The weekend is approaching, and to many legal age people— that means one thing: drinking and celebrating the end of the week with your friends. While you might know that you’re going out and you might even know where— it can often be hard to predict where the night will take you. Therefore, many of you might end up drinking a little too much. We want to help you avoid that, while still having fun— and carrying on with your friends. Strategic drinking doesn’t mean you avoid having fun, or catching a buzz. It simply means that you are drinking, having fun, but keeping your cool and avoiding a nasty hangover the next day… 

Strategic Drinking: Eat, Drink, and Be Merry (Without the Hangover) 

Start with a decent meal 

The biggest mistake that people can make before a night of drinking, is to not have a decent meal. Drinking alcohol on an empty stomach is the complete opposite of strategic drinking. Furthermore, not eating will make you get drunker faster. While this might seem like a good thing to some, it can lead to a higher risk of alcohol poisoning, feeling sick, and also having to cut the night short. If you know you’re going to be drinking all night— have a decent dinner before you head out. 

Don’t start too fast 

Of course, the first thing you do when you get to a bar is grab a drink. No one is saying to avoid that— but, don’t drink it too fast. It can be a habit to take that drink and throw it back. But, when it comes to strategic drinking, you want to limit yourself to roughly 1 drink every thirty minutes. By doing so, you’ll avoid getting too drunk too fast, and you’ll be able to hold your own for hours to come. 

Cycle a water or two in there every now and then 

After your third or fourth drink, it might not be a bad idea to grab a water. While you don’t want to ruin your buzz, you also don’t want to end up dehydrated. One water every three drinks won’t harsh your evening, but it will lessen your chances of a hangover— and also help you pace yourself throughout the evening. Strategic drinking isn’t limited to just alcohol. It also includes water here and then. 

Lastly, before you head to bed— have a big glass of water and take an aspirin. After you get home, or to where you’re staying for the evening, it’s important to take these last two steps. Strategic drinking starts and ends with food, water, and self care. By following these measures, you can help prevent or lessen your hangover, have a better night, and maybe even remember it all the next day.