Ah, the joy of friends, a beautiful evening, and a delicious boozy drink in my hand. It’s a feeling that is hard to beat. I really do look forward to my Saturdays. I love spending time outdoors, with friends, along with a mixed drink or a flavorful IPA. In my early twenties I recognized something. That first drink never seems to be the last. 

The creation of the Two Drinks, One Water

I was in undergrad at the University of Tennessee. My friends and I were taking BCMB 230 (human physiology) and learning about the affect of alcohol once it is absorbed into our bloodstream. We thought it would be interesting to go the bars or a party and keep track of each others BAC (blood alcohol content). It was a fun way of combining what we were learning during the week with what we were “learning” on the weekend.

We wanted to have fun on the weekends, but didn’t like feeling bad after a night of drinking. We discovered if we kept our BAC levels at a certain point we could have fun, yet not cause too much damage to ourselves. Plus, we knew from physiology that hangovers were 100% caused by dehydration. This led to the Two Drinks, One Water Method.

Two Drinks, One Water Method in action

Like normal college students, we would calculate our BAC throughout the night. We tried to keep it below 0.07%. In an 2 hours and 30 minutes, thats two and a half mixed drinks (with 1.5oz. of 40% alcohol) for a 140lb. girl, three beers and one mixed drink for a 185lb. guy.

We found that drinking water after our first drink was helpful, but wasn’t sustainable throughout the night. However we did realize that one full cup of water (without ice) after every two drinks was sustainable. We found our BAC levels remained below 0.07%, we drank farrr less, and didn’t have hangovers the next day. Sure, there we times we didn’t stick to our hydration method. What’s important is we followed it more often than not. (Click here to play around with a BAC calculator).

The objectives

There were three definined objectives behind the creation of this method.

  1. Drink less (bc of calories & hangover)
  2. Stay hydrated
  3. Have fun 

It’s a simple method that we found to be ridiculously successful. It was fun to see what our BAC was as the night progressed. It was also interesting to calculate the BAC levels of people who, well, weren’t so concerned with a hangover the next day.

When executed to the T, the rewards were far beyond what we could have ever imagined. 

The three steps

Step 1: Tell everyone you’re out with the gameplan.

Ex: “Listen, tonight I am drinking a full glass of water after my second drink. Got it? Good.”

Step 2: Execute the plan after the second drink.

Ex: “May I have a full glass of water, no ice. Thank you!”

Step 3: Repeat steps 1 & 2.

The rewards

The Two Drinks, One Water Method was undeniably successful for me and my friends. When applied we find that alcohol consumption was often cut by 50% or more. Even in a upbeat social setting (tailgating before football games, birthday parties, or a random weekend outing) we drank far less. We found by followed the Two Drinks, One Water Method each objective (drink less, hydrated, fun) were always achieved. In fact, we found that we would often stop drinking completely after the third or fouth drink. At major celebrations. On the weekend. It was phenomenal. 

Pros and Cons

What were the rewards of drinking less and hydrating? Did we find any drawbacks? We certainly did.

From a completly objective standpoint, applying the method is a great idea. After major celebrations, I feel phenominal the next day while it seems others aren’t as bright and smiley.

The only drawback was more trips to the bathroom. In physiology we learned that alcohol triggers the kidneys to trigger our bladder more frequently. The body loses large amounts of water when we drink, so it didn’t bother us when we had to make a trip or two extra throughout the night.

Nonetheless, we can’t quite understand why this method hasn’t caught on. Oh well, at least we feel great! We’ve been having our cake and eating it for years now. Nothing would flatter us more than a few of you to join us and hydrate your way through the fun.

Hope you and your loved one’s have a safe and fun 4th of July weekend!!