Written By Nicole Wilkins
It’s no secret that most of us are in the midst of one of the hottest summers in recent memory. Which means, drinking enough water is more important than ever. But it’s not just during times of extreme heat that we all need to make hydration a priority.
Our bodies are made up of over 60% water, and we lose a lot of that on a daily basis – which is why you can’t survive for more than a few days without it. With added exercise, my recommendation is to aim for 4-6 liters a day (coffee doesn’t count!).
Besides the life-giving properties of H20 💧, here are 6 reasons you need to stay well hydrated – especially in the heat.
1. STAY COOL
Your body is always working to maintain its core temperature (around 98.6 degrees) and one of the ways it does this when faced with hotter than normal conditions is to sweat. 😰Not drinking enough water compounded with increased sweating means your body can’t replenish fluids quickly enough to regulate it’s core temperature effectively, which could lead to heat exhaustion – or worse.
Have you ever felt tired and unable to focus, especially in the middle of the day? Chances are you are dehydrated. You may not know this, but if you only drink water when you’re thirsty, you are already dehydrated.
Thirst is your body telling you it needs water. Water is critical for bodily functions and if you’re not getting enough of it, you’ll start feeling tired, dizzy, have dry mouth, and, well, feel like crap! I drink constantly throughout the day and I’ve been doing it for so long that it’s automatic behavior. Basically, I always have water with me everywhere I go! 🏃♀️
3. BE REGULAR
I’ve noticed that when I don’t drink my usual amount of water, I tend to not be as “regular.” Water keeps your bowels functioning properly and when you don’t get enough of it, it takes it from your stools, which makes it harder to move things along. So with all things being equal in your diet, if you’re not as regular as you’d like to be, you might not be drinking as much water as you think you are. 😉
4. HUNGRY OR JUST THIRSTY?
When your body is running on low fluids, it can be easy to confuse the symptoms for dehydration, such as lethargy, headache, dizziness, etc., with hunger. After all, when you’re low on energy, your first thought is usually, “I need food.” But you might actually be dehydrated, so try drinking water and see how you feel in 10-15 minutes. 🚰
5. GET PUMPED
There’s nothing like a great pump to let you know you’re getting a great workout, but you have to be well-hydrated to get that satisfying pump. Water increases blood volume and fluid in the veins to transport nutrients and amplify the pump in your muscles. 💪 And your muscles themselves are over 70% water, so to get good contractions and optimize overall performance, you need to drink enough water before, during and after your workout.
6. HEALTHY GLOW
Water is essential for proper organ function and your skin is a major organ. Staying hydrated flushes toxins from your body and transports nutrients to skin cells to keep it healthy. When I’m drinking enough water, I’ve noticed that my skin has a more supple quality when compared to when I’m not. I do believe that adequate water intake can help in maintaining a healthy glow and gives a youthful appearance to your skin. 👍
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One of the biggest names in the fitness industry, Nicole Wilkins is a world-record holding four-time Figure Olympia Champion and 2012 IFPA Personal Trainer of the Year. Nicole earned her BA in Wellness, Health Promotion and Injury Prevention at Oakland University. The owner and founder of nPower Nutrition, Nicole has helped thousands of people start living a healthier lifestyle and reach their fitness goals.