Even though there are many benefits to keeping well hydrated, drinking enough water each day isn’t always as easy as it sounds. Sometimes you just don’t feel thirsty. You have a busy day ahead of you. Or you quite simply forget to hydrate. Believe it or not, the majority of my clients didn’t drink nearly enough water when they first started training. Neither did I for that matter!
What helped me make good hydration a priority was reminding myself of all the benefits, naturally flavouring my water, and having a goal to aim for each day.
Once you successfully meet your water intake goal for one week the positive results you notice will encourage you to make hydration a top priority!
You may already know that your body is made up of 60% water. Your cells, your blood, your tissues and your organs are all primarily composed of water! As a result, all of the body’s processes are improved from good hydration.
What are the benefits of good hydration?
- Keeping well hydrated boosts your immune system. Help your immune system do what it does best, keep you healthy, by meeting your water goal each day. You know what they say, 2 litres a day keeps the doctor away!
- Meeting your daily water goal is a mood-booster; it’ll help you feel happy all day long.
- Improves energy levels and wards off fatigue.
- Helps prevent and relieve headaches which are often caused by dehydration.
- Promotes weight-loss by helping curb your appetite between meals and by keeping you feeling full longer after meals.
- Flushes out toxins and puts you at a reduced risk for kidney stones and UTI’s (urinary tract infections).
- It keeps you regular; staying well hydrated is a great natural method of preventing constipation.
- Improves concentration and helps you stay alert and focussed on your tasks.
- Reduces your risk of blemishes and improves the appearance of your skin.
- Proper hydration improves physical performance. Make the most of your workout by hydrating well and helping your body regulate your temperature. You’ll feel much stronger and more capable during your workout if you’re keeping up with your water intake. Exercising after a day of poor hydration can result in reduced performance due to muscle cramps, feeling fatigued, and a lack of motivation to complete your workout.
The following are some of my favourite water-infusion flavour combinations. You’ll notice that there are no quantities for the ingredients. You can’t go wrong, just adjust the quantity to increase the intensity as desired.
During pregnancy when I was suffering from heart-burn and nausea I would boil ginger and drink the warm ginger infused water pretty much everyday. With the added lemon it makes a great morning drink, especially if you’re waking up early and your tummy is a little unsettled. Simply boil the ginger for 5 minutes and then add the lemon slices. You can also try cooling the the infused ginger lemon water in the fridge to enjoy over ice.
This flavour combo takes the least amount of time to infuse the water. Simply add the chopped strawberry and orange slices to cold water and enjoy within minutes!
Such a relaxing combination. This one is a milder combo that can be made in bulk and even left to infuse overnight for a more intense cucumber flavour.
Nothing says summer like delicious watermelon. When you’re really not thirsty, but you know you still have a ways to go on your water goal, this combo will definitely be easy to drink!
Watermelon Cucumber Lemon
Watermelon and cucumber is a refreshing pairing and the lemon adds just the right amount of tang. It tastes like a warm summer day. A great flavour combo infused in sparkling water too!
Strawberry Mint Lime
Perhaps the yummiest of all, this combo is also delicious with sparkling water. It was one of my goto party drinks during pregnancy.
How much water you should be drinking each day depends on your height, weight, activity level and gender.
On average the daily requirement is 2 litres, that’s around 8.5 cups of water each day.
This calculator will help you figure out a more personalized goal by taking into account other variables like whether or not you are breast-feeding for example.
Tips on Reaching Your Daily Water Goal
- Apps like MyFitnessPal have a water tracking function that will keep you motivated and on track throughout the day.
- Start first thing in the morning, don’t wait until you’re thirsty!
- A great way to help you reach your goal is to invest in a large reusable water bottle that you can take with you everywhere you go. Measure how many cups your bottle holds so you know how many times you need to refill it throughout the day to reach your goal.
- Put a rubber band on your water bottle after you finish it off. At the end of the day count the rubber bands on your bottle to help you remember how many times you refilled it.
Remember that coffee, tea, and alcohol all have dehydrating effects. When consuming these beverages it’s even more important to focus on meeting your daily water intake goal. Also, note that when you are completing vigorous exercise or are suffering from vomiting or diarrhea increase your daily water goal to compensate for the loss of fluids.
Fun Fact: While writing this post I completed two water bottles of delightful infused water!