Alcohol and Fitness: Is Drinking Alcohol Really That Bad?


alcohol and fitness

Do Alcohol and Fitness Mix Well?

Everyone is entitled to a little fun, and an indulgence can be a healthy thing, especially psychologically. Even hardcore weight lifters such as bodybuilders opt for a cheat meal on occasion. Alcohol and fitness has been been a subject of debate for everyone to the occasional sippers, to the outright enthusiasts. Lots of people enjoy drinking a few beers or having a glass of wine, or perhaps it’s a cocktail before a meal that is appealing. I’ve been a personal trainer in Austin for a good long time, and believe me, Austin is a town that knows a thing or 2 about food and alcohol. Alcohol is pervasive in virtually every society, and it’s effects are well documented, but what are the effects of alcohol on weight training?

Alcohol and fitness don’t mix as obviously you should never be consuming cocktails before or during weight training for the obvious reasons that it impairs your motor skills as well as well as your judgement, so you are potentially setting setting yourself up for a hold my beer and watch this moment, which is embarrassing at best, but more than likely, injurious to yourself and/or those around you. Another reason to avoid mixing alcohol and fitness, before any kind of physical activity, is because alcohol dehydrates the body. Without the proper levels of hydration, muscles can cramp, become fatigued quickly, and not contract optimally since they are not having their waste by products such as lactic acid, carbon dioxide, etc, removed efficiently.

One of the less obvious reasons why those who are seriously weight training for hypertrophy, or a sport specific goal, is that alcohol suppresses blog entries in our bodies, which is an integral part of how we synthesize protein, and thus facilitate the muscle building process. In essence, what happens when you mix alcohol and fitness in this scenario, you have slowed your body’s overall ability to synthesize protein by up to 40%, according to a study published in 2011. Different types of tissue, of course, are effected at different rates by alcohol. For example, protein synthesis in the liver is reduced to 60% from heavy alcohol consumption, and a reduction of up to 75% has been recorded in the spleen. While this doesn’t mean that all of your weight training and nutritional efforts are for naught, it does imply, however, that you are far from maximizing any potential gains by consuming too much alcohol, and furthermore, that the regular over consumption of alcohol makes it very hard for your body to rejuvenate itself, and is simply terrible for your health.
Drinking, at least in small quantities is not without benefit, however. It has been shown in countless studies since the 1970’s that alcohol can improve one’s insulin sensitivity, as well as play a role in the reduction of lipids in the bloodstream, which contributes to a reduced risk of heart disease. Those benefits are negated when we drink to excess, however, so moderation is key.

Whether you drink, moderately or not, is entirely up to you. It’s much the same as whether you indulge in dessert foods, sodas, and the like, with the exception that moderate alcohol consumption has positive health benefits. If you drink a little more than moderately, as long as you understand the health risks being posed, that is obviously your decision. As far as the health and fitness world goes, there’s nothing wrong with kicking back a few beers every once in a while and relaxing. How often you do that, and how you define a few, is what ultimately is going to determine the impact that alcohol has on you, not just within the realm of your fitness routine, but your overall life as well.

Ready to Get Started?

The following two tabs change content below.
Andy
My name is Andy Bruchey and I founded Complete Fitness Design over 20 years ago. I specialize in weight loss/gain, including the addition of quality, lean muscle mass, corrective flexibility, post injury rehabilitation, nutrition and sports specific training.
Andy

Latest posts by Andy (see all)

Summary
Alcohol and Fitness: Is Drinking Alcohol Really That Bad?
Article Name
Alcohol and Fitness: Is Drinking Alcohol Really That Bad?
Description
Austin personal trainer Andy Bruchey discusses what can happen when alcohol and fitness are mixed together from the obvious dangerous reasons, to the lowering of your body's ability to recover from workouts and grow muscle.
Author
Publisher Name
Andy Bruchey- Complete Fitness Design
Publisher Logo

Comments are closed.

Contact Us

Complete Fitness Design
Complete Fitness Design
3100 W Slaughter Ln Austin, TX 78748
512-484-2270
[email protected]

Recent Posts

About Andy

My name is Andy Bruchey and I am a longtime Austin personal trainer having founded Complete Fitness Design over 20 years ago. I specialize in weight loss/gain, including the addition of quality, lean muscle mass, corrective flexibility, post injury rehabilitation, nutrition, and sports specific training for professionals. Contact me today to see how I can help you!
3100 W Slaughter Ln Austin , Texas 78748 512-484-2270