5 Stay-Fit Tips for Social Drinkers
I did it again. I opened my big mouth (digitally via email and blog that is) and I stated that ALCOHOL DOES NOT MAKE YOU FAT. Naturally, there was a backlash and a bunch of you think I’m full of [INSERT BAD WORD HERE].
So, now I’m going to give you some tips to use in your life to prove it.
I explained how chemistry proves I’m right (click here to revisit), as alcohol turns into acetate which cannot be stored as fat directly.
However, my BOLD statement is not quite the way we experience life, is it? We go on a drinking tear and we gain weight. Would you agree? We take a little booze-break and we deflate, no? I can certainly relate.
Remember that I also qualified my statement by saying that 3 things can indirectly make alcohol fatten us up:
- Poor Dietary Choices – when drinking a lot I care nothing about proper nutrition, no one does
- Hormone Disruption – days of disrupting hormones will stop fat-burning and make you store a lot of water in the wrong places (aka bloating)
- Liver Damage – years of over-drinking will cause your liver to stop burning fats and using sugar/fat for energy properly
Well, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are things we can do about it. And my 5 tips will help you battle the above 3 factors to stay lean while drinking socially. You might even lose weight by drinking. What the what? (Recent studies show beer is a far better choice than diet soda, milk or juice)
Remember that the whole concept behind Intox-Detox is BALANCE; it’s also the reason why the logo folds back in on itself like a yin yang symbol. It’s deep!
We’re not children, so I won’t treat you like one… If you are a child then you probably shouldn’t be drinking alcohol at all. Point is that if you do something fun that you love, like drinking wine, beer or cocktails for example, you are probably going to have to do something that isn’t fun to make up for it and re-establish balance.
Kind of like working and shopping. Or having children and changing diapers. Paying for dinner and sex. Partying and cleaning up. You get the point.
Do these 5 things and you will be way ahead of the game…
5 TIPS FOR STAYING LEAN WITHOUT GIVING UP BOOZE
TAKE PLANNED BREAKS
I deeply believe that moderate social drinking is not only okay, it’s actually essential. There must be a reason why almost every human culture on the planet has done it in one way or another for millennia. Not to mention, you can’t live forever no matter what you do, so you might as well have fun.
Science is constantly finding out that wine, tequila, beer, whiskey and other spirits have health benefits, when used properly. Alcohol is one of the oldest medicines on the planet. It goes without saying that medicine and drugs must be respected and treated with caution. Alcohol can also be deadly. Again with the balance. Just don’t throw the baby out with the fire water!
All that said, drinking is not for everyone. Addiction is real and it’s a disease beyond the scope of what we are doing at Intox-Detox. If you have a problem, get help from someone qualified to handle it.
Also, there is no harm in taking a break from alcohol, even abstaining completely for certain periods of time. A couple ways to use this sage advice from someone who has been around the block as a fitness and alcohol enthusiast:
- Don’t drink more than 2 days in a row. Take 24 hours off. This gives your hormones time to reset (more on that coming in other tips)
- If the pounds are adding up, just take a break for a week. Or keep consumption to 1-2 drinks per outing and no more.
- Once a year, consider taking a whole month off. It will do wonders for your energy, overall health and giving your liver a chance to do what it does best, detox and regenerate.
Bottom Line: Take a break from drink once in a while. Alcohol will always be there when you come back
WORKOUT (MY WAY)
Remember how I said alcohol disrupts fat-burning and anti-aging hormones like HGH (human growth hormone), DHEA, Estrogen and Testosterone…? Well, nothing will reset your fat-burning hormones better than the combination of resistance training and cardio, with the right doses and execution.
Here’s where my expertise comes in. It’s beyond the scope of this article, but I will eventually share exact workout plans and how to do them.
Broad strokes – 30 to 60 minutes at least 3 times per week, combining semi-intense cardiovascular training with resistance training. You don’t have to get crazy or do Crossfit or become a Power Lifter. You also don’t have to start running marathons. Those are what I would call EXTREMES; do them if they are life goals and make you happy, but you don’t have to go nuts to get real results.
Also, keep in mind that when I say “intense”, this will vary widely depending on age, sex, current fitness level and experience. The workouts I recommend are so fulfilling and brief that you will want to do more. You won’t feel like you’re doing enough, but you are. And you may have to increase intensity if you want to continue improving, rather than just maintaining.
Workout intensity is like asking how many beers someone should have. It’s personal. And we all have rights and freedoms, so don’t tell anyone else what they should do with their life. K?
Bottom Line: The RIGHT workout, adapted to your needs will help you stay fit, youthful and strong in mind, body and spirit.
You will see a lot of articles about how working out is pointless; that it’s all about diet. This is partially true, especially for cardio. It’s just so inefficient for burning fat. You run on the treadmill for 30 minutes and you might burn off a bagel, depending on intensity.
When you combine resistance training and cardio (the way I recommend) you get synergy. If you add fasting to the equation, it’s like gasoline on the fire.
I know what you’re thinking… Fasting is weird or dangerous or too hard or whatever your first impression might be. But it’s none of the above.
It’s also the single best way to burn calories. Think about it – you could run on a treadmill for 6 hours or you could just take some time off from eating. Your heart and muscles won’t benefit the same way as they do from the cardio, but that’s why I recommend small doses.
One fast can easily burn thousands of calories with far less effort. And it also does wonders for your overall health on so many fronts. Everything useful that I know about fasting came from Brad Pilon’s book “Eat Stop Eat”.
The exact details are too specific for this, but I will lay out a few guidelines:
- I say “practice” fasting because you don’t have to perfect at it to get great results
- My typical fast is 24 hours, once per week. That’s it. I practice the art of fasting, but I don’t always succeed. Sometimes I only make it 16 or 20 hours. But think about that. All the calories burnt during that time add up to far more than running aimlessly (literally) on a treadmill for hours
- That’s where we get into being an adult and knowing that nothing is for free. You can make up for your indiscretions by COMPENSATING (word of the day, more coming…) with a brief fast
- Blueprint = Eat a large, fulfilling meal (not binging) at 2 or 3 pm and don’t eat again until the same time the next day. If you fall short, it’s okay. Just try to go a little longer than you did the last time
- There are also some great hacks, tips and tricks that I use to avoid hunger and stay energized. Hint: some foods contain almost no calories but crush your hunger.
- DRINK PLENTY OF WATER. This is the time for your diet drinks if you’re addicted to them.
- Also, obviously no alcohol during fasts; it’s a great time to take that break mentioned above.
Humans have been fasting for as long as we have been drinking alcohol. Our bodies are built for it. It’s the reason we store fat in the first place. There was a time when our pantries were not overflowing with goodies thanks to modern farming and industry.
We can go only a few days without water, but almost a month without food, depending on how full your body’s “pantry” is, your fat stores. It’s also great “practice” for you PREPPERS getting ready for the Zombie Apocalypse. If you had to suck it up, go without food for a few days and escape a natural disaster, could you do it? Or would you wilt like a daisy and just give up and die. Humans always adapt. You are stronger than you think you are.
Bottom Line: Fasting is powerful for healing damage, cutting calories quickly to lose weight, balancing fat-burning hormones and detoxifying the liver and other organs.
One of the best diet and life tips I could ever give is the ART OF DELAYING SATISFACTION. We always have impulses in life; it’s one of the things that makes us human. But if we give into every one, well we’d probably end up fat, unhappy and/or in prison, maybe all of the above.
I’d go so far as to say that we should never outright FORBID ourselves from doing anything (except maybe betraying ones we love, doing hard street drugs and violating humanity via murder, slavery etc…).
At the very least delay your satisfaction a little, take a walk and think it over first. As soon as you forbid yourself to do something, the cookie jar effect takes hold. It becomes irresistible and you basically set yourself up for failure.
Example: “I will not eat pizza this weekend” – What do you think happens when you have a few beers and someone orders pizza? You eat half the damn thing. There is a better way. The way I see it, you have two choices…
Rules for Delaying Satisfaction:
- COMPENSATE: If you do it, do it – Do it now and enjoy it. Have that pizza, cookie, cake or whatever, but figure out right then and there what you are going to do to compensate and when. For example, I’m having this pizza and beer now, but I’m going to go to the gym tomorrow. Then you actually have to go, which is where most of us go wrong. So I’d much rather you do this: go to the gym first, then hit the pizza and beer party. It’s a simple, but powerful tool for motivation, using one of the most powerful human emotions: GUILT.
- MAKE A DATE: If you don’t do it, that’s cool, don’t do it. But right then and there, set a date and time for when you will. Our minds are amazingly adept at waiting for something that we know is coming at a specific time and place. Most of us flounder when we promise to have that pizza “sometime”. If it’s Friday and you tell yourself you will have it at lunch on Saturday, you know it’s coming and you can look forward to it (but don’t obsess, in that case it’s better to just do it now and compensate). Maybe even motivate yourself to take it easy Friday night and make a trip to the gym. The same goes with drinking alcohol.
Bottom Line: Compensate to empower life strategies to achieve balance.
I love supplements! Is that any surprise? I devoted my life to creating a hangover supplement based on science that would really work. Right out of college I joined the professional world as an Assistant Manager at the Vitamins Shoppe.
However, my original love for supplements came from my fitness and soccer background. Through much trial and error, I spent over a decade sifting through the ones that work and the ones that do not. I also wrote thousands of articles on Livestrong.com and other sites on the subject.
It will come as no surprise to you that the list of things that REALLY WORK is miniscule. That’s why Intox-Detox is so gosh-darned AMAZING. The supplement industry continues to grow and grow by billions of dollars each year (and I’d like my share right about now!), but they have a DARK SECRET.
There is a lot of marketing hype masquerading as science, also beyond the scope of this article, which is too-long already!
I can’t get into exactly how I take these supplements, but these are my favorite for helping to achieve results and “COMPENSATE” for my indiscretions, alcohol-related and otherwise.
- Greens powder (Organifi/Athletic Greens)
- Protein powder/Shakes/Bars (Orgain/Quest/Premier Protein)
- Fish oil (Life Extension)
- Milk thistle/Liver detox formulas (for maintenance, Dr. Venessa’s Liver Clean)
- Intox-Detox (Mine!)
- Apple cider vinegar (Braggs)
- BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids, Scivation Xtend)
- Creatine (Body Tech, the Vitamin Shoppe brand)
- Coffee (Bulletproof style)
***Please show them all some love by liking their Facebook pages and purchasing their awesome products. It takes one to know one and I trust these companies
Bottom Line: Use supplements backed by real science to improve upon all the other tips.
So, there you go. A long but thorough introduction to how you can enjoy social drinking while staying fit or even losing body fat. Next time I’ll share my 5 Best Diet-Friendly Drinks and give you some recipes.
Why am I not charging for this information? Eventually, I will. For now, you can get my best tips for free by coming back to read more and by signing up for our Better Tomorrow Club Basic here…
At the very least, even if you never follow a single tip I give, you can take Intox-Detox to help protect your liver, your biggest organ (besides your skin, which only wins due to surface area). Your liver is also critical for fat-burning, so if it’s all jacked up, you can’t possibly stay fit. Not to mention that it’s mighty hard to wake up and get motivated to hit the gym or eat right when you’re HUNGOVER.
Current customers can save some bucks (35% of them) with coupon code hangoverssuck35 here…
Stay fit and #LIVERSTRONG!