Ah, the holidays. It’s a time for being with loved ones, giving gifts, and…celebration after celebration with the indulgence of food, drinks and more drinks! There’s no avoidance of holiday parties and family gatherings, but how much is too much? Perhaps the most important question of all is this one: can getting buzzed during the holidays (or for that matter, any time of the year) keep you from getting ripped? Keep reading, and learn all about the price partying can play on your fitness goals.
If you’ve worked hard this past year to fulfill your New Year’s Resolutions from last year, and you’ve lost inches, improved your endurance and altogether transformed your mental and physical health, give yourself a pat on the back. That’s no easy feat, as you probably know from the trial and error lessons you’ve learned of your past. So, why take three steps back with too much champagne flutes, sugary cocktails and an overload of after dinner liqueurs? If you don’t moderate how much and how often you’re indulging in holiday drinks, over the coming weeks, your overall health and fitness progress will pay the price. Here’s why:
- Bring on the alcohol and bring on the fat. The first, and perhaps most influential reason to limit your alcohol consumption is added weight gain. As an overabundance of rich, carb heavy (and not to mention, mouth-watering) food is everywhere—from the break room to the grocery aisles—you have enough to resist, let alone the excess of your favorite alcoholic drinks.
So, as you pick and choose when and what to drink, remember this: your body has to work hard to metabolize all the alcohol you’ve just consumed—which means that it isn’t as easy for it to burn carbs and fat. Due to elevated levels of cortisol, your body will hold onto extra fat in your mid-section which can really wreak havoc for that flat tummy you’ve worked so hard to achieve.
- It’ll cause dehydration and poor sleeping patterns. The more you drink, the more dehydrated you become—and the harder it becomes to catch up on the right kind of fluids your body needs to repair, rebuild and metabolize properly. The more alcohol you drink, the greater chance you risk of reducing your ability to absorb important nutrients.
When it comes to high quality sleep (which is essential for a high impact workout and eliminating stress, which everyone could use during the holidays), getting buzzed is one of the quickest ways to experience poor sleeping patterns. If your sleep is disrupted due to alcohol, your ability to build muscle can be jeopardized by over 70 percent. Talk about a setback!
The holiday season is here, which means that there’s never been a more appropriate time to eat drink and be merry. Just be mindful of how much you’re drinking, so that you can ring in the New Year without comprising the healthy body you’ve worked so hard to achieve.