6 Tips To Stay Hydrated During Exercise
Most people don't think about their water intake until they realize they're dehydrated. Dehydration happens when you lose more fluid than you consume. Your body is roughly 60% water and it needs to be replenished for normal kidney function and to prevent high blood pressure and intestinal problems. Not only can you become dehydrated by not drinking enough water, but also when you indulge in physical activity. If you're a fan of fitness, here are six tips to maintain hydration during exercise.
- Drink Water Before Your Workout
When you exercise, water helps you maintain the proper body temperature and lubricates your joints. This helps you reach your maximum performance comfortably. One of the most effective ways to stay hydrated while you're exercising is to drink water before your workout. Ideally, you should be consuming water throughout the day and at least one cup of water a half-hour before exercise. By hydrating ahead of time, you'll be more focused on your workout and reduce your chance of fatigue.
- Seal in Moisture
Another significant way to keep your skin hydrated is by using a body and facial moisturizer. Skin and lips can appear dry and flaky when you lose too much fluid due to exercise or when the air is dry. While creams and lotions don't provide water to the body, they do keep it locked in. Choose a quality body lotion or moisturizer that contains glycerin, hyaluronic acid or squalane. You can also keep your lips supple and full by using a delicious vanilla lip balm that contains coconut and jojoba oils.
- Keep Electrolytes Close By
If you've ever wondered if you should keep a drink close by when you exercise, the answer is yes! When you work out, you're losing fluid through sweat that needs to be put back into the body. If you're participating in an especially grueling activity, choose a beverage that contains electrolytes. Electrolytes are minerals such as sodium, calcium and potassium that balance fluids in the body. Staying hydrated while you exercise will give you an added boost of energy and will also prevent muscle cramps.
- Dress Right for Exercise
You already know you're going to sweat during a workout, but wearing the wrong clothing can turn you into a hot mess. For example, cotton absorbs sweat incredibly fast and will leave you feeling wet and uncomfortable. Polyester, which is more suited to light exercise, will end up feeling sticky during an intense workout. Instead, opt for apparel made from nylon, bamboo fiber or anything that says "moisture wicking" on the label. You'll stay dry and cool and avoid the symptoms of dehydration.
- Nosh on Hydrating Foods
While drinking water is your best bet for quenching your thirst, eating hydrating foods before and after fitness will also help. Fortunately, water-laden foods are also tasty and simple to prepare. Next time you're at the grocery store, stock up on cucumbers, lettuce, spinach and tomatoes for a refreshing salad. You'll also benefit from juicy strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, citrus and pineapple. Best of all, any of these foods can easily be chopped up and packed in your gym bag.
- Avoid the Hottest Hours of the Day
If you're working hard to stay hydrated all day, plus before and after your workout, it's time to go one step further. If you exercise outside, avoid working out during the hottest hours of the day. Even if you're in good health, exercising in the blistering heat is taxing on your body. It causes your heart rate to go up and you'll struggle to stay cool. During hot spells, switch your exercise routine to first thing in the morning or early evening. You'll feel cooler and your body will stay hydrated for a longer period.
If you exercise and aren't staying hydrated, you're putting your body at risk. By drinking enough water during your workout and staying moisturized, you'll protect yourself from exhaustion and a variety of health problems.