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One major negative side effect of alcohol is that it can actually reduce your strength, endurance, aerobic capability, recovery time, ability to metabolize fat, and even your muscle growth!

Exercise and Alcohol Consumption

It's common for a lot of us that, on Friday afternoons, after we wrap up the week's work, w think about going out and relaxing and winding down by having a few drinks with friends to relax. After all, it is the start of the weekend!

Well, even though you may think you deserve that opportunity to go out and have a few drinks to unwind, there are some things that you should keep in mind.

Exercise After Alcohol Consumption

Let's say that tomorrow, or the next day, is going to be an exercise day. So, you figure that now you are exercising on a regular basis a few drinks of alcohol surely won't really hurt anything...right?

A cold beer, a daquiri, a Rusty Nail, or just a couple of glasses of wine, maybe.

What's the difference?

Well, my friend, before you decide to rush out to the local package store or bar, here are a few things that you should think about before you decide to go out to drink some alcohol with your "buds".

Results of Alcohol Consumption

Research has definitively proven that while even small amounts of alcohol will commonly increase muscular endurance and the strength, these types of benefits are very short lived. After 20 minutes or so, problems will begin to surface. All of the negative side effects which are associated with alcohol will easily outweigh any possible benefits that it can have.

Alcohol is Actually a Poison, and Alcohol Consumption is not Generally a Good Thing

Face the facts!

While it may feel good, and, may even have some health benefits, alcohol is a poison that can really harm your body if you aren't careful. A glass of wine a day is good for the heart, for example. However, once you get past that first glass, the benefits of alcohol consumption begin to decline, and the dark side begins to emerge.

The result of exercise after alcohol consumption, or even before, is more far reaching than simply interfering with one day's workout.

One major negative side effect of alcohol is that it can actually reduce your strength, endurance, aerobic capability, recovery time, ability to metabolize fat, and even your muscle growth!

Alcohol also has an effect on your nervous system and brain.

Long term alcohol use, usually over a few years, can eventually cause severe deterioration of your central nervous system. Even short term use, however, can cause a diminishing of nerve to muscle interaction result in a loss of strength, and other muscle action and control.

Now, no one wants to imply that you need to "dry out", and become a teetotaler, nor that the occasional cocktail party, or beer bust will destroy you. Even that old guy, what's his name? Oh yeah, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is from Austria where beer drinking is a part of daily life, has been known to down a few bottles of beer in his time. We are talking about somewhat regular use for the most part, but we are also talking about the short term effects on your health and fitness efforts as well.

No matter how you slice it, exercise and fitness do not go well with alcohol consumption.

To continue.....

Once alcohol reaches your blood cells, it can, and probably will, damage them to some extent. Inflammation of muscle cells is very common among alcohol users. Over periods of time, some of the cells damaged may eventually die, which will result in less functional muscle contraction. Drinking alcohol will also probably leave you with more muscle soreness after exercise. This means that it will take longer for muscle recovery after exercise.
Alcohol Consumption and Your Heart

Alcohol also has many different negative effects on your heart and circulatory system. When you drink any type of alcohol, you may begin to see an almost immediate reduction in your endurance.

Anytime you drink, your heat loss will increase due to the alcohol stimulating blood vessels to dilate. This loss in heat can cause your muscles to become quite cold, hence becoming slower and weaker during your muscle contractions.

Alcohol Consumption and Digestion

Drinking alcohol can also lead to digestive and nutritional problems as well. Alcohol causes a release of insulin that will increase the metabolism of glycogen, which spares fat and makes the loss of fat very hard. Due to alcohol interfering with the absorption of several key nutrients as well, you can also become anemic and experience B vitamin deficiency and other nutritional problems.

Alcohol Consumption and The Liver

Your liver is the organ that detoxifies alcohol. Because of this, the more you drink, the harder your liver has to work. The extra stress alcohol places on your liver can cause serious damage and even destroy some of your liver cells.

Alcohol Consumption and Hydration

Since alcohol is actually a diuretic, drinking large amounts can put a lot of stress on your kidneys, and other organs, as well. During diuretic action, hormones are secreted which can lead to heightened water retention and no one who exercises will want this to happen...especially if they are exercising to lose weight.

If you feel that you must drink alcohol anyway, and, personally speaking, I DO enjoy my glass of wine or bottle of beer, you should do it only in moderation and never drink before you exercise, as this will impair your balance, coordination, and also your judgment. Think about your health and how you exercise - and you may begin to look at things from a whole new prospective.

As with many other things in life, serious exercise and alcohol consumption do not go well together.

Click Here to learn about Alcohol and Body Fat.

While I do not normally recommend diets or dieting for weight loss, healthy eating is important to any health, fitness, or weight loss program. Click Here to learn more about Diet Direct.

P. S. If you want to learn more about why Diets Don't Work, please click here.

If you want to learn how to burn fat, a great book to read is Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle by Tom Venuto

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Exercise and Alcohol Consumption
Page Updated 10:06 AM Wednesday, July 5, 2023