Where Spirits Meet Sports
Sally Perkins considers the effect of adding alcohol to your training routine.
For all too many people, maintaining an active lifestyle can be a challenge. Though thousands across the UK decided to head down to the gym and take out membership this past January, almost 22% stop their routine after just 24 weeks, while nearly half will give up by December.
However, a new trend promises to shake up the work-out world by combining sports with alcohol. Companies around the world are capitalising on this niche market, with beer maker Michelob rebranding itself as the beer for an active lifestyle. At the same time, UK fitness brands 1Rebel and Core Collective now offer patrons a choice of alcoholic beverages in their gyms.
Adding alcohol to your workout routine does more than making the gym more entertaining. There are a whole host of reasons to exercise with a glass of beer or wine in hand. Alcohol can help to enhance your workout from every angle, from improving your performance to providing motivation.
Boost Your Performance
While drinking too much alcohol can be detrimental to your workout performance and your overall health, in moderation, beer and wine can have a positive effect. Studies have found that resveratrol, a compound in the production of red wine, can mimic the effects of exercise in inactive people and enhance exercise training and performance.
Drinking alcohol also releases endorphins which, when combined with the endorphins from working out, creates a strong reward effect for our brain. Not only does this leave you feeling refreshed and relaxed after a good workout, but it also keeps you coming back for more, reducing the chances of your giving up your new routine. In essence, rewarding yourself with a drink after exercising chemically trains your brain to enjoy working out.
Create a Sense of Community
Exercising does not necessarily have to be a solitary experience. Working out with or alongside others can not only make working out more entertaining but also give you a greater sense of accountability, motivating you to keep up your routine year-round. Combining alcohol with exercise turns it into a more social affair, giving people an excuse to interact and open up. It can be much easier to meet other gym patrons over a glass of wine.
A drink with friends after a workout can also be a great motivator for those who find themselves having trouble sticking to a routine. Knowing that you get to relax and knock back a beer with your fellow gym patrons can give you just the push that you need to finish your workout and come back for more the next day.
While it may seem too right to be true, combining your workout with alcohol can make your routine more fun and more effective. Not only does a glass or two of wine offer motivation, but it can also bring you closer to other gym members and even boost your performance. As with everything, though, it is essential to remember to consume beer and wine in moderation. While a small amount of alcohol can improve your workout, drinking too much could put you or other gym-goers at risk.
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About the Author
Sally Perkins is a professional freelance writer with many years' experience across many different areas. She made a move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, Sally enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family, and travelling as much as possible.