Longtime pro golfer John Daly has cut back on several of the vices that made him one of the most infamous athletes on the PGA Tour, but he still enjoys the occasional Diet Coke -- or 12.
Daly sat down with The Guardian ahead of this weekend’s Masters at Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia. During the interview, the 47-year-old, who has battled addictions to alcohol and gambling over the last few decades, revealed that he’s taken steps toward curtailing his well-known affinity for soda.
“I still drink [Diet Coke] but not nearly as much as I used to,” Daly told The Guardian. In his 2006 autobiography, Daly admitted to drinking 514 gallons of Diet Coke per year, For The Win notes. However, an overweight Daly underwent lap band surgery in 2009, a procedure that helped address his weight issue, but also prevents him from binging on Diet Coke.
“The [lap band] won’t allow me to drink as many,” Daly continued. “If I don’t have ice, I can’t drink it. I can’t have it straight because of the carbonation. I have to drink it slowly and not out of a can, I need some ice.”
At the peak of his Diet Coke habit, Daly claims to have drank “26-28 cans a day,” The Guardian reports. “Now I have 10-12 at the most,” he said.
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Daly is also winning his battle with alcohol addiction. May 2014 will mark his sixth year of sobriety, The Guardian reports. On the other hand, he still smokes about 40 cigarettes a day, and he hasn’t embraced the cardio training routines adopted by the Tour’s up-and-coming golfers.
"Some guys want to do a little more cardio training; I can't see me being allowed to smoke a cigarette on a treadmill,” he said. “I don't think they will let me into the gym if I do that. Will they?"
[h/t The Big Lead]