I am a big water drinker. I start the morning by filling my 24 oz Tervis cup full of water. I take this cup with me pretty much everywhere I go. Once it is empty, I fill it right back up (4-5 times a day). I try to drink as much water as I can, so much so that I rarely drink anything but water (ok, I do have my morning coffee) 🙂 Hydration is very important for me…I’m still adjusting to living at a higher elevation and I workout regularly.
Our perfect zero calorie drink. It quenches our thirst, regulates body temperature, lubricates body tissues and joints, and transports nutrients throughout our body. Water is also important for maintaining blood volume and blood pressure.
When I feel thirsty, I reach for water. Thirst is the perceived need for water, but really a symptom of dehydration. The hypothalamus is our control center for thirst. When our hypothalamus sends a signal for thirst that means that we are already slightly dehydrated.
Symptoms of Dehydration
1-2% loss causes thirst, fatigue and slight weakness
3-4% loss causes reduction in power and endurance
5-6% loss causes headaches, lack of focus and concentration
7-10% loss causes dizziness, poor balance, muscle spasms
Factors Effecting Fluid Loss
Degree of Sweating
Workout Duration and Intensity
Fluid Intake Recommendations
In general it is recommended for adults to consume 8 cups of water daily, but water needs vary among individuals. If you are very active you may need more to cover water loss from sweating.
One easy way monitor adequate fluid intake is your urine. If you are drinking enough your urine will be light in color. If you are getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, you probably getting enough water. 😀
If you workout you can estimate your sweat loss by measuring the difference between body weight before and after your workout.
Athletes & Water Consumption
- Drink fluids throughout the day, do not rely on thirst to drink
- 2-3 hrs prior to workout drink 2-20 oz of water
- During workout consume 6-12 oz for every 15-20 minutes of exercise
- After workout consume as much as needed to meet sweat loss
- Larger athletes may need to consume more water than listed to prevent dehydration
Water Content of Foods
Water Content for Selected Foods
Percentage Food item
90–99% Watermelon, Tomatoes, Lettuce
80–89% Oranges, Apple juice, Milk
70–79% Potatoes, Bananas, Chicken
Drinking water isn’t the only way to get fluids we need. The foods we eat contribute to the water we need. Soups, yogurts, fruits, and vegetables contain varying percentages of water. So…Eat, Drink and Stay Hydrated.
Do you drink water before you get thirsty or wait until you are thirsty?