It’s true that there are many benefits to exercising, and there’s a reason why medical practitioners and sports trainers recommend it wholeheartedly to everyone. Scientifically, it’s a great way to be happy and energetic because it releases endorphins in the brain. In addition, it’s a great stress buster, uplifts your mood, allows you to relax, improves your sleep, and keeps you fit. And while exercise is a must for people of all ages and sizes, it might not be a miracle worker against the dreadful effects of alcohol.
You cannot make alcohol disappear with sweat
While it’s not okay to stay all day in bed while hungover, and you definitely need to get moving to avoid muscle wastage, exercise, unfortunately, is not going to make your hangover disappear. It won’t help metabolize the ethanol in your blood any faster, nor would it help make the symptoms less agonizing.
All you can do is wait for the substance to be slowly excreted via the natural processes of the body. And you should always remember that no matter how long it takes, your liver is something you can rely on every time to make your hangover go away.
Why strenuous exercise can cause more harm than good while hungover
If you try to overexert yourself while you have a hangover, you can experience several negative effects.
1. You can get dehydrated
Alcohol is already a dehydrator, meaning that it rids fluids from your body. It does this by producing more urine. This effect, combined with excessive sweating after working out, can have disastrous consequences if you don’t take the time to efficiently replace the fluids lost. In addition, more dehydration than already experienced can make your hangover symptoms worse.
So, before exercising, check the color of your urine. A darker yellow color means that your body lacks water. However, if it is more towards the paler side, go out for a walk or a jog, but remember to take a bottle of water with you.
2. You can get fatigued
You’re probably already fatigued when hungover, and readying yourself for an exercise might feel like getting ready to run a marathon. If you feel too lethargic or are not in a position to get out of bed, it’s probably best to let the idea go. Alcohol stresses the body significantly by turning into a toxic product called acetaldehyde. If you force yourself to exercise on top of that, you can end up feeling more stressed and horrible.
3. You can be prone to injury
Think about it, with dehydration and a possible lack of sleep; your cognitive ability has probably been reduced significantly. If you can’t think or reason properly, figuring out your exercise regimen will be like trying to find a lost treasure. It’s one thing to start exercising but a completely different thing to keep at it. In the worst case, you might lose your balance or trip, which can result in an injury.
Work out but don’t overdo it
If you’re a regular drinker and have experienced many episodes of a hangover, you may be aware of how your body reacts to it and the average amount of time you need to recover. You can use this knowledge to fine-tune your exercising ritual so that the two can pair up well together. Here are a few ways you can make exercises work in your favor while you are under the weather:
1. Do gentle exercises
There are many gentle exercises such as yoga, cycling, strolling, stretches, cooking, or even gardening that you can do to help you get rid of any drowsiness that you might be feeling. For many of these exercises, you won’t have to leave your house. You can either search for these on the internet or try to invent your own.
2. Take a friend along with you
Exercising alone isn’t usually fun for a lot of people, and they end up feeling more tired, especially if they are hungover. Friends or family can make the whole experience better since they entertain and have meaningful conversations that can lighten up the otherwise stressful and annoying day. In addition, if you have someone with you, they can keep an eye on how well you are doing and whether you need to take a rest.
3. Keep your gym routine lightweight
There’s no need to try to beat a world heavyweight champion. If you’re thinking of hitting the gym and your hangover is making you feel like crap, make sure you keep your routine as light as possible. When you don’t feel the draining effects of a hangover anymore, you can start lifting heavier weights.
4. Be sensible
The key to working out while you are hungover is being realistic. You need to take as many breaks as possible between workouts so that your body doesn’t get fatigued. Overworking yourself is never a good idea because it can have a negative impact on your health. By keeping everything simple and having a good time in the process, you’ll not only enjoy your workout, but you might also forget about your hangover.
Exercise is great for an individual, but it sadly won’t cure your hangover. That being said, you can use it to your advantage because moving your body helps your muscles, keeps you alert and focused, and might help to reduce some of the lethargy that accompanies most hangovers.
As long as you are careful about which exercises you choose to do and how you spend your day, you won’t end up draining yourself and will feel great by the end of it. However, always remember to stay hydrated and eat something to provide your body with the necessary nutrients.
I am a passionate beer connoisseur with a deep appreciation for the art and science of brewing. With years of experience tasting and evaluating various beers, I love to share my opinions and insights with others and I am always eager to engage in lively discussions about my favorite beverage.