I'm a young guy and a lot of my social life centers around bars/drinking.
Frankly, I really like drinking (both the physiological and social aspects of it). But I've also realized it's aggregate effects really suck, i.e. poor sleep, really bad food/behavioral choices when drunk (seriously drunk 2am pizza is one of life's cruelest double edged swords) not to mention the direct affects like hangover and weight gain and ultimate training effects.
The problem is moderation, when I am around people drinking immoderately (i.e. my entire age group, basically)--especially once I get a few drinks in me most of my nutritional plans go the same way as the beer I just drank. The old saying is really true: "you drink the first drink, the first drink drinks the second drink and the second drink drinks the next ten".
I am not an alcoholic and don't crave alcohol when I'm not drinking, but I find it hard to remain moderate when I'm with people who are drinking hard at bars.
I will continue to go to bars
I will continue to hang out with my current social circle (great guys and gals all, whom I grew up with)
what would you do to: mitigate the mal-effects of the alcohol and the total amount consumed?
what is your: I'm at the bar and everyone is here to party game plan?
what is the least detrimental type of beer likely to be found at a bar? I've seen some conflicting stuff about whether darks like guinness are better or worse?
I've found that norcal margaritas to be great. Good aged whiskey* on the rocks is surprisingly great because, a) it has a pretty complex, good flavor and b) unless you are a maniac it is pretty much impossible to drink quickly.
I really don't believe 2-3 glasses of red wine a night are bad (and yea, I think ultimately probably more beneficial than abstaining) but try telling this to your loud friend who just walked back to the table with 3 pitchers of bud light. Sorry, just reality.
*distilled from grains, I know.