As you have probably heard in the past, most experts are recommending that we drink at least 2 litres of water, on a daily basis. But if you are exercises and depending on how hard the workouts are, you will need to drink more than that to replenish the extra fluid used, during your activities.
Below I will outline my Top 5 reasons why you should be aware of the amount of water that you consume, day to day and the benefits of getting it right!
- Water will maximise your performance during exercise.
If you don’t drink enough water during your training sessions, to help replace any fluids lost during exercise, your physical performance of the task at hand will suffer. Studies have shown that athletes can lose up to 10% of their body’s water content from sweating. Due to the drop in hydration they can feel a rise in body temperature, a decrease in motivation to train/compete, an increase in fatigue and a decrease in mental focus. As we know that muscle is made up of approximately 80% water, its no surprise that staying well hydrated before, during and after exercise, will help you perform at your best and in turn, give you better results from your training.
2. Staying well hydrated helps with weight loss.
Staying topped up with water during the day, greatly helps with weight loss for a number of reasons. One of the main reasons is the fact that you feel fuller for longer after eating. This in turn can limit your urge to snack between meals on easy to grab foods, but also helps with the feeling of satiety. This in turn helps control the hormonal response that makes your metabolism slow as it tries to store fuel for survival. Drinking water at a rate of 500ml every 1.5 hours has been shown to increase your metabolic rate by up to 30%, thus letting you burn more calories during the day. It is also noted in this study that consuming this water half an hour before a meal, will help you feel fuller after you eat.
3. Water helps treat headaches.
One of the major reasons that people suffer from headaches and even migraines, is due to dehydration. Some studies have proved that drinking just water can relieve a headache. Keeping hydrated throughout your day has also been shown to stop the onset of headaches, this is especially true if you are very active or exercise regularly.
4. Drinking water can manage constipation.
This is a very common problem for people that exercise and eat a high protein diet. They usually have a low fibre intake, especially if they like the low carb approach to eating to manage weight gain. If this is you then it has been shown, that increasing the amount of water you drink can help keep you regular if your diet is low in fibre. Personally I would also recommend increasing your fibre intake, for other health reasons, but do your best to get enough water in throughout your day. It has also been studied that carbonated water is particularly good in this area, although no one seems to know why this is.
5. Hydration has been shown to have a positive effect on energy levels and brain function.
The human brain is strongly influenced by how hydrated you keep your body during the day. It has been recorded in certain studies that even being slightly dehydrated by no more than 3% of body weight, can have negative effects on lots of aspects of brain function. Fluid loss between 1.3-1.6% from exercise in both men and women, was shown to impair mood, concentration, increase headaches, fogginess, working memory and increase feelings of fatigue and anxiety.
Lets all grab our favourite water bottle and do our best to stay well hydrated both in and out of the gym and hopefully we will all see an improvement in a few aspects of our day to day lives…but best of all get the most out of our training.