BUT it seems pretty big to me. You see, I am on a caffeinated roller coaster and I don’t know how to get off.

We all know I’ve been stressed with school, being that I’m taking over the allowed load of classes and summer school is cray-cray fast anyway. (Yes, cray-cray.)

So I’ve been doing what I knew I would do…


I’m in a vicious cycle of caffeine ups and downs. Here’s my current routine:

- I wake up at 6am; I’m drinking unsweet tea by 6:45

- 8am I have my first cup of coffee

- 11am I have my second cup of coffee

- 12:30 I have a tea of some sort

From there I usually quit but sometimes in the afternoon I have another coffee at 3pm if I have a lot of writing to do.

But the thing about all this caffeine is that I’m still tired.I never feel like this:


I am DOG tired from 8am to 10am, pretty tired from 10am to 12noon, and just sleepy from 12noon until 3pm. At 3 I get so tired that I want to take a nap BUT taking a nap makes me feel like garbage so I fight it off and hopefully get a second wind around 6pm. I usually exercise between 6 and 7, so I have enough energy to get me through to 10-10:30,

I know something has to change but I can’t see my way out of this mess. On the one hand this session is over next week and my next summer session doesn’t have a 8am class.

BUT my fall semester is AWFUL. I’m not even going to talk about it. So I have to figure this out quick.

I feel like I’m probably not drinking enough water and I know that I’m going to have a minimum level of sleepiness that comes with being sad from separation. But this is too much.


How do you manage caffeine? Should I quit it entirely? Anyone tried mate?


Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if I am really qualified to comment, as I have a bit of a caffeine problem myself ;) that said, I did go to graduate school, so I have some experience. The biggest one is to switch at least some of that tea to green tea - still has some caffeine, but not as much - maybe for everything except your early morning cup and a couple cups of coffee? Second, drink lots of water. Third - its really not a huge deal, in the grand scheme of things, if you need a lot of caffeine to function well for this short, stressful time period in the overall balance of your life. It'll be ok either way :) but seriously - green tea works wonders. Good luck!!

Homebound said...

Get off the caffeine. Cut your dose in half every day until you are off it.

I wonder if the roller coaster is grains? I am on a primal diet and not having the roller coaster of energy through the day.

Also, try magnesium before bed. Maybe you are not getting enough good sleep.

Denise said...

I'm stuck in the caffeine fatigue cycle too. I don't remember ever feeling this tired - all the time. And I blame it on the new-ish caffeine addiction. My plan is to drink my coffee until Summer Solstice and then stop. No Caffeine in summer! (I'll revisit the concept in Fall when the cool weather drives me to the coffee shop)

I'm in love with peppermint suntea. Completely herbal, completely unsweetened, completely caffeine free. Completely hydrating. Completely refreshing. So now that the sun is out in the Pacific NW, I'm about to make the switch. ( i just need 1 more week of the coffee addiction...)

Good Luck! Even if you dose with coffee, you'll be okay. You'll make it through. Don't be too hard on yourself. Look at all you've accomplished so far, both with school and with healthy eating!

Anonymous said...

I have found that sometimes it isn't about the caffeine, it seems to be about the routine or the emotions that draws me to coffee. So for example, I found that when I went to get another cup of coffee at 10 am, it wasn't necessarily because I needed another energy boost, it was because my body craved that walk away from my desk at work. So instead, I replaced that trip for coffee with walking a lap around my office building to get a breath of fresh air. Think about whether you could replace that coffee craving with another activity that still gives you some relief. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Caffeine -- be it coffee or tea -- is very dehydrating because they are both diuretics. For me, I think the fatigue is dehyradation related. Coffee is more addicting for me than tea, and I find that coffee and sugar together make me crave more of both. So if I avoid coffee, I'm not likely to want sugar, and vice versa. For me, the only thing has been to quit coffee cold turkey, quit sugar cold turkey and drink lots of water. It takes a few days to get rehydrated, but then I'm not so tired.

Zach said...

I have a friend who was getting her PhD go off caffeine for awhile and although it was rough at first, she was more energized, could think clearer and was better focused. More sleep and water would help too! I hope you're doing well!

Unknown said...

I am a former Diet Coke addict and used to guzzle caffeine constantly, to the point where I didn't notice a difference (like you!). I went through a detox, cutting back slowly and drinking lots of water. Interestingly enough I became way more alert than when I was caffeinating all the time - I think it's because I started sleeping a lot better(remember caffeine has a really long half life, something like 6 hrs). So my suggestion is to start by cutting out the afternoon caffeine first and see if it helps you sleep instead of posting on your blog at 3AM :-)

Donna said...

I became sensitive to coffee and couldn't stomach it for a time. I switched to Trader Joe's Organic Spiced Rooibos Ruby Red Chai Tea. It is herbal and has more body that a lot of teas - more like coffee. It doesn't need sugar and is satisfying as a substitute. I like a break with a hot beverage.

Slimming Su said...

Hi April. So proud of you! I had to cut caffeine because it made me glittery and dehydrated. Drinking more water just meant more trips to the potty. Then I discovered genseng. Makes me feel energetic without the glitters, dehydration and problems sleeping. Hang in there! Lots of love, Auntie