I was addicted…seriously addicted to Diet Wild Cherry Pepsi. I drank it by the gallons, well actually by the 2 Liters. I knew it was terrible for me but I loved the sweet taste and needed the caffeine. I wanted to replace my diet soda and all the horrible chemicals with a new caffeinated drink. Coffee was the perfect choice, a “healthier” choice or at least the lesser of two evils. But I had one big problem. I hated coffee….seriously hated coffee. I couldn’t even eat mocha flavored ice cream or candy. I didn’t even like Tiramisu. So at the ripe old age of 43, I decided to train myself to become a coffee drinker. I was determined to become one of those women wandering around Target sipping their fancy Starbucks drinks looking so cool and Zen.

Step 1 – While out of town at a youth hockey tournament, my friend Kim and fellow hockey mom poured me a cup of coffee from the hotel lobby. She gave me packets of sugar and cream and told me to give it a try. Blah! There was no amount of sugar that was going to get me to drink that. But she didn’t give up. Later that day we found ourselves in a Borders Starbucks. She ordered me a Salted Caramel Mocha. It wasn’t bad. I drank the whole cup. This just might work so I cut the soda cold turkey.

Step 2 – That following week, I went to Target every day sometimes twice a day just to get my Salted Caramel Mocha hit. At $5-$10 a day and thousands of extra calories this was going to become an expensive, waistline expanding new habit. I had to switch to the skinny. That was tough but I got used to it after a few weeks. Meanwhile, I started making flavored coffee at home and adding International Delight creamers. This saved me some pennies and a few calories.

Step 3 – After a year I still could only drink coffee with creamer. My goal was to eliminate the extra calories. So once again I went into training mode. I made a pan of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls and poured a cup of my favorite Vanilla Macadamia Nut Kona Coffee and skipped the creamer. One bite of roll followed by one sip of coffee and viola! I was drinking coffee straight up! After almost a year and a half, I finally consider myself a coffee drinker and I no longer need the pastry chaser or the creamer.

Today’s Challenge – I avoided soda completely for the first two months. After that I allowed myself to indulge every so often while dining out even though I craved it constantly. But lately I have been slowly slipping back into my soda habit mainly because our coffee makers keep dying. We’ve been through three in the last year. After just a few months, they stop brewing a full pot. We think it might be our hard water.

Anyone have tips on how to extend the life of our overly used and abused coffee maker before I end up addicted to soda again?!


Sanae Shea

Sanae Shea is a girly girl living in a house full of men…1 husband, 3 sons and new puppy named Ted. When she’s not busy with her boys, you’ll find her teaching Zumba Fitness classes at several locations throughout Kearney. She is also a skin care consultant for RX Skin Therapy at USave Pharmacy in Kearney. Learn more about Sanae at www.zumbawithsanae.com.