T Nation

Drinking on Training Days?


This may seem like a stupid question, but I'd rather ask than remain in the dark. Now, I know most people on this site aren't prohibitionists, and have probably knocked back a few in their day. I know from reading that some of the big guys do. That being said, what is the effect that drinking booze has on a training day?

Both Thursday and Friday are training days for me, but they are also big party days. If I drink on either of those nights am I just wasting the previous training sessions? Should I keep it to days that aren't training days? Or am I just thinking too much?


Everything in moderation. Are you getting hung over, getting enough nutrition during the day before drinking, beating your log book etc. These are the important questions. I drink on the weekends but never get hung over, never stay up past midnight, I track my diet and always destroy my log book.


I think your'e going to get a mixed bag of reviews and I will give you one as well. I know a lot of kids in college who could make gains, stay lean, eat whatever they wanted, and get wasted multiple nights during the week.

I also know from personal experience, and as a lover of good beer and good times, that getting lean and making significant gains are significantly influenced by the amount of alcohol I consume. So, focus on what is your most important goal! I can't drink and expect a great training session the next day and I also will easily overeat because of lowered inhibition when I drink.

So, take it for what it is. Define your goals and put an emphasis on reaching them, whatever they may be.



Booze totally fucks up your training day. I had a bit to drink at a Sunday BBQ a few weeks ago and my Monday training was totally shit. Massive loss of strength and just felt shitty. I'll never do it again.



Start drinking on Fridays.
If satisfied with progress in gym, start drinking on Thursday and Friday.
If satisfied with progress in gym, continue drinking on Thursday and Friday.
Else don't drink on Thursday.
Else don't drink.

Find the balance, since this is an individual thing.


All depends on your goals.

Which is more important to you, the party or adding muscle?


Partying with my muscle; at the gym!

see what I did there?

my goals used to be drinking/partying....now that i'm out of college, and in 'the real world' and have a girl....drinking doesn't seem to be as important. but being big and strong sure is!

Figure your real goals out man!


Search for Alan Aragon's article on alcohol and training. I used to think if you wanted to gain muscle you couldn't touch the sauce. Now I have a couple beers or a glass of wine if I feel like it after a hard workout.


Maybe he wants a different kind of answer. Like, I think I read somewhere that regularly consuming a lot of alcohol raises your cortisol levels. I'm sure someone else here can back me up/refute this.


Moderation, but i would NEVER drink before a training day or after a workout. Save it for the night before your day off. Don't go overboard and make sure you still get to bed at a decent time.


I don't drink that often (once every week or two), but when I do drink, my workout the following day is nearly always one of my best.

Maybe it's because I usually only drink on the weekend and my body has been resting during that time, not sure. I do know that drinking hasn't hurt my lifts at all.


I've read that alcohol increases estrogen and decreases test to a pretty signifigant degree. This is thought to stimulate sex hormone binding globulin to make up for the lack of test, thus the sexual feelings alcohol often causes. One study found that calories from alcohol are always stored in the midsection and have a wasting effect on the muscles of the quads hams and glutes for some reason. Another study found that cortisol rose 61% higher when alcohol was consumed after a workout.

That being said, I drink occasionally and notice little difference in gains. When I used to drink heavily everyday, I had very minor gains. As someone else said, moderation is key, and it's best to avoid on workout days and pre workout days if possible.


I agree. I currently save my drinking for saturday night only. I love drinking. I used to drink just about every night, but it really does come down to goals. Right now my fitness goals are more important to me than my love for the booze.


Just my personal opinion but you should enjoy your life,

If you like a drink, have one,

It's all time you can't get back.

Just decide what makes you more happy.


Can anyone clarify exactly what they mean by 'drinking'? Are we talking going out and having multiple drinks/generally partying or just having one? I've read up on alcohol's effects on metabolism, and fat loss and have generally abstained but I'd be lying if I said that I didn't occasionally want to have a drink after a long day. Up until now I've allowed it to count for my weekly 'cheat meal.'


It's going to affect it one way or another. As I get older, if I have four or five beers on a Thursday night I feel like shit for my workout on Friday. The difference is noticeable... more tired, slower hands, shit reflexes, and just off kilter.

Generally though I take it easy during the week, so going out Fri and Sat. night doesn't affect my training since I take it easy on the weekend.


When I say drinking, I mean drinking. It doesn't mean fuck a fat chick blackout drunk, but it does mean that I probably (definitely) couldn't pass a sobriety test.


I'm definately a light drinker and have one to two beers tops when i do drink, unless it's a special occasion, and i've never really been affected by it.


By drinking I mean getting a good buzz, not fall down puking drunk. Alot of those tests on alcohol effects were done on people who had 10 drinks in an hour, that is an OBSCENE amount of alcohol for such a short time period.


since I stopped drinking my gains improved rapidly - I didn't gain anything for one year, because I drank a bottle of vodka with two friends every weekend.
I find that other drugs (if not used often and/or excessively) like weed don't have such detrimental effects on building muscle