Drinking away your goals

With the weekend rapidly approaching the “balance” aspect definitely comes into play (pun intended). I no longer go out/party all week or even every weekend for that matter. However, this weekend I have my roommate Oso’s birthday party to attend. First, let me elaborate on the fact that Oso is not really my roommate. He is one of my five best friend’s roommates. I just stay at their loft so often that they consider me a roommate. My goal for the weekend is not to overdo it – why?

Of course I hate hangovers. Of course I detest alcohol induced anxiety and metaphysical hangovers. But as I have put more and more effort into my body – I would hate to diminish all of my hard work 5/6 days out of the week by getting drunk, consuming countless empty calories, drunk eating, and then hangover binge eating the next day. That is just a superficial caloric intake reason; however, the science behind alcohol mitigating fitness goals is also compelling.

Studies have shown that alcohol consumption decreases muscle mass and elevates estrogen levels in men and women, which consequently results in fat retention, more specifically belly fat. Basically, in “leimen’s” terms  alcohol eats muscle and throws up fat.

What happens when we drink:

  • Results in ‘alcoholic myopathy’ aka muscle loss – an average loss of muscle somewhere around the 33% range. 
  • Alcoholic Myopathy may result in a decreased rate of protein synthesis, which is the process of building/gaining muscle.  
  • Alcohol slows down your metabolism. 
  • Gentlemen pay attention here: LOWERS TESTOSTERONE LEVELS and RAISES ESTROGEN LEVELS! Testosterone levels appear below average even up to a week later (so if drink regularly – try and figure out when your testosterone levels have a chance to recover)  Not to mention that high estrogen aids in fat retention and storage.

So, my goal on Friday is to have my scheduled early workout, heavy protein load to nourish my muscles, 2 or 3 festive silver tequila on the rocks, and enjoy my Saturday rest day unhungoveredly (yes, I made up that word and suggest you incorporate it into your vocabulary) and not “need” “recovery food”.

I know that all this terrible, horrible, no good, very bad news about alcohol sounds just too awful to be true so here are some articles – I had to find a few myself until I actually believed it..although all the signs were there after my freshman year of college:

http://www.acefitness.org/fitfacts/fitfacts_display.aspx?itemid=2636

http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/drobson11.htm

http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/dean3.htm

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