I used to feel like a criminal in the morning as my husband collected the evidence of countless cookie crumbs in our sheets. Flash back to the night before. I’m sitting in bed reading a Deepak Chopra book, (with Desperate Housewives on in the background – yes, cheesy tv shows are another bad habit of mine) with a stash of my addiction beside me. Crumbling chocolate chip cookies (yes, they were gluten-free) and a big bar of 73% dark chocolate. You don’t believe me? I swear it’s true. I eat my way through them before my husband gets to bed and I innocently fall asleep, thinking I had gotten away with my sugar fix. Then the guilt comes the next morning as I awake amongst a bed of crumbs and remorse, grimacing as my husband is poking fun of me.
Yes, everyone, my name is Hayley Hobson and I was once a sugar junkie.
The sugar fixes were giving me short sweet highs, but then kicking me into a slump a few hours later or worse, waking me up several times during the night. Then, to climb out of that slump, I ate some more sugar, or as I used to say, wish I could put an IV drip of caffeine in my arm. As you may be able to pick up so far, this process was not working. I thought I was getting away with it since I was lean and running a lot but little did I know, I was spiraling into an endless sugary cycle. With my sweet tooth raging out of control, I knew it was time to lay down the needle (aka the boxes of cookies, coconut milk ice cream and Choc-o-love bars) and pick up the greens.
I had to go cold turkey.
As a yoga and Pilates instructor, I need my body to be feeling flexible, supple and strong. With my obsession of eating Jelly Bellies, red licorice and Tootsie Rolls, it wasn’t happening. I kept feeling sluggish and blah until I ate another Starburst. It was time for a change (ex-sugar junkies unite!)—for my career’s sake, my family’s sake, and of course for my own sake.
First step, get OFF the caffeine. Next step, fill every plate with live food (lots of greens), complex carbohydrates, good fats and a complete protein. Finally, eat regularly.
More on the greens—sugar’s arch-enemy. I knew if I was going to put down that addiction with a Pilates body slam, greens were the way to go. I started by going to the farmer’s market and picking out nice dark green veggies like spinach, kale and chard. It’s an easy way to start and so rich of the nutrients our bodies crave. Then it’s important to make healthy meals at home rather than dining out—it allows you to understand what you’re eating because you are buying it and you are cooking it. I was feeling better almost immediately. I started juicing, making a ton of green smoothies and was eating a large array of vegetables ranging from fresh bok choy to mouth-watering avocados—life was getting gooood (and that’s saying a lot coming from an ex-sugar junkie!).