Losing Fat and Drinking Beer

Yesterday, I made a Sunday morning post on Facebook that read:

Put Thursday’s beer carbs … to good use at the gym this morning; lost weight, (re)gained a little strength!

I was at a charity party where I had four beers, a burger, and some chips. To most people, this would mean a beaten down panic button on their weight loss journey. Fear not, I’ve done the math!

Normally I’d be eating around 550 hundred calories for dinner on a Thursday. Instead, we have:

Four beers – 640 cal
Burger – 500 cal
Chips – 150 cal
Total – 1290 cal

Wait a minute, didn’t you say it’s all fine? Why yes, it is! Since January, I’ve averaged a loss of 0.7 lbs per week. So the math is:

0.7 x 3500 = 2450 (deficit)
2450 – 1290 = 1160 (remaining deficit)

This equates to almost exactly a third of a pound lost. My weekly delta ended up being 0.5 lbs down, which lines up perfectly with my relatively consistent diet and exercise. Overall it balances out due to having more energy from the carbs to burn at the gym. While I don’t recommend going out and getting drunk all the time (bad for your liver, bad for your gains), I’ve clearly demonstrated that doing so on occasion it won’t impact your weight loss goals all that much. As humans we need balance in life and when you’re trying to lose fat over a long time it’s nice to take a break now and then, knowing all the hard work won’t go to waste over one night.

We can take our new-found knowledge a little step further, using scientific studies as nutritional justification. On a typical Sunday afternoon during a cut, I’ll have half a cup of rice with my chicken and veggies for dinner. That rice is about 360 calories. Yes, that’s right, if I skip the rice I can fit in a lager and still be short 200 calories.


Disclaimer: excessive consumption of beer is known to slow metabolism, lower testosterone, cause severe dehydration, and in extreme cases death. Count alcohol towards your carbs. Drink responsibly.

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