Whether it’s wooder or water – you need more of it this time of year. Here’s why.
First of all we’re more water than anything else as water makes up about 60% of our body (babies are close to 75%!). Even those rock solid bones we have, over 20% water in them.
In your body, water works as a transporter in and out of your cells, it makes chemical reactions possible, lubricates joints and regulates our temperature when we sweat – so yea, it’s important.
What’s really remarkable is how little we need to lose through sweat and dehydration to start having a negative impact on our body.
A 1% loss of body water reduces aerobic endurance.
A 3% loss leads to reduced muscle endurance.
A 5% loss causes heat exhaustion, cramping and reduced mental capacity.
Now, yes – you can drink too much water as well and that has a host of issues associated with it, but generally – we find that folks are far more likely to be dehydrated. So how much should you be drinking?
If you’re a class-taking fitness person. Half a liter-to a full liter (16-32 ounces) over the hour of class is a good goal (bring a water bottle to class!). Then another half to full liter post workout. Try to add a half liter with meals. All told, hitting a daily total in ounces that equals the number of pounds you weigh is a good general goal for active people (you may need more).
A great way to start tracking is to get a water bottle like a Nalgene with markers on it, so you know what you’re actually drinking. Don’t refill it until it’s empty so you know how much you’re taking in. Also, starting your day drinking a full one before you drink coffee is a great start.
Electrolytes can help as well, especially this time of year, we like Nuun tablets as an affordable option that don’t also come with lots of additives and garbage in them. Remember, you’re basically a plant, drink some water!