Some triathletes avoid alcohol entirely. Some don’t. I’m one of the latter.
The important question is whether drinking alcohol has a negative effect on athletic performance. The “common sense” answer would be yes it does effect athletic performance. Here’s some reasons why someone might say that:
- Alcohol is a depressant, limits one’s motivation to exercise
- Alcohol is a diuretic, leaving you dehydrated
- Alcohol impairs your body’s ability to regulate temperature and balance (even the day after)
- Slows your body’s recovery process
- And so, on
But what about the positive results to drinking alcohol. Here’s a list of some benefits to drinking:
- Its fun, who doesn’t love throwing a few back on the weekend with friends
- Health benefits (http://health.yahoo.net/experts/dayinhealth/10-surprising-health-benefits-beer)
- Reduces stress (after a long week of work and training, sometimes all you need is a beer)
Now I am not saying that drinking alcohol is going to make you a strong, faster triathlete, but it’s always not going to have a detrimental affect on your training. I saw an interview with some of the pro triathletes leading up to the Ironman Championships in Kona and a few of them mentioned they have a glass or 2 of wine with dinner every night.
For my training, I plan on drinking alcohol up to a month or so before my A-race (Ironman Wisconsin). I’ve done this with other races previously and I’ll admit, my body felt more fresh and “clean”. Be smart about it and now what your body can handle.
So raise your glass and here’s to another week of training. Cheers!
My training: The above post was inspired by my Saturday night. A group of co-workers went out and had a good time a local German bar (Das Boot!) Week 7 was the highest volume of training yet. I put in 7 hours on the bike. We had 2 group rides this week where we focused on climbing, trying to simulate hills, which Ironman Wisconsin has plenty of. During the ride we talked about sitting/standing while you’re climbing hills. I’ve always felt more comfortable and faster while standing up, however this can result in using a lot of additional support muscles in your legs that can come back and hurt you in the run.
After my Thursday spin I decided to play soccer (I should have stretched). My legs were sore for most of Friday and Saturday. I worked a lot of muscles that I haven’t used in awhile from shooting and sprinting up and down the field. Yoga was rough being that sore. Let’s just say I won’t plan on playing soccer very often during my training the next couple of months. On to recovery week!
Week totals: 14.50 hours
- Swimming: 3 hours
- Biking: 7 hours
- Running: 2.75 hours
- Core/Lifting: 1.5
- Yoga: 30 minutes
Tuesday: 1.75 hour spin: High cadence ride and 8 x :45 sec power intervals. 1 hour run, smooth (8.5 miles) + Core
Wednesday: 1.5 hour spin. 45 minute swim (drill focus) + Lift
Thursday: Group spin at Endurance House East. We did some hill simulations + Core
Friday: 45 minute run during lunch (2 x 10 min speed intervals). 45 minute swim (power intervals with paddles) + Lift (Went to a Gary Allan concert in Milwaukee)
Saturday: 1.75 hour spin. Hill focus again. 3 x 10:00 (increase resistance every 2 mins) + Yoga
Sunday: 1.5 hour swim (4 x 500 main set). 1 hour run.
Favorite workout of the week: The group rides this week. Both days we focused on hills and climbing.
Least favorite workout of the week: Sunday run. My legs were overly sore from the 2 group rides as well as an indoor soccer game on Thursday.
Advice of the week: If it is important enough to you, you will find a way. If it is not, you will find an excuse
Thing I’m looking forward to next week: Recovery week. Resting my legs. Is it spring yet?