Staying hydrated is essential. Even when you are not doing any strenuous activity, you still lose water when you perspire, urinate, or defecate. Everything that happens inside your body also requires water. If there is not enough water to sustain the proper functioning of every organ in the body, you know what happens next. Without sufficient water in the body, you will have problems concentrating and making intellectual connections of things around you. The blood thickens. This pushes the heart to exert more effort to help the blood to be transferred just in time before you experience the signs of dehydration.
If you do not pay attention to proper hydration, it will not only affect your body functioning at the moment but may also result in other heat-related conditions. When you are out doing your regular runs, it is best you bring the best water bottles for running to keep you hydrated. If not, your performance will be affected. Improper hydration may lead to exhaustion, headaches, dizziness, muscle cramps, difficulty in breathing, and many other things. If you will continuously disregard the signals that your body is sending you, you may later experience heatstroke, fainting, even worse, convulsions and heart failure.
If you are always on the go to complete your planned run for the day, you need to pay attention to what and how much you are drinking before, during, and after your workout. Following are some essential reminders that you need to take seriously if you want to gain more from your running streaks.
Hydration should never start only when you feel like drinking. As I have already pointed out earlier, your body continuously uses water. If you are doing more and are moving about, your body will require even more water. Factors such as the intensity of your activity, the environment, overall health, and age. Special conditions, like if you are pregnant or are on a diet, have urinary tract stones, bladder infections, have gout, or are constipated, will require you to take more liquid.
There are some health conditions that may restrict your water or fluid intake, however. No matter your overall health is, if you have set to go on a regular run or activity any time of the day, you need to pre-hydrate to be at your best once you start running or doing other exercises.
If you intend to do a long run or will participate in a race, it’s critical to make sure that you’re well-hydrated during the few days leading up to the event. You can be assured that you’re well-hydrated if you urinate about six or more a day and your urine is light-colored. Pre-hydration should start days before your long run (or race). Drink a lot of water and consider no alcoholic drinks during this period as it can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.
Just an hour before you start your run, drink about two glasses of water (about 16 ounces) or other non-caffeinated drinks. Make sure that you don’t over hydrate or you might end up needing to go to the bathroom during your run.
Drinking While on the Run
It is critical that you drink sufficient water throughout your run as this will sustain your stamina and allow you to perform optimally. To do this, it is best to time your drinking at regular intervals.
As mentioned earlier, there are a lot of factors that may influence your fluid intake. It may not be be the best to drink to thirst as studies have proven that the sensation of thirst or one’s drive to seek water, as well as one’s natural drinking behavior are driven by several intrinsic and extrinsic factors. For instance, by the time that you feel thirsty, your body might have already used up much water and you are in fact already dehydrated.
Drinking to thirst vs. drinking ad libitum
If you consume water whenever and whatever volume you want to (also called drinking ad libitum), experts impressed that you will have more time to think about your training and competition rather than continuously get distracted with your need to take a sip as you consider both internal and external factors that may influence your “thought” need to drink water.
This will also prevent the risk of overhydrating, which can lead to a serious condition called hyponatremia. Hyponatremia is a condition when the blood’s sodium level is depleted due to an excessive fluid intake.
Set your timer to alarm you to drink 6 to 8 ounces every 15-20 minutes. During longer workouts, it is recommended that you include a sports drink to replace lost sodium and other minerals (electrolytes). The carbohydrates and electrolytes present in the sports drink will also help your body absorb the fluids quicker.
For workouts or training, you will need to bring one of the best water bottles for running so you can sip smartly as needed. There are several brands that offer features such as the ability to retain the beverage temperature for about 12 to 24 hours, drip resistant, break resistant, add-on carrying belt or strap, and so on. Amazon.com is one of the best places to search for the best brands and make for your requirements.
As much as you will need constant hydration while on the run, you’d also need to replace lost fluids with water or a sports drink after your run. You may need to weigh yourself before and after you run to determine the fluids that you have lost throughout the training or the race. You will need to consume 20 to 24 fluid ounces of water for every pound lost. Check the color of your urine. If it is still dark yellow after your run, you need to keep rehydrating.
As noted, replacing the fluids that you lose throughout an activity is essential to maintaining an optimum output whatever you are doing. Just drink enough but never over-hydrate. This will also ensure that you will get the best out of exercising.