You’ve heard it time and again: Hydration, Hydration, and Hydration. But why is hydrating your body so important?
Well to start off with, the human body is largely made up of water (65–70% water by weight). Fluid is responsible for keeping your body temperature regulated, blood volume correct, ridding your body of waste products, maintaining blood pressure and so much more. It is hard enough to get through a normal day when you are dehydrated (signs include: headaches, tiredness, nausea), but even more difficult to exercise in a dehydrated state.
How to Hydrate
- Drink all day, every day. Drink before you are thirsty.
- Drink before you start. Top off your tank with 8 ounces 30 to 60 minutes before you exercise.
- Carry fluid with you during exercise, drinking 4 ounces every 15 minutes.
- Drink after you’re done. Refill your system with 16 to 20 ounces while you cool down.
- Be aware of your climate. Heat, wind, humidity or even altitude can affect your fluid needs.
- Know the signs of dehydration: nausea, dark yellow urine, dry/sticky mouth, and dizziness.
- Hand Held Water Bottles - Hand held water bottles are great for short runs. They fit in your hand, have a small storage space for your keys or a nutrition item and are easy to use.
- Hydration Packs - Hydration packs are fantastic for longer runs. They are comfortable and allow you to you to drink without taking your eyes of the trail/road. They carry plenty of water and can have storage for nutrition items, keys and a cell phone.
- Hydration Belts - Hydration belts are great if you are looking to carry water and an electrolyte replacement as the same time. They have space for multiple small water bottles that can be easily grabbed when you are ready for a drink. This is also a great option if you so not like the feel of a hydration pack.