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Struggling..

Old 08-23-18, 01:29 PM
  #26  
CliffordK
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Originally Posted by Troul View Post
Unless you have a serious need to quit, it in my opinion, isn't the worst habit.
https://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/...smokings-toll/

Drop 10 years off of the average life expectancy. Whew!!!!

Of course it doesn't impact everyone the same. Some will drop dead at 50, others will survive into their 90's.

You won't really know which camp you will fall into until you get lung cancer or bladder cancer or throat cancer, or emphysema... Or you are one that make it to a good old age, and kick it for some other reason.

And, of course, secondary effects such as asthma in children.
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Old 08-23-18, 01:31 PM
  #27  
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Definitely most pleased to meet you! I knew I liked you by how much humor you displayed when we were ribbing you in another thread.

Keep in mind how much you've already changed in less than a year, and you may not yet be ready for one more big change.

If you can't quit smoking right now, please don't beat yourself up so much that you lose what you've done with your sobriety and bike riding. It's all baby steps, but those are the results of a lot of baby steps, and you have to decide to stick with them every day.

I've never really smoked habitually, so I won't pretend to have relevant experience, but I have been through some of the things you describe. Maybe the way it will work is you end up spending so much money on bikes that you can't afford cigs!
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Old 08-23-18, 01:43 PM
  #28  
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I suspect cigs are about as tough to quit as anything. My dad (who was alcoholic) smoked. He tried to quit smoking once, and he put his cigs in the bureau across the room instead of his breast shirt pocket. He found that when phone rang, he'd first reach for that pocket. Not finding the cigs, there was a moment's disconnect. HE DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO ANSWER THE PHONE WITHOUT LIGHTING UP A CIG! Talk about an additive neuromodulator. My Dad was a pretty capable guy (executive, business owner, pro Tour golfer) but quitting the cigs was tough for him. The cancer in his tongue and neck was God's little hint that he might want to work harder at it.

My grandfather, whose dad also was an alcoholic, smoked. Someone once taunted him: "Bunk, [his nickname], I don't believe you could quit smoking if you wanted to". He glared at his friend, threw his cigs in the drawer, and never touched them again. There was a cost. I once was talking to may Dad. "Gee, Dad, Grand-Dad is a really nice guy to everyone". My day made a face. "Boy, when my Dad was my age, he'd knock you across the room for looking at him cross-eyed".

For some reason, rehab centers seem to be major profit centers for the tobacco industry. Like, EVERYBODY smokes. It seems a little strange in today's world, where smoking is being banned most places.

I wish I could offer you practical advice as opposed to anecdotes, but suspect that others may have experience. Experiencing this as the son of an alcoholic, I will say that every day you stay clean and sober will make your friends and family and those that love you happy. If you do nothing else, stay clean and sober today and have a win. Do that just for today, and everyone will be saying a little prayer of thanks for you tonight. And ten months - you are to be commended! Congratulations.

I wish you the best.

Last edited by WizardOfBoz; 08-23-18 at 01:52 PM.
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Old 08-23-18, 01:50 PM
  #29  
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I'd hate to defer one addiction to another. However, ever seen the movie Major Payne? A guy is shot in the leg and hurting real bad. He asks for the guys finger and reaches over and breaks it "that leg don't hurt no more does it".

Maybe get into a formal bike training plan with some really tough intervals.

Or pick a fondo or something and sign up knowing you have to train hard enough you can't smoke, or the pain from training is enough that the pain of withdrawl doesn't have the same edge.
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Old 08-23-18, 02:04 PM
  #30  
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I quit smoking cold turkey after tapering down to about 1 butt every 2 hours (1/2 pack a day) about 4 years before I started cycling seriously, and I always made sure I had a pack of butts on me during the first 30 days, just in case I decided it was time to have one. It actually helped reduce the stress of quitting.

$5/pack X 365 days = $1,825 a year Quit today and put that $5 per day into an envelope. At the end of next year, that'll be a good amount to reward yourself with a new bike, which you'll need to keep up with your new lungs.

Cycling is now the reason I don't get $h1tfaced anymore, since I don't want to feel bad when riding the next day, especially if I'm with a riding group. This is also why I try to fit in as many 8am Saturday and Sunday morning group rides as possible and with riders faster than me. I don't even think about showing up with even the slightest hangover.
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Old 08-23-18, 02:07 PM
  #31  
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I was in your shoes, except I wasn't cycling at the time. I was never a heavy smoker, most I ever smoked was 1/2 a pack a day, but my wife hated it, and I didn't want my young kids to see me doing it. So I tried to quit. I took a class, tried the gum, patch, and my doctor prescribed me wellbutrin(?). Nothing even came close to working. The problem for me wasn't weight gain, or sleeplessness or anything else. The problem was the severe emotional swings I experienced. I'd go from screaming rage to uncontrollable crying and depression in about 2 minutes and anything could set me off. And that was on the drugs and the pharma nicotine.


So I decided to try vaping after doing a lot of research about it. And this was about 7 years ago before it had such a big sub-culture around it. It was still new enough that I could actually vape in a Walmart and nobody would know what I was doing or what it was in case they caught a glimpse. I even vaped in an airplane cabin on several work trips. Just blow it out slowly into a hot cup of coffee and it looked like steam from the coffee.


Vaping was the best thing I did to quit smoking. I was able to switch completely from cigarettes to vaping immediately. Now, I had some serious issues with depression about 4 years ago and started smoking again off and on. But now it's been 18 months since I last smoked. I feel so amazingly better then I did as a smoker. If you have tried other nicotine reduction therapies and they haven't worked (they have a ridiculously low success rate btw. About 4%) then please give vaping a try. Go to a vape store, tell them you are a smoker and want to quit and they'll tell you what you need to buy. And they will do it gladly because they used to smoke too. Not only will your health improve, but you'll have more money every week to save up for that killer bike you probably want.


I started off at a 24 mg/ml concentration and am now down to a 1.5 mg/ml. My goal is to be off nicotine completely by the end of this year and am well on my way. As soon as I can be off nic I'm signing up for my first century.


I know a lot of people bag on vapers (and some of them deserve it to be honest) but vaping is significantly less harmful than cigarettes as far as we know (more studies are needed). I think people see someone vaping and assume they are doing it to be cool or some other vapid reason. In my experience if you see someone vaping, they are doing it because they are trying to take control of their health and better their lives, not to look cool.
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Old 08-23-18, 03:33 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by noimagination View Post
If smoking is what it takes to get through the day without drinking or drugging, then ... yes, it is not the worst habit - better than driving drunk or high, or losing your job due to being drunk/high at work, or missing your child's HS graduation because you're too drunk/high, or ......

(Words from one who's partner is a recovering addict.)

-----------
exactly what. Thanks for explaining it to those not understanding.

<- non-smoker
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Old 08-23-18, 04:29 PM
  #33  
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I started smoking in high school and started trying to quit my third year of college. The first two times were a no-go. The third time I was dating a girl at another College. I had been spending extended weekends at her place and enjoying all the interpersonal activities that go with that sort of thing, if you know what I'm talking about. One night she said that if I left the bed to get a cigarette, that would be the end of the interpersonal activities. With that motivation, and the change of venue away from my daily smoking routine I was able to stop with no relapses in 34 years.

I call it the lysistrata method. All it takes is an extended weekend of interpersonal activities with a 20 year old coed.

All jokes aside, congratulations on your sobriety, I've never had that problem, but from what I've seen others go through, I don't know if I could have done what you did.

I wish you success in your quest to quit.
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Old 08-23-18, 05:05 PM
  #34  
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One alternative is genuine Swedish Snus. NOT the Camel snus found in gas stations (which still has all kinds of weird ingredients), but the kind that comes from actual Sweden. Swedish Match/General is the brand commonly found in the US, usually at fine tobacco stores. You can also order it directly from Sweden. Unless you live in the EU outside of Scandanavia, in which case no Snus for you.

This stuff is not your uncle's nasty chew. It comes in little pouches and is spit-free and very discreet.

I used to be a heavy smoker, and have been off cigarettes since April 2013. I first quit through a combination of vaping and Nicorette lozenges, but I found the fake sugar in all the oral nicotine products absolutely vile, and while vaping helped with things like the morning and after dinner cigarettes, I eventually worked through that. I discovered Snus about four months in, and while it's not great or perfect, it does what I need in a way that doesn't impact my cycling performance.

Congrats on the 10 months sobriety - you can do this! I quit alcohol in April 2010, and haven't looked back.
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Old 08-23-18, 05:08 PM
  #35  
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I quit smoking when my wife was pregnant. I used chantix. It's no joke. It was a miserable, miserable, process, but it was good for breaking my habit.

Unfortunately, I had a moment of weakness and started again a couple years ago. After I started again I realized that even after I had been off nicotine for a few years, I was kind of a mean bastard when I wasn't smoking. I was also riding a bike at the time that I started again and I didn't like what it was doing to my lungs. I tried vaping for a little while, but didn't love it. I'm kind of resigned to the fact that I might never be nicotine-free. It seems like useful self-medication to me. I've been using General brand snus to satisfy my cravings. It's not smoke-cured like American smokeless tobacco so has much lower levels of nitrosamines. There are quite a few studies showing no increased risk of cancer or heart disease. It'd probably be better for my health if I cut out nicotine all together, but well... you know...

Last edited by clengman; 08-23-18 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 08-23-18, 05:12 PM
  #36  
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I haven't quit yet but I feel like thinking its so hard and so addictive is not helping. A lot of people quit cold turkey or cut down in various ways. it is possible and as one person here said after a few days it isn't so bad. Get over that feeling its so horrible to quit. I was sick not long ago and went 2 days, it wasn't that bad but unfortunately I get better and am a jerk.

Similar to what the above said about a weekend with a 21 yr old coed. I've been meaning to go to a spa and spend a lot of time in the sauna and exercising to detox and get the chems out thinking that will help, can bring the bike.
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Old 08-23-18, 05:23 PM
  #37  
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I don't know if this will help but it is useful to know regardless but most companies in the U.S. test cigarettes on animals and many of these facilities in addition to the normal abusive and exploitative testing will punch 4 month old beagle puppies in the face (Huntingdon Life Sciences was well known for that) making animals starve and other general forms of abuse. Animals live their lives in pain and suffering being locked up not because they committed a crime but simply because they exist. The site I loved which had excellent information on the topic is since gone or I cannot find it anymore but this has some stuff with some older photos: Animal testing - Tobacco - ESDAW (I hold no responsibility of what else is posted on that site or anything like that).

If someone wants to argue about this for whatever silly reason, please send me a private message as I am here trying to help someone quite smoking not debate the topic at hand on a bike forum.

Congrats on the sobriety and lots of luck with kicking cigs.
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Old 08-23-18, 06:26 PM
  #38  
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Go cold turkey. Your brain has to make the decision for you first though. Once your brain starts directing your path the addiction will become an adversary that your brain "likes" to fight and win against. That fuels the road to a permanent recovery. Once you get through that dark tunnel and emerge into the sunshine again you won't ever want to turn around and go back in the direction you came from.
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Old 08-23-18, 06:32 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by 2pedals5 View Post
Before I got into road bikes, I went through years of drugs and drinking. Unfortunately got me into coma more than once. With a long rehab, I got back on my feet and staying sober. Tomorrow will be my 10th months soberity. On the sad side, I still smoke cigs. When I got into bike, I thought it would help me quit and stay quit. Well it didn't. So when I commute 10 miles or whatever the ride is for....I often beat myself that I couldn't quit. Any suggestion to quit cigs and stay quit? If youre gonna say patches, I have tried that. Its a mental torture. Its not much helping. Hope you can come up with something. Thanks.
I believe in harm reduction. So I suggest switching to dip or snus asap.
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Old 08-23-18, 06:38 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by drlogik View Post
NO! That 5hit is just as addictive or worse! I had a friend who quit cigarettes for 20 years and tried dip on a fishing trip. 10 years on and he still dips two cans a day and said it's been harder to shake than cigarettes ever were.
I know. Nicotine is addictive. But dip or snus is like 98% less harmful than smoking.
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Old 08-23-18, 06:45 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by 2pedals5 View Post
Any suggestion to quit cigs and stay quit?
Maybe you could think of my Dad. A decorated WWII combat Veteran, very disciplined, tough as nails. A good father. He tried to quit smoking several times, but he never lasted long. It was his one weakness.

Hardly ever sick, until he got Lung Cancer. He died too young. And trust me when I say that I have seen Lung Cancer, and you do not want any part of it.

Please, quit to save your own life, while you still can.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:05 PM
  #42  
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I know he should of just kept smoking, right?
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Old 08-23-18, 07:08 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by 2pedals5 View Post
Before I got into road bikes, I went through years of drugs and drinking. Unfortunately got me into coma more than once. With a long rehab, I got back on my feet and staying sober. Tomorrow will be my 10th months soberity. On the sad side, I still smoke cigs. When I got into bike, I thought it would help me quit and stay quit. Well it didn't. So when I commute 10 miles or whatever the ride is for....I often beat myself that I couldn't quit. Any suggestion to quit cigs and stay quit? If youre gonna say patches, I have tried that. Its a mental torture. Its not much helping. Hope you can come up with something. Thanks.
I was in your shoes about 10 years ago. I am so happy that you have 10 months under your belt. It took rehab to get me off the booze and drugs, it was extremely difficult, when I get the urge to pick up I asked myself "how would using make anything better" and remind myself how terrible I felt when using. Hang in there it gets even better.

Quitting smoking, I feel, was harder than stopping using. I could not have done it without Chantex, it worked for me. check for organizations that will help with cost, though continuing smoking is not cheap either, but don't push yourself too hard. starting using would be a step backwards and there are a lot of people rooting for you, including me.

I have found I have more time, money, and happiness since I quit everything. not to mention the monkey off my back.

cycling alone, for me, is almost like meditation or therapy. it clears my head and makes me feel better. cycling in a group is great too, I love the camaraderie.

never give up and use all your tools and contacts when you need help

dont give up before the miracle happens.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:11 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Cl904 View Post
keep smoking... we’re here for a good time, not a long time.
If you smoke, your odds of spending your last weeks of life pushing a morphine injector attached to your IV as you are fighting the pain of cancer are greatly increased. That is no one's idea of a good time.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:16 PM
  #45  
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When I was younger, I worked for an interesting man. He was a rich businessman, who made money in the real estate business. He owned two beach homes, a lakeside home, a cattle ranch, cars, boats, etc. But when he was young, he was a homeless alcoholic. He turned his life around at the age of 30, quitting the drinking and smoking, and fighting his cravings by focusing on his work. He kept his mind and body busy with work, and it paid off. He spent a lot of time counseling people with drug and alcohol problems, going so far as to visit jails and prisons, and give inmates jobs when they were released. He always said that he was not a smart or sensible man, and that if someone as hopeless as himself could turn his life around, anyone could.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:24 PM
  #46  
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I took up running once, long ago, and had no intention to give up cigs. Funny thing happened; over a period of time I realized I was taking a drag on the cig and blowing some out before I inhaled. Didn't think much of it, but later I noticed that the amount I was blowing out kept increasing and the amount I was inhaling kept decreasing. One day at work I was in the break room for a smoke and realized I was blowing ALL of it out. Did a double-take at the cig like I'd never seen one before, said, "I don't need these at all," and chucked the pack away. That was it. No withdrawals, either.

I was never a good runner, and I usually only did two miles a day, but I did it EVERY day. There might have been three or four days a year that the weather stopped me, if the snow was too deep alongside the road or if the heat and humidity were dangerously high.

If you absolutely can't shake nicotine, the best you can do is vape it instead of burning it.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:32 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by honcho View Post
Your info doesn't say what state you're in, but there are states that have smoking cessation programs funded with money from lawsuits against the tobacco companies. Unfortunately, many states have just dumped the money into their general funds and use it for things other than helping smokers.

Good luck.
I'm in Indiana. I'll need to update the info.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:47 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by 50PlusCycling View Post
If you smoke, your odds of spending your last weeks of life pushing a morphine injector attached to your IV as you are fighting the pain of cancer are greatly increased. That is no one's idea of a good time.
I smoke. I ride without a helmet. I ride rim brakes in the rain. I have a crabon fork on my steel road bike. I like motorcycles and skateboards. i do all kinds of stuff that may kill me.

And looking at the overdose dose rate in this country it seems like plenty of people think pushing iv morphine is a good time.
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Old 08-23-18, 07:59 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
Congrats on sobriety!!!

Echoing others on smoking cigs, don't beat yourself up. I smoked some but never really liked it, so I lucked out.

Yes to vaping. Biggest harm in cigarettes is all that other "filler" besides nicotine, like the burning plant matter. Also, the tobacco plant has a nasty tendency to absorb heavy metals, and this is amplified when cured.

Turn smoking from a habit into a treat, and don't push yourself too hard.
I strongly second the vaping option. I've been off cigs for 6 years now with vaping. It's worked for an awful lot of folks so far...and very enjoyable, if you still like nicotine (which isn't the part of smoking that destroys your health).
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Old 08-23-18, 08:49 PM
  #50  
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...if you still like nicotine (which isn't the part of smoking that destroys your health)
You might want to Google "nicotine heart health" to find a different side.
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