With another May Bank holiday on our doorstep and after such a scorcher in Warwickshire earlier this month, here in Leamington Spa we’re gearing up for another cracking three-day-weekend of outdoor fun and activities. But with all this hot weather (don’t laugh), we were wondering, are you taking on enough water?
We all know that we have to drink water, but do we really know the full benefits or how much you should be drinking and how often? After exercise, we all feel the need to rehydrate, but are you taking on water before and during your activities too?
Water regulates your body temperature, lubricates joints and helps transport nutrients for energy and health. A lack of water in your system can lead to fatigue, poor decision making, or even muscle cramps and dizziness. Whether you’re a serious athlete or just walking for recreation, it’s important to make sure you get the right amount of water. If you’re planning to take the family out on a trek or hike then you need to make sure they’re well-hydrated too. Keeping young children hydrated is particularly important, so plan for the surprise summer heat that so often catches people out.
How much water should you be drinking?
The human body is more than 50% water, so keeping your H2O levels at their optimum is essential for your brain and muscles to operate at their best – and that even affects you back in the office on Tuesday morning too! Think about your last hangover for a second. Alcohol dehydrates us, makes us feel lethargic and leads to headaches and poor function. Topping up our water levels is the best way to cure it, and is one of the reasons we feel compelled to groan “I’m never drinking again.”
We want you to get the most from your outdoor lives, so here’s our quick reference guide to keeping your water levels up:
Hydration before exercise
• Drink about 15-20 fl oz, 2-3 hours before exercise (That’s a small 33cl bottle of Evian in new money!)
• Drink 8-10 fl oz (half a small Evian) about 10-15 min before your exercise or activity to make sure you’re fully topped up. Other bottled water is available!
Hydration during exercise
• Drink 8-10 fl oz every 10-15 min during exercise like running or cycling. (That’s another half bottle of small water.)
• If exercising longer than 90 minutes, drink 8-10 fl oz of a sports drink every 15 - 30 minutes.
Hydration after exercise
• If possible, weigh yourself before and after. The average body (that’s around 160 pounds or 11.5 stone if you’re interested) becomes dehydrated when it loses just over 2% of its normal hydrated body weight.
• As a rule of thumb, you should replace 16-24 oz of water per pound lost*.
• Always replace your body’s liquids as soon as possible after exercise.
Also note that at high altitude your fluid loss is greater and therefore increases your need to rehydrate.
Blimey, who knew drinking could be so complicated?
With all that in mind I bet you’re wondering how on earth you’re going to carry a measuring jug, a water carrier, a stop watch, a cup, and also have something to pack it all into? Well don’t worry, because the clever people at Camelbak have a solution to this.
Camelbak manufacture sports backpacks with built-in bladders so you can keep on trekking without the need to riffle through your pack every 15-20 minutes for water. Fitted with a special tube which sits conveniently on your shoulder, (much like a large sports straw) you don’t need to worry about forgetting to take on water. And, as it’s so simple and accessible, and there’s still ample room for all your kit and technology too!
Not only do Camelbak products ensure you’re well watered, but you won’t be wasting plastic bottles every time you go out either. Camelbaks are completely re-usable, so they’re better for the environment that we all love to be out in. Are you worried that your kids won’t want to be carrying a water bladder on their backs? Camelbak have designed these brilliant kid’s water bottles too. With a retractable spout (to stop spillages) and brilliantly-bright designs, they’ll be sure to want to keep their levels topped up too - even if they prefer being dinosaurs to camels!
We know how important it is to stay hydrated during any exercise, and we stock an array of equipment to help you stay well watered. Drop into Lockwood’s to see our full range and we’ll talk water and hydration over a glass or two (of water!)
*Source Sawka M.N., Burke L.M., Eichner E.R., Maughan R.J., Montain S.J., Stachenfeld N.S. Exercise and Fluid Replacement." Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 39 (2007): 377-390.