Roughly two-thirds of our body is made up of water. Losing as little as 1% of our body’s water can lead to health and performance issues. That’s why keeping your body hydrated is an important aspect for everyone’s health, and even more so for athletes. The importance of hydration can not be understated. And anyone who has ever visited Baton Rouge in the summertime knows how hot and humid it can get. Don’t let dehydration from the summer heat keep you from performing at your best!
What are the Signs of Dehydration?
Dehydration occurs when your body doesn’t have as much water as it needs to function properly. It is a common occurrence, but in severe cases, dehydration can lead to death. Here are some warning signs that your body is becoming dehydrated:
- Intense Thirst
- Dry Mouth
- Dizziness and/or Lightheadedness
- Minimal Urine
- Muscle Cramps
- Lack of Sweating
How Much Water Should I Drink?
There are no exact rules, but a common rule of thumb is to drink 64 oz. of water daily, or 8 glasses of water in 8 ounce servings. However, a number of factors can affect this amount, such as your activity level, the heat, medications and much more. So, in addition to regular water consumption, be sure to replace the water lost during exercise. This means additional water consumption before, during and after exercise. Caffeine also leads to water loss, so be sure to replace the water lost from drinking caffeinated beverages. For example, for every cup of coffee, you should drink additional water to maintain hydration.
The best rule of thumb is to listen to your body, and learn the warning signs of dehydration. A simple way to check your hydration level is the color of urine. If you are hydrated, you will have light-colored urine. But, if you’re dehydrated, your urine will have a dark or amber color. For more tips on staying hydrated, check out this article on staying hydrated during exercise.
What About Sports Drinks?
For most people, the only thing needed to stay hydrated is water. For high-intensity exercises such as running a marathon, a sports drink with potassium and electrolytes can be beneficial. However, in most cases, the added sugar in most sports drinks outweighs any of the benefits. The amount of calories in sports drinks can also be a problem for many individuals looking to lose weight.
Come Workout With Us
You can always get out the the summer heat and enjoy a workout with us in a clean, cool, comfortable environment. Stop by today and get out of the heat! If you are not a member, get a free pass and try us out for 7 days!