Caff-feind Confession

Here’s the problem: I am undergoing a major nutritional shift for the month of July.  Maybe you would call this a diet? Tomato/to-mah-to.  There’s a “cleanse” aspect to it, but not a cayenne-lemon-water cleanse, mostly because I refuse to wear a diaper.  It’s been brought to my attention (by an evil, hateful acquaintance) that you’re not supposed to have caffeine if you are doing any sort of cleanse.  Can this be true?  Can any human be expected to abstain from caffeine for longer than the time it takes a pot to brew (and isn’t that what Coca-cola is for?)? 

Before we can fully debate on the merits of I Should, I Shouldn’t, and I Should But Won’t, let’s limit the scope of the issue by delineating what the nutritional shift is NOT about:

  • Nutrition
  • Athletic Performance

Given these, please hold all arguments that include statistics on either side about the effect of caffeine from a nutritional standpoint.  Also hold arguments about the effect of caffeine on sports performance.  If drinking caffeine makes you faster, and I can’t get any slower, fasting from caffeine will have a net-zero effect on me, so let’s just end that part of it there.

I suppose it could be useful to know what the Nutritional Shift IS about, and that’s simple:

  •   A Boy

It’s about a Julia Roberts Pretty Woman red dress moment the instant my favorite non-blob and I are reunited after a nine-month deployment.  Note the use of “moment.”  This is not a life choice.  Regardless of whether we decide I Should, I Shouldn’t, or I Should but I Won’t, this will all be a distant memory by the time we reach the return of my favorite non-blob plus twelve hours.  So please also hold any arguments centered on sustainability.

BTB Caff Press

When I set up the Nutritional Shift for the month of July, I anticipated kicking caffeine for that month.  But as I started to contemplate that more fully, and as my friends went through Resolution Fasts in January, I became acutely aware of the need to take a serious look at the caffeine issue.  IF my habit is incompatible with a cleansing Nutritional Shift, (and IF I decide to care about that fact), the worst possible thing for planet Earth would be for me to kick caffeine AND every other reason for living (queso, wings, donuts, queso, beer, and wings) simultaneously.

So, in January, I hatched a plan.  I would wean off caffeine over time, which at that point I had plenty of.  It would be so controlled, so gradual, that I would hardly notice, and in July I probably wouldn’t even miss it.  Here’s how it looked:


Filter-brewed coffee only, but still as much as you want.
Downgrade from Octane 91 to Octane 90.


Still drink as much as you want, so you don’t feel deprived.
Downgrade from Octane 90 to Octane 87.


DECAFDrink as much as you want because, really, who cares?

Downgrade from Octane 87 to Canola Oil for Prius.


NO CAFFEINE WHATSOEVER.This includes tea and soda.

Downgrade from Canola Oil for Prius to Cross Country Big Wheel Bicycle.

(Remember: “Sucks.”)

You’ll notice that the plan officially started on Monday.  MONDAY.  Like I was going to change ANYthing about my coffee intake on a Monday morning.  That was just poor planning.  I actually spent the entire morning doing the opposite of downgrading my caffeine intake by studying and sucking down espresso at a Starbucks.  “Mañana,” I thought.  It’s two days later and every time I think I’ll just go back to the ol’ office urn, I think:

BTB Caf Mug


I SHOULD start the weaning program post haste; or

I SHOULDN’T bother with it


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