Proper Hydration- Before, During and After Your Exercise Routine
Do you know everything about proper hydration, when you should drink water and when you shouldn’t, when exercising? Maybe after workout when you take a big sip of water you end up with stomach pains?
Proper hydration is the key for a healthy body. When your body is properly hydrated your blood level is at the right consistency and the blood efficiently distribute hormones, nutrients and antibodies through your body and at the same time it removes toxins.
But when you are dehydrated, your heart has to work harder in order to supply every cell with fresh oxygen, all because of the reduced blood volume. And let’s not forget, hydration will also help you to better perform your workout routine.
As you sweat during exercising, you also sweat out electrolytes. Drinking water will help in delivering new electrolytes to your muscle cells so you can perform your exercises at an increasing level and you will also reduce the risk of injury because your joints will be lubricated. Drinking the right amount of water will regulate body temperature. Here are a few tips to properly hydrate your body:
You should keep in mind this rule: 1-2 hours before your exercise routine start, you should drink at least 2 cups of water. If exercising in the morning is a part of your routine, in the early morning when you get out of bed you should drink immediately 2 cups of water. This will hydrate your body and flush any toxins after a night of sleep. In 15-30 minutes before you start, drink another cup of water then stop drinking so you can give your body time to absorb the liquid.
Depending on the length and intensity of your workout, your hydration need will definitely change. It is smart to consume small sips of water during exercise in order to prevent stomach pains. The general rule is to consume ½ to 1 ½ cups of water every 15 minutes, taking small sips of water during this 15 minutes duration.
This is the time to restore your hydration levels. Drink as much water as your body need and then a little more. The color of your urine is truly the best indicator of your hydration levels. Ideally it will be clear light yellow color, but if it is dark yellow, then you should know that you need to drink more water. The only exception to this indicator is if you have taken any supplements or vitamins that can change the urine color, such as vitamin B. Really this is the best measure of your hydration needs after you workout.
Another trick is to weight yourself before and after your exercise routine. Most likely your weight will be a bit lighter after exercise and this weight loss is due to the amount of hydration you lost while working out. You must rehydrate so drink 2 ½ – 3 cups of water for every pound you lost. Within 1-2 hours after you finish your workout you must replenish any lost water. One last thing – if you consider yourself a competitive athlete, I recommend you to look into a hydration program that is suited to your needs.