Although this is not your typical gym before and after photo, it serves as a huge reminder for us about the importance of maintaining adequate hydration. The first photo is our studio plant after three days of no water (oops!) and the second is the transformation it made in just three hours after watering! The truth is that an estimated 75% of us are walking around in a constant state of dehydration. So, let’s face it, we all can relate to this plant at some point during the year. While proper fitness and nutrition can seem overly complicated, you can improve your wellness with something so simple as being conscious of your water intake.
Consider this a gentle nudge to fill up your water bottle today and continue to fill it through out the day.
Water as a Performance Enhancer
Get the most out of your workouts by maintaining a proper hydration level. Some of the fatigue you feel during exercise could be fixed by simply hydrating. The effects of hydration on exercise performance are more impactful than any other supplement. Exercise performance is impaired when an individual is dehydrated by as little as 2% of body weight. Losses in excess of 5% of body weight can decrease the capacity for work by about 30% (study). When it comes to going hard in the gym, 30% is a lot of energy that can go untapped by something so simple as water. No supplement has ever been scientifically proven to help with performance by 30%.
Water for Weight Loss
We often hear people say, “I would do anything to lose weight!” Yet, when we ask about water consumption, it often isn’t happening. This is a 100% controllable factor. In one study of 50 overweight females, drinking 1.5 L of water prior to eating breakfast, lunch and dinner led to lower BMIs, body fat, and scale weight compared to the control group. Here is how drinking water can have a positive impact on weight lose:
Suppresses appetite by helping with the feeling of fullness
Keeps waste moving out of the body
Replace other liquid calories with more water
Water for Overall Health
Water comprises anywhere from 55 to 75% of our body weight. It is one of the most essential nutrients and is crucial for cellular homeostasis and life.
Bone is about 22% water
Fat is about 25% water
Muscle and brain are about 75% water
Blood is about 83% water
Eyes are about 95% water
You’re caring for every cell of your body by staying hydrated. Here a few areas that will benefit:
Regulates body temperate
Aids in digestion (absorption of nutrients)
Keeps your mind clear
Keeps skin clear and bright
Improves mood (dehydration can make you feel extra cranky)
Strategies to Get Your Water In
The truth is that you can not rely on the feeling of thirst to tell you when to drink. If you’re thirsty, dehydration has already set in. Just like any other healthy habit, set yourself up for success by creating an environment of success for yourself — figure out how to have access to water through out the day. How much water we actually need will vary depending on our stage of life and circumstances. Average adults should start with baseline amount of 8 cups or 2 Liters per day.
1) Drink a big glass before all meals
2) Drink one glass of water between all alcoholic beverages
3) Have fun with your flavors by adding fruit (strawberry, lemon, orange etc.) or herbs (basil, mint etc) to your water jug
4) Keep a gallon jug nearby
If you feel yourself slipping on sipping, get reinvested in your water drinking goals for the day!