Caffeine and me

I recently bought a coffee machine. I never thought I would. I mean, I’m not really one of those OMG I NEED COFFEE TO FUNCTION type of people.

If I don’t have caffeine in a day then I’m generally OK. It’s just habit and the enjoyment factor as to why I regularly drink it. I don’t start shaking or fading through the day or get headaches.

At work it’s a way to get away from the desk and keep me from endlessly snacking on #allthefood in the office. I’ll have a black instant coffee, and thoroughly enjoy it. At the weekend I’d treat myself to something a bit more elaborate at Starbucks, but more because it’s a fun drink to enjoy. I’m that person who has an obnoxious order… half decaf half caf medium Americano with sugar free hazelnut syrup and hot skimmed milk. Why half and half? Because I do like to limit caffeine where I can (and sugar…). I don’t want to become dependent on it and I like to use caffeine in big races to inject some speed into my legs. I don’t want my tolerance level to become skewed.

So why did I get a coffee machine then? Well, I was finding that my Starbucks weekend habit was fairly costly over the year (my drink is around £2.40, so around a fiver a week). In the back of my cupboard I found a milk frother that I’d never used and found I could heat up almond milk and froth it nicely to add to my coffee. I also bought my own sugar-free hazelnut syrup from Amazon, because I’m fancy like that 😉 And literally it’s like Starbucks in my kitchen!I’ve also been drinking a pre-workout before the gym which contains quite a high dose of caffeine (~240mg) and I didn’t want to keep buying it – though I enjoy using it from time to time because it has other added benefits. I do enjoy feeling a bit more awake before the gym so didn’t want to give up entirely on caffeine.So with a coffee machine I could dictate how much coffee I had (and whether it was caffeinated or not) and reduce my coffee/pre-workout expenditure. Killing two birds with one stone.

After a lengthy time wondering what type to buy (most people advising on the very cool looking Nespresso machines) I eventually just settled for a simple coffee maker.

The problem with the Nespresso machines (and the pod coffee makers in general) is that the size of the drink you get is quite small. And I didn’t really want anything too fancy first thing in the morning. Also the pods themselves were expensive, so defeating the point of trying to save money. I wanted a proper MUG of coffee that was cheap and easy to use.So I bought this very cheap Russell Hobs Brew and Go machine from Amazon (around £27.99 – this isn’t a sponsored post by the way!). It comes with a travel cup and basically you can dictate how much coffee you put in and how much water you use. Perfect!

Some people give caffeine a bad rep or just avoid it for their own reasons and that’s fine. Everyone to themselves. But I know that a little bit of caffeine before the gym or before a race can really help my performance. It’s a legal supplement to take and it’s cheap. But if I didn’t have my cup of coffee before a race it wouldn’t panic me. I do parkrun and long runs every week without coffee and perform just fine. Perhaps it’s psychological then that I see these performance gains… who knows. What I do know is, I enjoy coffee and enjoy feeling more awake at 5.30am before I hit the gym.

What are your thoughts on coffee and caffeine in general?

If you drink coffee, how do you take it?

Do you have a coffee machine?

15 Replies to “Caffeine and me”

  1. I’m always really intrigued around other’s attitudes to caffeine / coffee. Maybe I’m just really nosy. That coffee machine sounds great – I’m not really a fan of Nespresso type ones either as I don’t like tiny strong coffees. I have a grande-sized soy cappuccino when I get to the office which is my work day breakfast (along with some fruit) and at the weekends I’ll get a Starbucks take out or have a coffee at brunch. I’m pretty brand loyal to Starbucks but mostly because I know they do soy milk and I genuinely like the taste of their coffee – also living abroad and travelling Starbucks is weirdly comforting as it’s pretty much the same everywhere!

  2. I love coffee but again just for the enjoyment of drinking it. I don’t actually ever feel any effects from caffeine, which is both good and bad. I could drink I coffee before bed and fall straight asleep, but then again whenever I actually need a pick-me-up, coffee has no effect so that’s annoying. Maybe I should drink more decaf though since caffeine itself isn’t the healthiest, and if I’m just drinking it for the taste it would make sense – I’ve never really thought about it before!!
    That coffee machine looks good though! I had a nespresso one but as you say the pods are expensive and the portions are tiny!! Waste of money, and they don’t even taste as nice as from a coffee shop! Maybe I’ll take a leaf out of your book and look up the Russel Hobbs one! xxx
    April recently posted…Vegan in BrightonMy Profile

    1. I don’t know whether you’re lucky or unlucky to not feel the effects of caffeine! I’m glad that I’m not ultra sensitive but that I can be perked up a bit when I have a coffee, but also that I’m not dependent on it or jittery when I don’t have it.
      Maybe try decaf for a bit and see if there’s any change! It doesn’t really alter the price… and I don’t think caffeine is necessarily bad for you. Lots of studies have found some benefits from it!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Caffeine and meMy Profile

  3. Your almond milk seriously frothed up like that?! Holy smokes girl! Mine never turns out that well. Then again, I use an off brand or store brand, so I suppose that could be why? Whatever – I will never give up my coffee! I drink mine black and my body doesn’t process caffeine the same way as others, so it gives me no adverse effects. I just enjoy its comfort!
    kat recently posted…Food Blogger Confessions pt.2 [TOL #126]My Profile

    1. I just heated it up for 1 minute in the microwave and then used my hand milk frother for about 30 seconds? It seems to work a treat! Maybe you need a different frother as I often change brands dependent on the price!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Caffeine and meMy Profile

  4. Your coffee looks so frothy! I don’t think I have the patience- sometimes I make myself something at home and just use a little electric hand whisk thing, and it does froth up but I don’t do it for that long.
    The other thing with those pod machines is that they are so wasteful- I have seen Starbucks recycle them in store, but not using something in the first place is better than recyling something.
    I love the smell of coffee but still don’t like the taste- I thought I might as I got older but it hasn’t happened yet! I got Andy an aeropress for Christmas last year, and he sometimes uses it at the weekend and the whole house smells lovely.
    I tend to have only one or two cups of “real” tea a day, as if I have more I get a bit jittery and don’t sleep well, but equally I am fine if I don’t have any. I think what other people have is so interesting- I saw someone order a 6 shot americano and I just can’t imagine needing that huge jolt.
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…Welwyn Garden City half marathon 2017My Profile

    1. 6 shots!? That’s INSANE. That would really worry me!
      I don’t use the frother in the morning I hasten to add – ain’t got time for that at 5am 😉 I’ll just take it black then. It’s more at the weekend when I want to be more fancy and have a coffee “experience” rather than just getting some caffeine.
      Yes the waste of the pods are also a factor. With the coffee machine I have left over coffee grounds and I’ve been trying to find ways to re-use them rather than just throw them away. So far I have a container in my fridge with some in which helps absorb foodie odours. And then I just collect a load of grounds and give it to my parents who have a composter.

  5. I’m going to make myself sound really strange, but I can’t stand coffee. Even the smell of it makes me feel peaky. I’m a definite tea addict though and I’m currently enjoying my 4th cup of the day. I don’t know if the whole ‘there’s more caffeine in tea than coffee’ thing is true, but now that I’ve stopped drinking Diet Coke my caffeine intake has dropped. I don’t feel any better.

    Mum bought me a Tassimo machine for Christmas a few years ago and I’ve never used it (I really hope she doesn’t read this!). I looked at the price of the hot chocolate and tea pods and decided they were too expensive. I’ll get around to using the machine one day…

    1. No not strange at all! I know a few people who hate coffee (and tea!). Tea is very comforting. My mum used to make me a cup of tea after school every day. She makes the BEST.

  6. Mmmmm. Coffee. I considered the Russell Hobbs for those mornings when I’m on call, and eventually decided that, really, with a Gaggia existing already in the house, and my propensity for instant…Nah. Not needed. Get coffee en route.

    I have just discovered a very good independent coffee place round the corner from work. But oh! Twice the price of Starbucks. And I get a free coffee once a week with the health insurance… so I’m in the independent place every other day 🙂

    1. It’s nice you get the free coffee (is that with Vitality? So many of my friends have that!). I allow myself one bought coffee a week for old time’s sake (it’s my Wednesday treat).

  7. Hi Anna, I bought a coffee machine over Christmas – best thing I’ve ever bought – well actually the George Foreman grill is the best thing I’ve ever bought, haha! Seriously though, I’ve never been a huge coffee drinker, I think I am now though – I’m pretty reliant on it now and it really helps me before a weights session. Bring on the next coffee!

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