If you’ve ever asked yourself “am I drinking enough water” then this post is for you!
Hydration is very important and something we all need to be familiar with (especially right now with these crazy high temps in the Midwest). So, let’s start by understanding exactly what water does for our bodies.
Water makes up anywhere between 50 and 70% of your total body weight and is required by every cell, tissue, and organ to work properly. Water helps the body filter waste (through urination, sweat, and bowel movements), regulates your body temperature, and lubricates your joints.
When we don’t drink enough water, also known as dehydration, our body struggles to perform these basic functions. Even a mild case of dehydration can affect your cognitive function (brain power) and overall energy levels.
It depends! I know this might not be the answer you were looking for but let me explain – it depends because everyone is different and factors like exercise, environment, and overall health impact your daily water needs.
The best way to tell if you are drinking enough water is to look at the color of your urine (I know it’s kind of gross but trust me, it works). You want your urine to be a light-yellow color, think lemonade, throughout the day. The light-yellow color tells you that your water intake is right where it needs to be!
Great question! Hydration has a big impact on performance levels (think minimizing muscle cramps and improving recovery time). Athletes, of all levels, should not only consume water during the day but also during exercise.
If you are exercising outside in the heat or for more than 60 minutes at a time, you’ll want to add in both electrolytes and carbs to balance out what is lost in your sweat. This could be a sports drink, powder mix, gel, or even a snack during movement. This is where sports nutrition really comes into play so make sure your fueling before, during, and after movement is highly personalized!
Want even more information on hydration? Click here to download the Hydration Fact Sheet from Team USA. It even includes a urine color chart. Now stay hydrated, friends!