Staying hydrated is one of the most important things you can do for your body. It is essential for everyone, but individuals working out have an even greater need to maintain proper hydration. Water is the most important nutrient for our bodies and it helps with regulating body temperature, lubricating joints and transporting nutrients and waste throughout the body. If you do not drink enough water and then you workout, you may feel sluggish, your muscles will fatigue easier, and when working out in the heat you are more susceptible for heat stroke/heat exhaustion.
If you are someone who loves doing the early morning workouts you are more likely to be dehydrated versus if you workout at the end of your day. So how do you hydrate before a morning workout, or any workout for that matter, without over hydrating? Guzzling down a water bottle full of water 10 minutes before a workout will not do anything!
Before we get started here are a few things you should remember about water:
– Take your weight then divide it by 2 and the number you come out with is how many ounces of water your body needs per day. For example, if you weigh 130 pounds, you need 65 ounces of water per day. That’s about 4 sixteen-ounce water bottles.
– If you have trouble drinking that much plain water per day try to infuse your water with lemon, lime, or other fruits. Citrus fruits are best in water because not only do they taste great but also they are rich in vitamin C.
– Every system in your body depends on water. Water flushes toxins out of vital organs, carries nutrients to your cells, helps to clear up your skin, and promotes overall health.
– Drinking water during and after each meal can help you feel full longer and aids in the digestion of your food.
– If you are someone who has a soda every day and you need something other than flat water, replace your soda with a sparkling water. This does not help in hydrating you 100% but it is a better replacement for that sugar-filled soda.
Hydrating the night before a workout:
– The American College of Sports Medicine suggests drinking beverages several hours before you exercise, so night is a good time for pre-hydrating. Drink water, milk, or 100% fruit or vegetable juice with dinner and before you go to bed drink some water as well. Try to avoid drinking a lot of water right as you go to sleep because this will result in waking up a few times in the middle of the night to use the restroom.
– Drink water 2-3 hours before your workout to give your body time to distribute the fluids and lubricate joints for a smoother workout.
Hydrating during a workout:
– It is important to replenish your body with water that is lost during the workout because of sweat, high body temperature, etc. Avoid sports drinks because although they may contain electrolytes they are doused in sugar and it takes your body approximately two hours to absorb the electrolytes from sports drinks.
Hydrating after a workout:
– To help you determine the amount of fluid you lose during exercise, you can weigh yourself before and after exercise. For each pound lost during activity, drink 24 ounces of water. If your body weight increased, you have over-hydrated and you should drink less fluid in future exercise sessions. After a workout of any kind, drink to quench your thirst and then drink some more, because your body will use thirst as a way to let you know you are dehydrated.
– As said above, try to avoid drinking sports drinks, although they contain electrolytes they will do more harm then good.. Electrolyte drinks, which contain sodium, potassium and other key nutrients, help replenish your body’s lost water, and electrolyte levels after intense exercise. Good alternatives to help rehydrate you are:
- Emergen-C. This contains immune supporting vitamin C, B vitamins to enhance energy naturally without caffeine, and electrolytes to refuel and replenish post-workout.
- Rehydrate from AdvoCare. Rehydrate includes antioxidants, carbohydrates, electrolytes, and other nutrients that effectively promote hydration and recovery. Rehydrate Drink has a 1:1 ratio of sodium and potassium, two of the most vital electrolytes that are lost when we sweat. To do more reading or order your own Rehydrate Drink follow the link on the picture.
Avoid caffeine, sugary drinks, and alcohol:
– Alcohol is a diuretic that increases the amount of fluid lost through urination. Cut back on your alcohol consumption, or avoid it completely, the night before you work out. Caffeine can also be a diuretic, but mainly in large amounts. Drinking caffeinated drinks at night may make you feel jittery and cause sleeplessness leading to easier fatigue during your workout the next day.