The Importance of Hydration, Rehydration and Water Consumption
Often underestimated, staying hydrated is one of those simple rules, that deserves to be highlighted, for too often its importance gets lost in the shuffle of supplements and lifting techniques. It is also important to know when is the best time to drink water. Most of us probably have gone through our lives thinking, anytime is a good time to drink water. Afterall, it doesn’t contain any calories, and the consensus is that people don’t drink enough water as a whole.
In this article we will discuss rehydration, its importance in training and provide tips for optimal water consumption.
How to Rehydrate – Timing is key.
The timing of water consumption around meals:
- Drink a glass of water approximately 30 minutes before a meal. This is meant to help the digestive process.
- It is not advisable to drink too soon before or after a meal, as the water has the potential to dilute digestive juices.
- Do not drink water with your meal.
- Drink water an hour after your meal allowing the body to absorb its nutrients first.
The timing of water consumption outside of mealtime.
- Drinking a glass of water after waking up is a great way to activate the internal organs. This water will also facilitate removal of toxins before you indulge in your first meal of the day.
- Drinking a glass of water before slinking into a bath can help lower ones blood pressure.
- Before going to bed of a night it is advisable to drink one glass of water an hour before bedtime. This will benefit you in its ability to replenish fluid loss during the night.
Why is it so important to keep hydrated?
Keeping hydrated is very important as it serves a greater purpose within the body, contributing to a multitude of vital functions.
- Healthy Blood Flow
- Kidney Function
- Sodium Balance
- Potassium Balance
- Electrolyte Balance
- Skin Health
- Healthy Bones, Teeth and Joints
- Clean Mind and Body
- Thirst is usually a good indicator
- Check the colour of your urine. If it is darker in colour, this is a telltale sign.
- Whenever you are training, you should know that additional hydration will be needed.
Tips for hydrating during workouts
- Approximately 2 to 3 hours before working out, it is suggested that you drink 2-3 cups of fluid.
- During your workout, try to consume a cup of fluids every 20 minutes. Heavy sweating will be better served with a drink containing higher levels of electrolytes.
- When working out in hot climates, ensure that more fluids are consumed.
- Sip water and refrain from drinking too much water at once. It has been shown to slow down digestion and absorption of fluids.
One of the most unassuming, and underestimated, water is one of the most critical anabolic nutrients you can consume. Longer activities or those done in humid climates should rehydrate with a beverage that has added electrolytes.
Electrolytes include sodium and potassium. When electrolytes are lost during exercise there is an increased risk of experiencing: muscle cramps, fatigue and mental confusion.