In this article I’m going to go over some points to consider when it comes to drinking alcohol and reaching our fitness goals.
I’m not going to make it a science based article quoting percentages and the like, rather – a more practical piece that you can have a think about and apply to your own life...
Alcohol & The Gym – Do They Mix?
Drinking alcohol is a popular past time for many.
Ranging from a glass of wine on a night to relax, a few sociable drinks with friends at the local pub, to full on nights out until the early hours.
With many things in life there is often a “push-pull” relationship between certain activities or wants that we have.
For Example - we want to be more sociable & go out more….yet we want to improve our body/gym lifts at the same time…now although these things aren’t mutually exclusive, going to an extreme with either the gym or drinking can take away from the other - so it can be a balancing act at times which often requires a bit of restraint here and there so that we can find a happy medium (if that’s what you want).
So let’s go over a few points to consider when it comes to drinking alcohol and reaching your fitness goals before bringing it together in the conclusion.
Pros of Drinking
- Drinking can be a great way to have fun with your friends on a night out
- Drinks such as wine (in moderation) can assist people to relax and to de-stress after a hard/stressful week
- Having a drink with somebody can be an easy way to connect
Cons of Drinking
- Alcohol dehydrates the body, which in turn can affect performance (muscle is predominantly water)
- Bad hangovers can make you feel bad for a long time after the event, when you’re in bed half the day recovering, you're not going to get chance to eat any food that will help with your fitness goals!
- Can be expensive when done frequently
Depending on where you are in life and what you are wanting, drinking may or may not be important to you.
However, if you’re really struggling to make any progress when it comes to your body and in the gym…yet you’re going out and drinking all weekend/not sleeping well – it’s probably no surprise.
This is where you need to step back and assess what it is you’re doing, if you want to make progress – take control and reduce the drinking or stop it entirely for at least a period of time (8 weeks for example) – you can still go out though!
If you’re not willing to do that, then lower your expectations when it comes to your training/fitness goals.
It may not even be “just” the alcohol, it may be the late nights (poor sleep), take-away food after a night out…..and the alcohol combined that’s stopping you from progressing (or just the poor sleep if you don't drink that much).
At least if you take some time off the alcohol, you'll know and can go from there.
“Raise your standards or lower your expectations”