The importance of hydration

Exercising is important in life for health of mind and body, but there are also other things that are just as equally if not even more important. For example, the most essential nutrient for our body: water! Water makes up over fifty percent of our body’s cells. We use water through every movement that we make.

Water is essential for every body function so we can see why staying hydrated all day is such an important health factor. Many people spend most of their day dehydrated and don’t even know it.

Do you ever have headaches randomly? Ever find that you’re tired even though you’ve had enough sleep the night before? Did you know that if you’re dehydrated then your body struggles to regulate its temperature, as a result heat stroke as well as other health issues can occur. Having said this, it makes sense that drinking water both pre, intra and post workout is very important.

Drinking water before exercising helps prevent muscle cramps and allows for better muscle contractions as well as gives you a boost for your exercise. You lose a lot of water during exercise so staying hydrated intra workout keeps you from dehydrating. Hydrating after your workout helps bring your body’s temperature back to normal, but it also helps your muscles recover quicker as the water transports nutrients to the muscle.

If you are weight training, I would recommend using a Branched Chain Amino Acid (BCAA) drink. This is due to the fact that BCAAs act as nitrogen oxide carriers which assist the muscles in synthesizing other amino acids needed for anabolic muscle action. BCAAs stimulate production of insulin by circulating blood sugar to be taken up by the muscle cells and used as a source of energy.

BCAAs are both anabolic and anti-catabolic because of their ability to increase protein synthesis, facilitate the release of hormones and help maintain a favourable testosterone ratio. And to make things better you can mix your BCAA with your water allowing your body to get the best of both worlds. I take my BCAAs both intra and post workout for the best result.

Ideally, we should all drink about three litres of water a day but actually the amount of water intake varies from person to person. Persons’ size in weight and muscle and how much they perspire all have to be taken into account. So generally it is usually more than this amount. It is also not the healthiest choice to drink all the water in one go and wait for the next day. The best way is to continuously sip water throughout the entire day to keep the water levels in your body stable. But this is tricky, because we don’t all remember to drink our water. So in closing here is a tip to help.

Keep a bottle handy. Have a water bottle or a couple water bottles that are filled and ready to go for each day. Take them with you and keep them nearby like in your hand or on your desk – really close. Having the water close will help you remember to drink it and when it’s finished, refill and let the process continue. Stay hydrated my friends.

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