Hungover? Tips to Keep in Mind Before Sweating out Last Night’s Alcohol

A man is lying in bed with headache

Headache, nausea, dizziness and a rapid heartbeat: are you feeling the effects of last night’s party and all the alcohol you drank? 😉 Of course, the best hangover tip is to avoid getting one in the first place. But what can you do once you have one?

In fact, a light workout the next morning can help ease or even get rid of the unpleasant side effects of a hangover. You should keep the following three tips in mind:

1. Replace lost fluids and minerals

The alcohol you consumed has robbed your body of important fluids and minerals. Since your body requires additional fluids when you exercise to cool itself and maintain vital metabolic processes, and your muscles and cardiovascular system rely on essential minerals to function properly, you should fill up your stores before starting to work out. Ideally, you should remember to supply your body with some minerals before going to bed in the form of fruit, water or magnesium, calcium and potassium tablets. If you happen to forget, then you should simply start your day off by drinking a lot of water, tea or a glass of warm lemon water with ginger to replace the fluids and minerals lost the night before.

A woman is sitting in bed with a coffee with a hangover

2. Get your circulation going

The detox process puts a lot of strain on your circulatory system and often makes exercising in the morning unthinkable. Still, you should try to get your blood pumping. One good way is to take a lukewarm or cold shower to stimulate blood circulation. Contrast showers (alternating between hot and cold water) can also work wonders. Afterwards, your body is up to speed, and you won’t overtax your system by starting out cold.

3. Lace up your running shoes and go

Of course, a night on the town with too much alcohol is not the ideal starting point for a new personal best. A short and easy run in the morning to sweat out the alcohol, however, can speed up the detox process and help your body recover more quickly.
Be careful: Exercise activates your metabolism, which means that it will flood your system with the toxins contained in alcohol. In the short run, this can make your hangover worse. However, stimulating your circulation and getting some fresh air are good for your overall well-being.

Can I still work on improving my performance when I’m hungover? Unfortunately, the answer is no. Under these conditions, it’s almost impossible to achieve any training effect or performance gains. Your body is too busy metabolizing the alcohol you consumed the night before.

A man is running outside

What is a hangover exactly?

Nausea, headache and dizziness: these symptoms are caused by the alcohol itself and the toxins that are released in the process of breaking down the alcohol. In addition, alcohol stimulates your kidneys to excrete more urine, which leads to dehydration. This loss of fluids strips your body of essential minerals and electrolytes and thus interferes with important metabolic processes.

Takeaway: You can’t get rid of a hangover with a morning run, but you can definitely make it more manageable!



Sascha Wingenfeld Sascha, health trainer & active triathlete, has been coaching runners from beginners to professionals for over 10 years. "I love my job and I love running." View all posts by Sascha Wingenfeld »