“Oh alcohol, why do you keep me fat?”
Every 5 to 6 weeks, I meet up with my steak club, “The Steak Outs” to guzzle fancy wine, gorge on pounds of flesh and if we still have room, sip coffee and enjoy dessert. We usually wrap up around 11pm, leaving myself with only a few hours of restless sleep, sweating booze.
My alarm goes off and I stagger into the bathroom, smelling of beef, my tongue stained from red wine, and my abs transformed into one round ab. What happened? I worked out yesterday so hard for almost 2 hours and I look like a slob.
Well, I will tell you what happens when we imbibe.
Alcohol impacts everything. Under our skin, everything from hormones, nervous system, metabolic activity, our entire body is affected. All we notice is what we experience, impaired muscles, slurred speech, inability to do coordinated movements, terrible judgment, long recovery, and so on.
Simply put, it is impossible to improve anything with alcohol. “Alcohol is like a pharmacological hand grenade. It affects practically everything around it.” — Stephan Braun in "Buzz: The Science and Lore of Alcohol and Caffeine" I love this statement because it explains exactly what happens to our bodies when we drink. I am all for having fun, but when we imbibe, we inhibit our body from doing pretty much anything.
So here are a few notes to remember while watching your waistline when you're out drinking:
Weight loss comes down to caloric intake (consume) vs. caloric expenditure (the burn). Plan ahead by consuming less calories before a drinking event. Being in a caloric deficit helps offset for the extra calories consumed as alcohol.
Get your protein and veggies early in the day. This will help with feeling satiated while drinking.
Our bodies treat alcohol as a poison and prioritize the need to get rid of it before burning the food we consumed that day. So avoid drunken meals and unnecessary calorie storage.
Most importantly, practice moderation. Easier said than done, but you can do it!