We’ve all been there – you know you have big plans in the morning: work, family event, a date. You know the last thing you need is a late night, especially one that involves the dreaded poison of alcohol. You know the right thing to do is to stay home in your jammies, with a mug of tea and a box set of Glee.
But no. Peer pressure, guilt – trips from friends, or the irrational thought that ‘sure it’ll be grand, I’ll only have a couple of drinks’, convince you that the right thing to do is to stay out til the wee small hours, downing shots of tequila in the local nightclub and dancing like a pro to the latest Tinie Tempah choon.
You tell yourself you’ll be fine in the morning, you’ll drink seven pints of water before you go to bed and you’ll be perfectly refreshed and sparkling the next morning. But this plan never works.
I speak from experience. Many’s a time I was convinced to go out and ‘take her handy’ – which usually meant I ended up dancing on one of the tables, the bar, a leather pouffe (classy girl over here).
The next morning you wake up and initially you feel perfect. ‘Pffft, I knew I’d be grand’, you think to yourself. This is your body’s clever ruse. You’re not fine at all, you’re still bananas drunk. You trot off to work, or wherever it is that required you to be functioning at top-level. You feel absolutely perfect, on TOP OF THE WORLD, for the first hour, if you’re lucky. Then the hangover hits, like a grand piano falling from a great height.
You start to feel dizzy; bright light hurts your eyes and it becomes virtually impossible to smile and string a coherent sentence together. You start to sweat, your stomach churning, and the awful thought creeps into your mind : ‘How long before I can stop pretending I feel great, and I can stagger home and crawl into my bed and melt?’.
FEAR NOT, MY FRIENDS. There is a solution: you need not fear the post – party hangover anymore. I have compiled a few helpful ways to avoid it altogether. HOORAY.
First of all, hydration is important. The whole day before you go out, drink as much water as you possibly can – get one of those 2 litre bottles and haul it around with you everywhere. Cumbersome, but drinking water helps flush out toxins and keeps your body on top form, helping you to more effectively battle against the poisons of the alcohol that will no doubt fly down your throat later that night – after all, everybody loves a tequila train.
The thoughts of exercise the morning after a particularly heavy ( I prefer ‘spirited’) night out have most people crawling further under the duvet. But it can really help to combat a bad hangover. Something about sweating out the toxins, and the movement, peps you up. If the thought of that turns your stomach even more than all those double vodkas then try it before you go out. I have found that going for a good gym session during the day BEFORE I go out leaves me feeling ready for anything – even jagerbombs – and less of a hangover the next morning.
Food – maybe not a 3 in 1 from the 24 hour chinese down the road, because if you forget to eat it and discover it the next morning when you step in it - you realise by the way the rock hard rice coats itself onto your foot – then it probably isn’t the most nutritious thing you could consume. Instead, try pasta or a sandwich – something to absorb some of the excess alcohol. WHO NEEDS A REASON TO EAT PASTA? I sure don’t. See ye hangover.
If you try allll of these remedies, and you still feel like you’ve been hit by a bus, FAKE IT. Chances are, you only have to pretend to be feeling great for a few hours and then you can go home and die. So smile, plaster on the make up, smother yourself in nice – smelling perfume or cologne, keep drinking water and make sure you have three packets of chewing gum on standby – keeping your jaws busy will give you something to think about other than the overwhelming desire to be sick. Nobody wants to be served by someone who has to keep leaving to vomit every seven minutes – you’ll never get any work done. Nobody wants to go out to dinner or the cinema with someone who only wants to eat bread sticks, or falls asleep during the opening credits.
Fake it til you make it – calling in sick or cancelling does not a great girl ( or boy ) image create. Down the Vitamin C drinks, the Diet Coke or the Lucozade, and picture it as the Elixir of Life – giving you the energy and the ability to breeze through your day effortlessly – or at least create the image of a someone who has it together, and definitely doesn’t need a bucket or a plastic bag beside them on standby.