The upsides of my very unsweet New Year’s resolution

Emily Chin, Social Media Editor

Holiday Guide

On Dec. 30, 2013, I realized I had a problem.

There was way too much chocolate everywhere I went and I was eating all of it. Whenever someone offered me chocolate, my obvious answer was yes, because why not? A glance in the mirror told me why not. I looked at myself and knew that something about my diet had to be eliminated. As painful as it was, the logical answer was chocolate.

So on Jan. 1, 2014, I made a pact to not eat chocolate for an entire year. This included chocolate drinks, chocolate candy bars, even desserts with chocolate shavings. My fling with sweets was a thing of the past, not to be rekindled for the entire year.

At first, controlling the urge to steal a bite of my sister’s molten lava cake was doable, but it wasn’t long before the cravings got real. When my friends and I went out for dessert, I had a significantly smaller set of sweets to choose from, and if we shared it was always a little awkward to say, “We have to order something without chocolate.”

The most challenging part about my chocolate abstention was not drinking chocolate milk. Usually, I drink a glass of chocolate milk after every workout, because someone once told me the potassium in chocolate milk prevents muscle soreness (It works!). What was I going to do without chocolate milk?

As the year progressed, the chocolate-free life got exponentially easier. As a kid, I didn’t eat a lot, and learned to restrain myself when it came to unhealthy foods. I practiced this same self control when it came to avoiding chocolate. After a while, it no longer pained me to say “No thank you” to my once-favorite food.

I’m actually really glad I completed my chocolate-free year. Staying away from chocolate helped me stay away from desserts and candy, which had a significant impact on my diet. I also proved to myself and others that New Year’s resolutions aren’t unachievable — you just have to put in a little effort.

That said, when 2015 rolled around, you can guess who immediately broke into a box of truffles.

Emily Chin is a Medill sophomore. She can be reached at [email protected]. If you would like to respond publicly to this column, send a Letter to the Editor to [email protected].

The views expressed in this piece do not necessarily reflect the views of all staff members of The Daily Northwestern.