You deserve to let your hair down and go out with friends for the night. It’s time to take time for yourself! With some healthy alcoholic drinks in mind, you won’t even have to worry about it impacting your fitness goals. Simply use our guide, get out, and have fun!
The Alcohol Basics
Before your next night out on the town, consider some of these questions and use the answers to help guide you in making healthier drink choices! By knowing how alcohol affects you and your body, you are already putting yourself ahead of the game.
How Does Drinking Impact My Workouts?
If you’ve talked our Head Lion, Wayne, you may have heard him explain just how much drinking alcohol can impact your fitness goals. In short, after a night of drinking, it will take your body a few days to fully get rid of the alcohol in your system. This means that a few of your workouts following a night out will be dedicated to burning off the excess calories you’ve consumed by drinking. Once you’ve burned off those calories, your body will then be able to return to its normal caloric burn cycle that helps you lose and maintain weight or gain muscle.
Overall, drinking alcohol can:
- Decrease your body’s energy levels.
- Increase the risk of dehydration.
- Disrupt sleep patterns that are vital for muscle growth, which reduces muscle gain.
- Increase your heart rate, putting extra stress on your organs.
- Wreak havoc on your body’s hormone regulation, which can inhibit weight loss.
- Stimulate your body’s insulin production, which increases fat storage.
How Many Drinks Should I Have?
While there are a lot of reasons not to drink alcohol when it comes to sticking to your fitness goals, it doesn’t mean you should write off drinking forever! There are many advantages to drinking, too. Drinking alcohol is great for relieving stress and having fun. It’s also a large portion of most social events. It’s suggested that if you do drink, you should plan on having a couple drinks or less.
How Often Can I Drink?
To stick to your fitness goals, we suggest only consuming alcohol on the weekends. If you find that drinking on the weekends is giving you trouble when it comes to weight loss, try dedicating a single weekend each month for drinking. This will help limit your overall alcohol consumption.
The Ultimate List of Healthy Alcoholic Drinks
To assist you with making better choices while out at restaurants or bars, we’ve compiled a list of the most common spirits and the healthiest versions of them. Whether you feel like you need to be strict when it comes to drinks or you have some extra calories to spare, we have the options for you to choose from.
Healthy Vodka Drinks
- Vodka Seltzer with Lemon or Lime — The seltzer provides bubbly carbonation while the lemon or lime offers a zesty, citrus flavor!
- Vodka Cranberry — This is similar to the Vodka Seltzer, but you’re replacing seltzer with a juice. Despite having a few more calories in it, cranberry juice has a lot of antioxidant benefits and is great for improving heart health.
- Moscow Mule without Simple Syrup — You can’t go wrong with basic ingredients! This drink just has ginger beer, vodka, lime juice, and ice. By eliminating the simple syrup, the drink is only 80 calories (and still delicious!).
Healthy Gin Drinks
- Gin and Tonic — This is a classic go-to drink! It simply contains gin, lime juice, and a few ounces of tonic water.
- Traditional Martini — Regular martinis only use gin, vermouth, and olives. To minimize the calories, ask for a dry martini.
- Salty Dog — This drink only uses gin, grapefruit juice, and a rim of salt. To cut your sodium intake, ask for no salt!
Healthy Rum Drinks
- Malibu Rum and Diet Soda — This mixed drink is low in calories and delicious! It’ll have you dreaming of beaches and summer sunsets in no time.
- Mojito — Using white rum, mint, and lime juice, mojitos are both mouthwatering and refreshing. To reduce the amount of sugar used to make this drink, be sure to let your bartender know you’d like to use a low-calorie sweetener or forget the sweetener altogether.
- Dark and Stormy — This drink uses rum, ginger beer, and lime juice. It’s a light drink that packs a flavorful punch.
Healthy Whiskey Drinks
- Whiskey Highball — This drink contains whiskey, seltzer or ginger ale, and lemon slices, leaving you with a flavorful drink without the guilt.
- New York Sour — Combining rye whiskey, lemon juice, and red wine, this drink is the perfect alternative to a traditional whiskey sour. To keep it low calorie, make sure to let the bartender know you want to nix any simple syrup or added sugar.
- Whiskey Neat or On-The-Rocks — Can’t decide on what to drink? Simply ordering whiskey neat or on-the-rocks will help you minimize your caloric intake.
Healthy Tequila Drinks
- Tequila and Soda — Just like any other liquor, you can mix tequila with a low-calorie soda for a flavorful drink and a night of fun!
- Skinny Margarita — Most bars have already begun incorporating this popular drink into the menu. It’s simply a low-calorie twist on a classic margarita.
- La Paloma — This drink calls for tequila, lime juice, grapefruit juice, and a pinch of salt. It’s a festive, low-calorie drink that will give you that extra confidence boost.
Miscellaneous Healthy Alcoholic Drinks
- Champagne — It’s perfect for any celebratory occasion! The drier the champagne, the fewer calories it will be.
- Wine — Try a red wine such as pinot noir to get the benefits of antioxidants while decreasing your sugar intake. Not into reds? Opt for a dry white.
- Light Beer — While beer is not an ideal alcohol choice due to its high carb levels, light versions are okay to consume in moderation!
Tips for a Healthier Night Out
Combine some of the healthy alcohol choices above with our tips below to help minimize any impact alcohol may have on your fitness and health. By keeping these in mind, you’re sure to make healthier choices!
Before going out for the night, think about what drinks you’ll order and set a limit for yourself. Similar to meal prepping for the week, this will help to limit any impulsive decisions you make in-the-moment.
Use the 1:1 Rule
For every alcoholic drink you consume, grab a glass of water to drink. This will help you pace yourself and slow down your alcohol consumption. Plus, you’ll be able to rehydrate yourself in between each tasty cocktail.
Rehydrate Before Bed
In addition to drinking water in between each alcoholic drink, it’s also important to drink water before you go to sleep for the night. This will help your body recuperate after drinking so many diuretic fluids. It also helps if you’re prone to hangovers!