I have a recurring thought these days:
My 54-year-old self cannot deny that alcohol is not generally a positive in my life if I drink more than a couple drinks a week.
It makes fat loss extremely difficult.
It makes maintaining body comp, even if fat loss isn't a priority (for me it's not; I'm pretty lean), extremely difficult.
It fucks with my sleep, in subtle ways -- e.g., I never get up to pee in the middle of the night, unless I've had alcohol; if I've had even one drink, I get up to pee. Every. Fucking. Time.
I always wake up feeling great in the morning, if I haven't had a drink. I don't always wake up feeling bad if I have had one, but it's a crap shoot, and I am always more sluggish in the morning if there's been a drink the night before.
It crushes testosterone levels, which isn't just about sex. It has effects on all the above too.
It is estrogenic as hell -- which is a lot like: "It crushes testosterone levels."
I just don't look as good naked if I have a drink most days.
Bottom line? Wow, is it clear to me that if I want to feel and look my
best, I should make alcohol an occasional treat rather than a frequent
part of the program.
I'm not about to quit entirely. I enjoy occasional social drinking. So I'll do that. Occasionally. Emphasis on occasionally.
(And, for what it's worth, it's actually more of an exercise in willpower for me to have just like two drinks a week, which is what I have been doing lately, than it is just to quit entirely, because if alcohol is at least a possibility in my head, then it is a possibility every day -- if that makes sense -- which means I have to actively say, "No," most days. That's not a huge deal, but contrast booze to, say, bread, which is so far off the table as a regular food item for me that I never get home from work and think, "Hmmm, maybe a little bread?")
And yeah, a lot of this is age-related. I look around at my fellow 54-year-old males and I see a lot of manboobs and flabby bellies. I don't have any of those things. I don't want to have any of those things. Those things come from shrinking testosterone levels. Regular alcohol consumption kills testosterone.
This seems like a spectacularly easy -- and sensible -- call.