The Importance of Hydration
Water and some of its amazing benefits!
Water is crucial for survival. You quite literally cannot live without it. Staying hydrated throughout each and every day will ensure that your body is performing optimally as well as ensuring you have enough energy to process properly at work, general life and in the gym! It is especially important to stay hydrated when it is hot.
With this in mind, I am going to outline some benefits below so you can understand the importance of water. If you train with me in the gym or have heard me speaking to clients, I am sure that you have at some stage heard me asking questions about how much water to drink!
Regulation of body temperature
When you exercise, you perspire and lose water/salts through the form of sweat. The same is said of hot temperatures. Essentially whenever you sweat you are losing water and will need to replenish it.
Sweating helps keep your body cool, but failure to drink more water can lead to a rise in body temperature. If you are finding yourself to be sweating more than you usually do for whatever reason, be sure to drink more water to avoid dehydration.
Water is not just for drinking and hydration, it also helps with a few bodily functions too. Water allows your body to get of waste material through sweat and urine and is crucial for bowel movements.
Drinking plenty of water will give your body its best chance of having regular, healthy bowel movements. Not to mention it can reduce and ease constipation if it is to occur.
When it comes to urination, your body's kidneys will help filter out waste via urine. Another reason to keep fluid intake high is to reduce risk of kidney stones and drinking enough water will help your kidneys/organs perform more effectively.
If you are reading this you are likely into working out or a member of Portside Personal Training. When you are training, you are sweating, this can lead to a reduction of up to 10% body weight via water during physical activity.
Meaning it is important to drink water regularly around and during your training session. If you neglect water intake, it can affect not only performance outside of the gym but your overall strength, endurance and power.
If you partake in higher intensity exercise such as HIT or some form of class, you'll likely fatigue much, much faster if you are near or at dehydration. In my experience the amount of people that I have previously trained that turn up to PT or a class is too high a number. Please remember your water and drink often throughout the day!
Drinking more water can seem challenging at first, but it is something you will soon feel the effects of and wish you had started sooner! The amount to consume per day can vary based on multiple factors. However, 2-3 liters is a good start and more is required the more active you are/become.
Aids Digestion and Nutrient Absorption
Drinking water around and during meals can help your body break the food down and make it easier to digest. In doing so you will feel better during digestion and your body will become more efficient at this process.
Additionally to this water helps dissolve minerals, vitamins, and other vital nutrients from the food that you consume. These are then delivered to your body to be used.
Weight loss, joints and tissue health
It is worth noting briefly that water directly helps lubrication of the joints, body tissue and even your spinal cord! When paired with supplementation this can make physical activity more comfortable in general and if you suffer from a condition such as arthritis.
Moving onto weight loss, which is a big goal of a lot of people that step foot into the gym, drinking water can help you lose excess weight alongside a proper diet due to its effects on nutrient absorption, waste removal, hydration of muscle tissue and an improved circulation of blood to muscles in general.
Sometimes hunger can even be mistaken for thirst, the next time you feel a little hungry, try drinking a big glass of water and see if it alleviates the feeling!
Mood, Energy and Skin Health
Dehydration can lead to fatigue both physically and mentally, which can also result in irritability, confusion and anxiety. By keeping water high, you will feel better for it and it will likely equal a more positive mood.
Drinking water can also activate and increase your metabolism in general, resulting in an increased level of energy. Going back to mood, it can improve your cognitive function also meaning you will have better focus, alertness and short term energy compared to not having enough water.
Lastly, staying hydrated will keep your skin healthy and help you appear to have a glow, it has also been known to help in the production of collagen. Can also help reduce spots if this is something that you suffer with.
With all of this in mind, some ways in which you can stay on top of water intake are listed below for you:
Carry a water bottle with you at all times.
Keep track of intake via the same bottle, frequently throughout the day.
Drink water with every meal.
A glass upon waking and a glass before/close to bed.
Set reminders if you are likely to forget.
Small sips often and consistently throughout the day.
Hopefully this blog helps and can motivate you to drink more water each day. If you found this helpful, please let us know! Also, if you have any tips or tricks, feel free to share. We would love to hear them!