Hey guys! Well it's that time of year again. The end of summer is fast approaching which means the hottest days of the year will be here soon. You all know what i'm talking about. Those hot and humid days when there is not even a little bit of a breeze and the only escape from it is to plant yourself in front of the air conditioner and pant like a dog. Unfortunately, most of us will have to spend some time outdoors in that heat whether it is practices, working in the yard or some family get together. It is on those days you will wish that you had hydrated properly to avoid things like cramps and heat exhaustion.
There are two things that your body does naturally that you can use to judge if you are dehydrated or not. The first is you urine. If you find yourself using the bathroom every couple hours and your urine is a light yellow tint and is mostly free of odor than you are doing the right thing. When your urine turns a dark yellow tint or becomes brownish and has a noticeable scent, you are dehydrated. Make sure you keep track of when the last time you went to the bathroom was as well. If you find that the last time you went was 8 hours ago, you are dehydrated. The second is your thirst. If you find that you just cannot quench your thirst, you are dehydrated. Drink more often.
We have all heard the old recommendation that we need to drink 8 cups of water each day. This is a good start but it is not necessarily the right call for every person. We all have different needs based on the size of our bodies and the amount of activity we are in involved in. Don't think of your hydration as a fixed amount of water you drink each day. Rather, think of it as a sliding scale. I also want you to think of everything that you eat or drink as an opportunity to change you hydration.
Make sure that you are eating plenty of fruits and vegetables. They contain a ton of water and are an easy way increase you hydration while maintaining a healthy diet.
Drink plenty of fluids throughout the entire day. I recommend you drink at least one glass of water with every meal. Carrying a water bottle with you all day and taking a few sips between phone calls or answering emails is an easy tip that anyone can follow.
Drink before during and after any bout of exercise. Intense exercise requires a hydrated body. If you only drink when you are done with a session you will playing catch up for the rest of the day or the next couple of days.
Remember that everything you drink can help to hydrate you. This means that any milk, juice or coffee that you drink throughout the days counts as well. Just make sure not to drink an excessive amount of coffee as too much will begin to dehydrate you.
Lastly, listen to your body. As i mentioned before your body has a beautifully simple way of telling you to drink more.
Enjoy the rest of your summer and if you have any question regarding staying hydrated feel free to ask your unlimited personal training coach at your next session.