By: Sarah McWilliams
For athletes, one of the best things about summer is getting to train outside. But the worst is trying to stay hydrated during the hot summer months. Especially in water activities like swimming, you don’t realize how much water you lose because the pool masks the sweat.
We’ve all heard the old adage: drink 64 ounces of fluid a day. But that generic number doesn’t account for weight, height or activity level. Essentially, you need to drink enough so you’re never thirsty. To maintain hydration during the hot summer months, try out these five tips.
1. Skip the Soda
It seems pretty silly to drink your calories, and with all the empty calories in soda, it seems even sillier. Even if you drink diet soda, you still receive absolutely no health benefits and you’re putting unnatural chemicals into your body. Although there is no evidence that diet soda causes dehydration, some studies show that people who drink soda instead of water limit their body’s ability to maintain hydration. Skip the soda and reach for sparkling water in its place.
2. Eat Your Hydration
If you absolutely hate drinking water, there are still ways to sneak in that extra hydration, especially during the summer when you need it most. In addition to drinking water throughout the day, try including foods with high water content as well. Watermelon, peaches, melons, celery, asparagus and zucchini are all have high water content and can help keep you hydrated.
3. Keep Track
You may be surprised how little or how much water you consume throughout the day. Although a food diary may seem like a huge chore, keeping a tally of your water consumption is much more manageable. During the summer especially, you should be having eight glasses throughout the day, at the very least. Keep track to make sure you’re hitting your mark. Eventually, it will become second nature.
4. Have It Handy
You’re more likely to drink it if it’s there. Although many people won’t think to get up and go get some, if they have it next to them they’ll sip on it throughout the day. Buy a portable water bottle, or better yet, a water bottle with its own filtration system (yes, they make these now), making tap water taste like Evian. Now, there really are no excuses!
5. Spice It Up
If you absolutely hate the taste, or lack thereof, of water, then spice it up with fresh fruit to add some flavor to the bland beverage. Cucumbers, watermelon, and lemon are all easy additions and can make drinking water a little more fun.
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