Alcohol and fitness are not really two things which go well together. Many people ask me how bad alcohol is and how much they can drink while still improving their bodies?! Alcohol consumption relating to fitness is generally not an area discussed. You will often see fitness fanatics stay home while their friends go out drinking to ‘save the gains‘… They seem to think having a few drinks will cause their muscles to fall off and give them a beer gut. This is really a load of crap..
People talk about the work/life balance and getting it right. People also should think about the fitness/life balance and getting that right. Yes drinking may not be optimal for the best physique. But when your old and frail looking back at your life. Do you want to be the person who stayed home and got an awesome body?!! Im going to explain simply how to keep a great body while being able to enjoy alcohol.
Alcohol has about 5.6 calories per gram. It is liquid form which does not fill you up meaning your left hungry. This is why you get in from a night out and eat a whole pizza and a bar of chocolate….
Alcohol effects testosterone levels very slightly after binge drinking, although not enough to take any negative effect on the body. Studies show that even drinking alcohol post workout won’t reduce muscle strength and gains. Alcohol will not increase muscle protein synthesis (using muscle as energy).. Which means your muscle will stay totally intact while doing a bar crawl.
Alcohol its self is not fattening. It cannot be stored as fat in the body. However. When consumed, it takes priority so fat oxidization from the body cells (using fat as energy) will not happen. It is the sugary crap in alcoholic drinks along with the consumption of drunk eating which will cause fat gain.
So.. How do you drink while preventing fat gains…
- For that day, reduce fat and carb intake to allow for extra calories from the alcohol which will be consumed
- Keep protein levels high to prevent muscle protein synthesis
- Have sensible beverages.. a beer will have 12g of carbs in it, while cocktails will range between 10-20g of carbs. Stick to dry white wines which contain <1g of carbs and spirits (mixed with soda or diet drinks) contain almost no carbs.
- Limit big nights out to once a week due to the increased risk of disease caused by alcohol…. We want to be happy and healthy. Not diseased alcoholics!
- Finally.. Don’t come home and eat the whole fridge. This will cause fat gain!
Now.. Don’t use this an excuse to go out and get shit faced every weekend because thats not healthy.I strongly believe in everything in moderation. So what if you get absolutely smashed every once in a while. So what if you eat a pizza to your self occasionally… Having one healthy day will not make you slim and healthy. One day of drinking or one day of eating crap (make sure they are on separate days) 😀 will not make you fat and unhealthy. Don’t be a square meat head with no social life because thats not something to be proud of!
Following up from my last high carb post for re-feed days. This is a delicious, high protein, low fat (almost no fat) recipe using my faveeee veggie. PUMPKIN:)
Pumpkin Protein Cake
- 75g protein powder (I used vanilla flavor)
- 4 egg whites (for lower fat) OR 2 whole eggs
- 300g pumpkin puree OR roasted/microwaved pumpkin
- 1tsp baking powder
- 150g oat bran OR oat flour
- 100ml unsweetened almond milk
Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees and line a cake tin with a little coconut oil. Put all ingredients in a mixer/blender and mix until a smooth consistence is reached. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a knife comes out the cake clean. (everyones oven seems to cook faster than my shitty oven)
For extra texture, try adding nuts, seeds of cacao nibs to the mix after blending 🙂