Alcohol & Marathon Training...

I am training for my 4th marathon and am desperate to go sub-4 (P.B. 4:03!) I was wondering if giving up alcohol would help with my efforts as well as training? I drink half a bottle of wine a week, sometimes a little more but not much...


  • Giving up half a bottle of wine a week is unlikely to make any difference unless you normally drink it half an hour before setting of on your long run ;o)
  • LOL V

    Spread over the week it's probably doing you more good than harm.

  • Tom.Tom. ✭✭✭
    I'd stick with the alcohol and up the training.

    I drink half a bottle of wine a night, and run 80-90 miles a week - a small price to pay for a regular tipple
  • Mmmm wish I only drank half a bottle of wine a week.

    Which marathon are you training for?
  • I wish I only drank half a bottle of wine a night.
  • Lol! Thanks guys, I will take your advice and keep on drinking ;-)

    I am aiming for Abingdon, although not sure if I am in yet :-o
  • Are you following a schedule P?
  • How big is the bottle LoL
  • Yes, still following the schedule (although missed the first few weeks due to wedding and honeymoon!)

    Well, when I say bottle it's more of a box...... ;-) lol!
  • 1/2 a bottle a week and your thinking of giving it up??? lol

    only compromisie where alcohol is concerned is not drinking (heavily) beofre a long run, other than that quite frankly i'd rather not eat!
  • And I thought I was the only one who's running interferred with my wine consumption !
    I do abstain the week before a marathon though.
  • Santababy - I'm with you on that!
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    Since I started running, even a small amount of alcohol makes me very tiddly.

    Makes me a cheap date. :o)
  • My alcohol consumption is about half a unit a month and I'm a cr@p runner. Infer what you will ;o)
  • half a bottle a week! if i could get down to half a night would be a start! Stopping never seems to make much of a difference to me. Running more does.
  • Of the many things I did to get from 4:18 to 3:50 was to quit booze for the 5 weeks before the marathon. I upped mileage by an average of 8 miles per week. I reccomend it. My doctor also said that a break like that gives your liver a chance to recover.
  • Parrotmad, get off this forum now. How dare you ask such a question.. I am going to apply to have this thread removed. Get a grip of yourself... give up the running but never the alcohol... During any run you can hear me calling my name " Ar need a beer". :-)
  • Thanks for all your thoughts! Looks like the general concensus is that I don't need to give my wine up, just what I was hopeing to hear!!!
  • If you are very serious about your running, then you will not missed your alcohol. I have not touch the stuff for a year now,. Recently I have been getting PB times for 10km and half marathons, next month I will running the Luton Marathon, previous marathon times were around 4 hrs, I am confident that I will reduce that to around 3 hrs 20 mins.  As a 43 years old person, I have a lot more energy than I did when I was in my 20's and 30's. 

  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭

    I don't think he can hear you, unless his half bottle of wine sent him into a deep sleep and he's only just woken up six years later.  image

    I'm serious about my running but I've got no intention of giving up alcohol, because it would make the rest of my life less enjoyable!

  • I've not drunk for nearly four weeks now in preparation for my first marathon on Sunday. It's been (very!) hard but I think it's helped; it's certainly meant that my long Sunday runs haven't been too much of a killer. And I've shaved 32 seconds from my 5k time (although I'd probably attribute most of that to the extra training and stamina).

  • parrotmad wrote (see)
    Thanks for all your thoughts! Looks like the general concensus is that I don't need to give my wine up, just what I was hopeing to hear!!!

    That's more like it, a glass/bottle/box half full attitude......

  • I tried it (abstention) for 6 weeks before a marathon. Didn't make any damned difference!!

    And wifey said if I ever do it again, she would divorce me!


  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    Absolutely - Steve Jones broke the world half marathon record the day after drinking ten pints of cider!

    Possibly a bit extreme for us mere mortals, but a good pint of beer (not that lager nonsense!) is full of electrolytes and other healthy stuff. A glass of beer or red wine a day has proven health benefits to help guard against heart disease and other nasties, and the relaxation effects of (sensible!) drinking can't begin to be quanitifed.

    Calorific value of alcohol is another issue, but not a big problem if you train hard!

    Bottoms up!!

  • Nessie wrote (see)
    Since I started running, even a small amount of alcohol makes me very tiddly.

    Makes me a cheap date. image)

    Nessie, if you're a lady... may I interest you in a date? (Blows dust from wallet)

  • I haven't had a drink in ages. I don't drink alone and the silly one has a stomach ulcer so can't drink. I do miss it a bit but on the whole I can't say that day to day it's made much of an impact to my life. Just the occaisional evening when I'd normally relax with a glass of red.

    Still, I like being able to get up early for my Weekend runs.

  • I've given up for the past 3 weeks and will continue until my marathon in 2 weeks,Will let you all know if it has helped although I guess it will be hard to prove. I certainly think when your in taper and the body is trying to repair and rebuild that cutting the booze is a good idea. After a few drinks the body will be expending energy and resource trying to break the alchohol down.

  • Crikey , I have to run just to compensate for a nice glass or 2 of Vino, life is to be enjoyed & I enjoy wine much more than running.... for now at least! Maybe one day the scales will tip the other but a winter without a cosy evening & wine in hand would make the winter drag far more than necsesary!!


  • This is a really encouraging thread .... I have no interest in giving up alcohol in my life, except in the tapering periods of training. Have had some people telling me that if I don't stop drinking altogether (ie for six months before my 1st marathon) I am not taking it seriously.

    Running is great but not at a total sacrifice of the other things I enjoy in life ... and a few cheeky glasses of vino is one of those things. Having said, I find myself drinking fruity cider the evenings of long runs as I need the sugar boost to keep me awake. image

  • I believe you just need to be sensible - most of the time!! Along with several others from our club we went off to Chester for this past weekend to run the marathon. One thing led to another and we all went off for something to eat but none of the pubs/restaurants seemed to have Lucozade Sport available so we opted for beer! Didn't intend to but managed 4 x pints on the Saturday. Got up, ran the race and came in 3.14hr - perhaps the carbs help?!! 

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