Health

How going coffee free for a week helped my sleeping pattern

The Growing Up Guide coffee caffeine Starbucks late espresso

I‘m one of those people who cannot survive without coffee.

Say it’s because I’m Italian and we drink more espressos than water, say it’s because I barely ever get 8 hours of sleep, or say it’s because I just really, really enjoy the taste – I have not gone more than a couple of days without having a coffee.

You can imagine how much I was dreading a whole week without it. One of my flatmates kept mocking me saying I was either going to fail or kill someone in the attempt.

The title gives it away, but I did it and I can assure you I have not killed anyone in the process (even though the thought crossed my mind a few times).

Day 1

I started my week without coffee on the Monday after a great/terrible weekend. I don’t know if it was due to the lack of caffeine or if I actually still had alcohol in my system, but I still felt hungover throughout the morning.

I walked to work at 8:30am feeling like a zombie who smoked too much weed.

By lunch time the feeling was almost gone, but safe to say I was in bed at 10:30pm and had to abandon movie night with my flat.
According to my Fitbit I slept eight whole hours that night without any restless moments. An event that had not happened since I was probably 13.

Day 2

Another early morning, up at 7am and on the go at 8:30am. I was very tempted to stop for a latte on my way to work. Didn’t feel quite as high as I felt the day before, but definitely still a zombie.

Again, lunch time saved me. Tuesday is also workout day, which I was dreading as I thought I would not have had enough energy to do it, but I actually felt a lot more energic than usual when it came 7pm and I had to hit the gym.

I was asleep at 11pm, slept again a whole eight hours with very little restless moments.

The Growing Up Guide coffee mug desk work

Day 3

I finally got to sleep in and I sure needed it. Nine hours of sleep regenerated me and I finally stopped feeling the withdraw from coffee.

Found a new favourite, matcha latte – yes I know, there is caffeine in it and it is a bit like cheating, but it’s not coffee so let me get away with this one.

Day 4 to 7

After two terrible days and one decent one, I finally feel like I can survive without my three shots of espresso in the morning (A LOT, I know).

Plenty of friends asked me throughout the week how I was doing and I almost wanted to lie saying I felt terrible because I love coffee that much and don’t want to give it up. –  I think that shows how addicted I am.

Truth is, not having coffee in the morning massively improved my sleeping pattern.

I went from six hours per night with many restless moments to a minimum of eight to nine hours without ever waking up during the night.

Sure, first two days were HORRIBLE, but it was a change that I needed to feel on my skin to figure out if I was indeed having too much coffee. I definitely was – shocking, I know.

Will I stop having coffee from now on? No. No way. Pretty sure they’d take my citizenship away if I stop having espressos in the morning.

I will have a lot less though, stick to one shot when I wake up and herbal teas during the day.

How much caffeine do you have a day? Do you think it could be affecting your sleeping pattern too? Share your coffee habits in the comments.

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