Give Up the Booze — Try a Non-Alcoholic Fitness Cocktail

After a long week filled with intense workouts or strength training, you may want to reward yourself with a drink. Try skipping an alcoholic beverage and having a healthy, delicious mocktail instead. These refreshing cocktail substitutes are full of flavor but without the hangover and leave you feeling better about staying in shape.

Key takeaways:
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    If you are up for a dry challenge, consider a mocktail as an alternative to alcoholic cocktails.
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    Mocktails are available in restaurants, online, or you can make them at home.
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    Mocktails include most of the ingredients found in regular cocktails but with no alcohol. These beverages can support your fitness goals as they contain plenty of essential nutrients and antioxidants.
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    Mocktails are alternatives to alcoholic beverages because they provide energy and hydration, thus can be a great addition to a healthy diet.

Energizing non-alcoholic fitness cocktails

As the name implies, a non-alcoholic cocktail — also known as a mocktail — commonly includes similar ingredients, mixers, and garnishes used in cocktails — but without the alcohol. However, often, mixologists use their years of experience to create exhilarating non-alcoholic beverages using fresh herbs, fruit juices, and seasonal flowers.

Among these cocktails are some which could benefit those who exercise regularly, as they contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to support muscle recovery and overall health.

Non-alcoholic cocktails are trending in restaurants and stores. The internet is filled with recipes as more people look into this option. Some people may skip the booze and join the Dry January or One Year No Beer movements, while others simply have a big workout scheduled the next day. Some people contemplate giving up alcohol altogether to boost their health and fitness (think more energy, better sleep, no empty calories). In contrast, others are curious to try this popular trend among gymgoers. Regardless of the reason, there are plenty of mocktails to choose from.

According to recent statistics, the younger generations are the driving force behind the explosion of the non-alcoholic movement. For example, an estimated 42% of millennials drink alcohol regularly, compared to only 21% of Gen Z age group.

Where to find non-alcoholic fitness cocktails

Most North American restaurants offer alcohol-free options. However, if you're interested in a better selection, do an internet search for "bars for non–drinkers near me." For example, Zero Cocktail Bar, Toronto's first sober bar, offers plenty of non-alcoholic beverages for in-house consumption or home delivery.

Another option is to shop around for non-alcoholic spirits. For example, Seedlip Spice 94 is a distilled non-alcoholic spirit crafted with aromatic botanicals that can be used to create various mocktails. However, the distiller recommends simply mixing the spirit with tonic or soda to craft a refreshing mocktail that allows the plant distillate to shine.

Before buying store-bought pre-mixed cocktails, read the label. The so-called “performance “ beers and drinks are marketed as a healthier alternative to "an ice cold beer" after a workout. However, though they may look like energy drinks because they contain electrolytes and herbs, these drinks often contain alcohol.

Finally, you can make your zero-alcohol cocktails at home. Simply look for DIY recipes based on your preference. Since you want to make a healthy cocktail to support your workout routines, make sure the cocktail is relatively low in calories, with no added sugar, yet packed with vitamins and antioxidants. If you want to boost the nutrient content, replace water with coconut water or kombucha in some recipes. Just be aware that kombucha contains very small amounts of alcohol.

You can also add your liquid vitamin or amino acid supplement to the drink if the flavors of the supplement complement or enhance the taste of the cocktail.

Great recipes to try at home

Here are a few recipes for alcohol-free cocktails for athletes. They are nutritious, full of flavor, and, best of all, can be enjoyed without causing a hangover. These mocktails contain some of the richest sources of antioxidants like berries, citrus, tomato juice, and mint, which promote muscle recovery and more energy — perfect while doing a dry challenge for many fitness enthusiasts.

Red Sangria Mocktail

The original sangria is a traditional Spanish drink made from wine, fruits, fruit juices, and sweeteners. It's a pleasant, refreshing drink that's perfect for a holiday dinner or a hot summer night. To create a non-alcoholic version, simply skip the wine.


  • In a large pitcher, combine two parts cranberry juice and one part of white grape juice. In a pitcher, add one cup of fresh fruits, including berries (cranberries, blueberries, raspberries) and citrus (lemons, oranges). Add a few fresh mint leaves.
  • Cover the pitcher and chill for at least four hours or overnight.
  • To serve, fill half of a wine glass with ice and add sangria.

Virgin (Bloody) Mary

While the origins of this drink are still disputed, the Bloody Mary is one of the most popular cocktail drinks worldwide. The virgin Bloody Mary includes all of the ingredients from the original version — minus the vodka. This mocktail could be a great choice after a workout or for Sunday brunch.


  • Rim a tall glass with coarse salt, then fill it with ice.
  • Add 1-4 shakes of Tabasco or Franks hot sauce, pour a splash of soda or zero-alcohol beer over ice, and fill the rest of the glass with tomato or V8 juice.
  • Garnish with black pepper, celery sticks, olives, cucumber slices, or even bacon or boiled shrimp for some extra protein.


Like the traditional Cuban Mojito, Nojito contains mint, lime juice, and sugar. The only differences are that the Nojito does not contain white rum, and the sugar can be replaced with zero-carb sweeteners like stevia or monk fruit.


  • In a tall glass, muddle 10 fresh small spearmint leaves with one pack of stevia and the juice from half of a lime. Add crushed ice and a can of club soda (or a healthy alternative like Zevia or Bubbly).
  • Garnish with a slice of lime and a few mint leaves. Serve with a straw.


Do you enjoy regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle yet miss the old fashion, alcohol-based cocktails? No problem. Mocktails have never been so popular and widely available. Enjoy them in a restaurant, buy them online, or make your drinks at home from scratch.

Since you want to support your health goals, make sure they are more nutritious — without added sugar or empty calories.

Also, keep in mind that mocktails replace regular alcoholic beverages and not energy drinks, regular water, or a healthy diet.


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