Drink more water! Make sure you’re hydrated! Blah blah blah, we’ve heard it all before but do you know why it’s so important to be adequately hydrated?
Our bodies are around 70% water and without enough of it we just don’t function properly and it can prevent us reaching our fitness goals. Dehydration and illness can be caused by losing just 10% of your body’s water, really not that much when you think about how often you lose it through going to the toilet, sweating and just existing. Losing any more than that and you’re getting into dangerous health territory.
Here are my top reasons why we should be guzzling the good stuff:
1) Our brains are about 90% water so making sure that you’re drinking enough ensures that your brain can function efficiently and you can stay focused on whatever you need to concentrate on
2) Dehydration can cause your skin to appear wrinkled and tired so if you want to have plump and youthful looking skin make sure your skin cells are pumped full of water and use a moisturiser to seal in that moisture
3) Without enough water your muscles can shrivel which means that when you start working out you will fatigue much quicker and that kickass workout that you have planned is suddenly not an option
4) Your liver needs water to metabolise fat so if your goal is to lose body fat then drink that water so you can torch your fat reserves
5) It helps keep you regular because if you’re dehydrated then your body pulls water back out of your poo (sorry that I didn’t call it ‘stools’ but that word has never sat right with me…) and makes you constipated. No one wants that now. Sufficient fibre and fluid will keep your colon and bowel healthy and efficient
6) Water helps your body get rid of toxins by allowing the kidneys to function properly and flush out all the nasties in your body. If you regularly don’t drink enough then you risk damaging your kidneys
7) Adequate water helps to keep muscles and joints lubricated and will help to stop you getting cramps and strains
8) Often if you feel hungry you might actually just be thirsty so if you’re prone to snacking unnecessarily chug a glass of water before reaching for the snacks, wait 15 minutes and see if your hunger goes away
So how do you know if you’re drinking enough? Well, this is where you have to start looking at your pee. It should be light in colour, relatively odourless and easy to pass. If it becomes stronger in colour or odour or you have to strain then you need to get on the water and rehydrate your body because it’s struggling.
Try and aim for a minimum of 2 litres of water each day which can include some caffeine-free herbal tea but not tea or coffee because caffeine can be dehydrating in itself. I find it easiest to have a big bottle of water (800ml) that I fill up 3 times during the day so that I know I’ve drunk my minimum fluid required. I’ll top that up when I work out with an extra 500ml and here’s my top tip; whenever someone offers you a drink, take it and drink a glass of water. You’ll be amazed at how much extra you’ll drink.
How do you make sure you drink enough?