I'm pretty good about keeping New Year’s resolutions. Whether it’s writing a book or two, shaking up the exercise routine, doing things that make me a better husband or father, I can usually look back at the year and see that I’ve accomplished most of them.
There is one exception to this rule—one that I've tried for the last three years with varying degrees of success: no more soda pop. As hard of I've tried, I’ve never been able to go an entire year without it. The longest I’ve made it without any bubbly was three years ago when I went all the way to September.
Since I don’t drink a lot of soda anyway, you’d think this would be an easy one to keep. The only time I usually drink it when we go out to eat (an Apollo Burger isn’t an Apollo Burger without some carbonation) or the occasionally family party. And avoiding carbonation during those times wouldn’t be difficult since there are always plenty of non-carbonated options to choose from.
Part of problem is that nearly a decade ago when I started running every day is that if I met my running goals for the week, one of my rewards was a 32 oz. fountain drink from a nearby convenience store. Even though drinking soda was went somewhat against the grain of the weight I was trying to lose at the time, it was still my reminder that I wasn’t giving up soda—but only drinking it after I had accomplished other health related goals. Nearly a decade later, I still routinely meet my fitness goals. However, I still want a reward for doing it. Hence the draw of at least having something carbonated to drink once a week. I’ve tried non-carbonated substitutes but so far nothing seems to work well enough to keep me off carbonation for 365 days.
It’s also become more difficult now that our kids are older. When Marathon Girl and I were first married, we never bought it. Now we buy it occasionally for the kids—usually as a reward for good behavior. This, however, creates temptations when we have it occasionally with dinner even though there’s plenty of other stuff I could drink. In the end, however, I have no one but myself to blame.
There are always other options available—I just choose to have the occasional soda. So this year I’m going to give it one last try and see if I can have the self control to abstain for at least a year. Hopefully by this time next year I’ll have good news to report.