I know you all know that hydration is important. But do you really understand why? It’s more than just a simple replacing the water you lose throughout the day. Proper hydration affects brain function, digestion, energy levels, skin and hair quality, and so much more!
Now, water intake can be from more than just drinking water. Watery foods such as soups and yogurt, vegetables like oranges, watermelon and salad greens, even coffee and soda can all go towards your hydration! So, with all of these things counting towards our hydration, the average individual honestly gets enough water throughout the day to stay properly hydrated. So why am I talking about it?!
Because a lot of you are into fitness like I am and busy like I am! Individuals that exercise not only need to drink more water to replace what is lost through sweat and breath, but exercise also inhibits indicators of thirst! So while you may be hitting the gym hard during a session or sweating it out on a run and feel like you don’t need to drink any water, you most likely do!
Thirst is actually one of the worst indicators of dehydration. Instead, it is recommended to drink enough to replace the weight lost during your average workout session. Even beyond that, it is important not to take in too much plain water, throwing off the body’s sodium levels! Instead, switch to a sports drink or take electrolyte tablet during longer workout sessions.
Some things that can be effected by hydration levels
- heart rate
- metabolic rate
- brain performance
- physical performance
- skin and hair health
- body temperature
- energy levels
So, why am I talking to you about this right now? Because along with getting out of balance on my workout routine this past 6 months, I also found myself routinely dehydrated. This was my own fault, mostly due to letting the time get away from me and being very task focused. But did you realize that even a 2% drop in hydration can decrease brain performance? How much of an easier time would I have had if I had stayed properly hydrated? So here are some things that I am doing to make sure I stay better hydrated now!
- Make sure I’m always carrying my water bottle! (I love my Takeya one)
- Set a timer for every 30 minutes to take a sip
- Track how many bottles I have drank each day to check in
Is hydration something that you have struggled with? What do you do to make sure that you stay properly hydrated?
(Also, you can check out this post from REI for some further reading!)