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What to do When You’re Nursing a Hangover and Yourself through Monday

We’ve all been there. The weekend comes and you forget all about your fitness goals and just fly off the handle. You eat cookies, pizza (whatever junk food you love) and perhaps do just a few too many twelve ounce curls. Now it’s the morning after and you wake up feeling generally terrible. Normally when this happens (college, anyone?) you immediately blame alcohol, but there is more to it than that. You can get a food hang over, too. Too much salt, fried foods, sugar, you know all the things we know not to eat, all cause your body to feel less than its usual, spunky self. But, don’t just hit snooze, curl up in your bed, and sleep it away. By taking a few simple steps, you can feel better, be more productive, and start your week off on the right foot.

You drank too much. Maybe Sunday Funday took on a literal meaning for you this week. Hey, who can blame you, football is practically made for parties with friends and drinking a few too many beers. But Monday morning is still going to come, and so is Monday’s CrossFit workout. The number one best thing you can do is drink water, and a lot of it. Alcohol causes dehydration,  and that is the number one cause of your morning-after headache. While alcohol also causes stomach pains, getting rid of your headache is a great first step to feeling better. Along with a couple big glasses of water to rehydrate you and get you ready for the day, some healthy carbohydrates, along with protein, make for a healing breakfast. When you drink, your blood sugar actually drops to very low levels, and having some healthy carbs such as oatmeal can bring your blood sugar back to normal levels, which makes you feel better. That bowl of oats will also help fuel your CrossFit WOD later.

You ate wayyyy too many pieces of pizza. Here is the deal with pizza, at least the kind of pizza we love here in the states. It is a highly caloric piece of food which is high in fat, high in salt, and low in overall nutrient density. Basically, it is delicious, easy to eat too much of, and does a number on your digestive system. Strangely enough, experts say water is your number one choice for fatty, salty foods, as well. I think we are seeing a common theme here. Water not only hydrates your body, but it also helps your digestive track work through the number you just did on it when you ate pizza late at night in  a ill-fated attempt to save yourself from that hangover you’re nursing. That didn’t go quite as you imagined, huh? While there is disagreement on this topic, mint flavored gum can help you feel better, although it actually isn’t helping. In my opinion, getting in an easy sweat session is the best way to feel fresh again after eating too much.

That brownie (or ice cream, or cake, or candy) called your name and you answered. I have a confession. My sweet tooth gets out of hand. Most times, I’m able to say no and just choose not to have it, but there are times when I’m just in the mood for a dessert and it happens. This is especially normal during the holidays, as sharing dessert with your family and friends is really tied into the tradition. Here is my number one piece of advice: just stop eating. You’ve had your dessert, enjoy it, and then be done. The next morning is when you should address it, if you’ve gone overboard. More food on top of all those sweets normally doesn’t feel great. However, waking up and getting yourself resettled with a healthy, protein and fiber based breakfast such as a vegetable omelet is going to give you a needed dose of nutrients, as well as stabilize your blood sugar and get you all set for your week ahead.

After falling off the rails, it is really important to simply get back into your routine. Don’t go on  a 3 day juice cleanse. Don’t drink just water for an entire day in an attempt to lose weight you may have put on. Just get back into your healthy habits. Choose a protein heavy breakfast along with some whole grains. Hit up your CrossFit box and struggle through the WOD. And don’t beat yourself up, that only makes your drink/food hangover worse. It was fun while you did it, and now it’s fun to be healthy again!

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