Let’s say you’re having just 5 glasses of wine each week – and that you’re adhering to that strict 5 ounces. You’re going to gain a pound (or 3500 calories) in a little over a month. That’s just from drinking wine.
But that’s not the problem. If you’re working out regularly, chances are good that you’re burning off those calories and more. You shouldn’t be gaining any weight, right? So, you might have a second glass. So, you might start feeling hungry. So, you might have a little snack.
That alcohol-induced-snacking is what I call “the drunchies.” Your wine – whether it’s 125 or 250 or even more calories – just snowballed into a late-night meal. It’s probably not a kale salad, either. It’s potato chips, or cheese with crackers, or a cornucopia of fun things you wouldn’t want to tempt yourself with if you were completely sober. That glass of wine came with a lot of baggage.
A drink or two can be had without offsetting the hard work you’re putting in at the gym. It’s a combination of the wine with the snacks, treats, and goodies that accompany or follow that will negate your efforts.
It’s an industry-specific question that’s commonly posed: “What’s more important to you – your physique or your sanity?” Some pursue the physique and the health, but feel cheated of their vice that keeps them calm and collected. Some pursue the pleasure, and become discouraged by or disengaged with their work in the gym.
The truth of the matters is that you have to know yourself. If you need the drink, have it. If you need the snack, eat it. But if you want to reach your goals, you must have the presence of mind to balance your level of indulgence with an equal (or even greater) commitment to fitness.
Your sanity isn’t worth sacrificing your health. Your health isn’t worth sacrificing your sanity. But to achieve your fitness goals without eradicating the things that bring you pleasure, you must find a balance that is conducive to your own person – both mentally, and physically.