By our trainer Zella
For the past couple of weeks not only the popularity of the outdoor sports classes has been on the rise, so is the outdoor temperature. Staying hydrated during your outdoor summer workouts is something we should probably take a closer look at.
Giving your body enough fluids is nessessary to keep your body functioning properly and carry out vital tasks such as:
- regulating body temperature
- carrying nutrients and oxygen to your cells
- aiding digestion
- normalizing blood pressure
- maintaining electrolyte (sodium) balance
If you don't drink enough water each day, you risk becoming dehydrated. Warning signs of dehydration include:
- low blood pressure
- urine that's dark in color
So how much water should you drink?
Most healthy people need about 1.5 – 2 liters (= four to six cups) of water each day.*
But even a healthy person's water needs will vary, especially if you're losing water through sweat because you're exercising, or because you're outside on a hot day.
If you're wondering how much water you should drink before exercising the general rule is to drink 30-45 minutes before, during and after your workout. Drinking before your workout is also important because you already need to get fluids into your system in order to prevend dehydration and keep your performance high while working out.
Tips for staying hydrated
It's not just water that keeps you hydrated. All beverages containing water contribute toward your daily needs, but remember, sugary drinks can lead to weight gain and cavities and too much caffeine can give you the jitters or keep you from sleeping.
Drinking water is obviously the best choice. If you would like to have a little variety, you can add some fruit and/or herbs. Here are some water-licious recipes:
Apple Cinnamon Water:
Add some slices of apple, a cinnamon stick and ice cubes to your water.
Vary Berry Water:
Add a frozen berries of your choice and some extra ice cubes to your water.
Kiwi, Lime and Mint Water:
(not in the picture)
Add 1 kiwi in slices, half of a lime in slices, 3 twigs of mint leaves and some ice cubes to your water.
Zella van der Toorn Vrijthoff
Team Fitness USC Leiden
*There's no one- size-fits-all answer. Water intake must be individualized. If you are not sure you’re getting the right amount please check with your doctor.