Your Hour-By-Hour Guide To Day Drinking This Memorial Day, Because It's Good To Have A Plan

Aside from the three-day weekend filled with friends, family, beaches, and BBQs, Memorial Day is also the perfect opportunity to day drink. There’s no real science behind how to day drink and not feel like a zombie the next day, but I’ve done enough day drinking myself to know some hour-by-hour best practices.

Everyone day drinks a little differently, but there are definitely some things that will always happen. You’re going to get sleepy, you’re going to lose track of time, and you’re definitely going to express your undying love for someone (OK, everyone). But surviving the day with no hangover the next morning is possible — as long as you follow a very structured timetable of eating, drinking, and water pounding. Day drinking is no time to be a hero, and it's definitely not the time to try to prove something to anyone. Just take it easy, and enjoy the time with friends and family while also enjoying your favorite Memorial Day beverages.

My best advice is to be prepared. It’s not a good idea to stay out drinking the night before, because waking up with a hangover is going to hinder your day drinking plans. Hydrate the day before, and make sure you get a good night's rest — it’s going to be a long day!

Morning — Whenever You Wake Up to 11 a.m.

Personally, I’m a firm believer in sleeping in on your days off. As I said, the best prep you can do before day drinking is getting enough sleep, so keep that in mind. But if you’re one of those crazy people who still choose to get up at the crack of dawn to go to Pilates on a holiday weekend, so be it.

Make sure you start your day drinking adventure off right with a big breakfast. Something capable of soaking up alcohol later, such as pancakes, bacon, a protein-packed omelette, or hash browns. Most importantly, don’t start drinking until after you’ve eaten and had a little time to digest.

11 a.m.

Brunch is always fun on a holiday weekend, but beware. The lure and bargain of bottomless mimosas will be your first challenge — and your day drinking downfall if you give in. If you start boozing too early (or without eating), you’ll be ready to hit the hay before it’s even dark. If you’re going to brunch, remember to pace yourself.

12 p.m.

Now is the socially acceptable time to start drinking if you’re not brunching. But seriously, two drink maximum — brunch or no brunch. And I suggest having a mellow drink like a mimosa or a light beer. Starting with vodka shots is out of the question.

1 p.m.

Time for a snack. Pick an energizing food like almonds, peanuts, avocado, or watermelon to help you balance out the depressant in booze. You’re probably not starving since you had a big breakfast (right?!), but you should still eat something.

2 p.m.

You probably have one or two drinks in you. Feeling good, right? But don’t lose focus. Pound some water to stay hydrated, and hence awake and ready for more. If you’re feeling really tired though, get a little caffeine in you.

3 p.m.

Cool, good, you’re doing great. You've had some good food and some water, but you might be feeling a little sleepy. I love naps as much as the next person, but napping is the enemy of day drinking. You’ll wake up groggy and dehydrated, and feeling crappy before your evening plans. Instead of napping, do something moderately active. Take a walk, take a dip in the pool/lake/ocean, or play a yard game. Have fun and get pumped!

4 p.m.

Time to start drinking again! Yay! Whether you’re hitting a bar or a BBQ, try and sit outside whilst enjoying your beverages. You should still be pacing yourself, so have something similar or even the same as what you had earlier this afternoon. Share a finger food with your friends, such as chicken tenders or nachos. Something greasy and delicious, but not too heavy.

5 p.m.

Finish whatever you’re drinking, and go back to water. You’re in the home stretch. Soon, it’ll be dinnertime and more drinking.

6 p.m.

You’re probably heading to your Memorial Day BBQ or dinner at this point. I know now seems like the time to go wild and drink everything in sight, but do not do that. You might not feel drunk, but you’ve had a combined six drinks in you at this point. So just take it easy. Also, the worst thing you can do right now is mix too many alcohols. If you’ve been drinking beer, stick with that.

7 p.m.

Unless you’re a vegan or vegetarian, you need meat. Now. Memorial Day food is typically off the grill deliciousness like tri-tip, chicken, and ribs. Eat it. And then drink up.

8 p.m.

You’re going to start to feel really full and sleepy and awesome. You could probably have one or two more drinks, but gauge when you need to leave and how you’re getting home.

9 p.m.

Stop drinking. But that beer down this instant. Now is the time to switch to water and get ready to be done for the day. You’re going to want to drink so much water that you’ll have to pee every 10 minutes. You need to sober up so you can drive home, or be able to thank that kind friend for dropping you off/letting you crash.

10 p.m.

Continue to drink water until you’re ready to go to sleep. The more water you drink, the better you’re going to feel in the morning. And since you probably have to go to work the next day, that should be your goal.

Congrats! You’re a day drinking champion!

Images: Don Heller/Flickr; Giphy