What impact does drinking have to your training?
Drinking after your gym session is a surefire way to erase all that hard work you just did. Your average pint of beer contains about 180 calories and there is 159 calories in a glass of white wine (with 13% alcohol content). When you really think about it, does that “one” drink you promised yourself, become two or more? If so, you end up topping up those calories. When you exercised with weights for half an hour and you burnt off approximately 300 calories, it only takes two pints of beer to bring it back full circle.
How does alcohol affect your body?
The way alcohol affects your figure really depends on many factors (genetics, diet, gender, habits, …), but one of the consistent effects of alcohol is that it adds calories to your diet. It may not contain fat, but it does contain 7 calories per gram. That is more than protein and carbohydrates.
1 can (12 oz) Beer – 135-145 calories
1 glass (3.5 oz) Red or White Wine – 70-75 calories
1 shot (1.5 oz) Gin, rum, vodka or whiskey – 97 calories
Studies have shown that it can stimulate appetite. This is especially apparent after having a big night out and the temptation of fast food to help “soak up the alcohol” is hard to resist. The combination of alcohol and greasy food is pretty harmful and stunts, if not ruins, your expectations and goals for weight loss. Not to mention that it prevents your body from burning fat and taking in other available nutrients.
Alcohol makes it harder to stick to a healthy diet especially if you drink very frequently. It requires a tonne of will power and discipline to make sure you’re consuming the right amount of calories and food.
Running on empty.
Fitness experts agree that to get the most from cardiovascular exercises (such as running or swimming), you have to put in the physical effort. While a hangover may make (an albeit less effective) workout feel needed, it’s harder to get in shape when you have a headache, dizziness and nausea. The night before, alcohol leaves your body dehydrated, way before your training even begins, so if you plan to go train after a big night out, think twice, or at least, stay hydrated.
Reap the benefits.
If you don’t want to choose between alcohol and exercise (we are not saying you should completely cut it out) then consider cutting down the quantity ingested. Enjoy a drink and maintain a healthy lifestyle. They say, “Moderation is the key to enjoying life”.
Re-assess your relationship with alcohol. Does it really affect your workout? Do you feel that it’s really slowing down your long term goals? For example: if you are looking to reduce your stress, lose weight and feel more alert, then reduce the amount you drink. We guarantee you will see a change.
Cutting down the amount of alcohol in your diet will guarantee quicker results in the gym. Be aware of your general health and how it affects you and your ability to achieve your desired fitness goals. Not to mention, it will also reduce your risk of developing heart problems, cancer and liver problems in the future as well.
Here’s a simple infographic to help you understand what happens to alcohol in the body.