6 Hydration Mistakes You’re Making During Exercise

6 Hydration Mistakes You’re Making During Exercise

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The intensity of your workout can increase the chance of becoming dehydrated if don’t replenish the fluids that are lost through sweat. Avoid these slip-ups prior to or during and after your exercise.

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Hydration is essential throughout the day particularly when exercising.


If you do not drink enough fluids prior to or during and after exercising, especially when you’re sweating a lot, then you might be dehydrated. Dehydration “plays an enormous impact on physical and mental well-being,” says Jamie Hickey who is a NASM certified personal trainer and a registered dietitian with Truism Fitness in Philadelphia. If you’re dehydrated “everything that’s in your body from your muscles to your cells, to your cognitive functioning is affected” Hickey says, noting that dehydration can cause fatigue and decrease motivation.


Marni Sumbal RDN, the sports dietitian with a base within Greenville, South Carolina, states that drinking enough water aids in maximizing the performance of your exercise. “It helps blood flow more effectively and can aid in the body’s cooling process,” she says. “It could help reduce the feeling of exercise, which can help you feel more relaxed.”


The amount you’ll require to drink is contingent according to the temperature-humidity, temperature, and intensity level, according to the Mayo Clinic. One of the most effective methods of monitoring your hydration levels is to pay attention to how dark your urine is, Hickey says. If you’re hydrated, your urine will be light yellow, similar to wheat’s color. If you’re dehydrated, your urine will appear dark. Also, you’ll have less frequent urination in the event that you’ve not had enough to drink.


Other symptoms of dehydration include excessive thirst, dizziness, and confusion According to Mayo Clinic.


Find out the most frequently-made exercise hydration errors you need to be aware of.


1. You’re not drinking enough alcohol before, during, or after Exercise

Sumbal suggests that most people drink 17 to 20 pounds (oz) in water within the two hours prior to exercising and 8 oz around 20-30 minutes prior to when they begin exercising. When you exercise, you should aim to drink 8 oz of water each 10-15 minutes. Then take a drink of 12 to 24 ounces of water. The more sweat you’ve produced during your workout it’s more fluids will require to replenish, Sumbal says.


2. You don’t plan how you’ll Hydrate

If you’re going for an extended walk or jogging, running, or even swimming, you might not have water on hand or not want to carry an extra bottle. However, relying on the water fountains on your way to keep well-hydrated is not a good idea, Sumbal says.


“Most often the thing that happens is that people are dehydrated and they then end up drinking a lot of water following their workout session] at which point it’s too late,” the doctor says.


Instead, think about how you’ll drink water throughout your workout. You should also create a plan to carry drinks or water along with you. Some people prefer to use fanny bags or carry a backpack that is light. For runners, it is possible to use the water bottle in a portable container. If you’re on a bike and have a bottle holder mounted on your bicycle, use it, but make sure you clean and refill your water bottle during your workout.


3. You Don’t Replenish Lost Electrolytes

A typical person loses about half one liter of sweat every 30 minutes of exercise, Hickey says. The figure could rise to as high as three to four Liters of sweat every hour, based on the metabolic rate, based on the research done in the past.


The majority of sweat is water but it also contains essential electrolytes, according to Ace Fitness. They include sodium chloride and magnesium. and calcium. Electrolytes are mineral components of the body, which are present in bodily fluids like urine and blood, as per MedlinePlus. They aid in the management of a variety of bodily functions, such as the absorption of nutrients, elimination of waste, and distribution of water throughout the body.


The effects of vomiting, shivering and diarrhea all can cause the loss of electrolytes, which can make you feel thirsty or create muscle spasms and cramps according to the Cleveland Clinic notes. The electrolyte sodium is what your body is losing in the largest amounts when you sweat therefore “if you’re sweating excessively it’s important to replenish your sodium intake to ensure that you stay hydrated” Hickey says.


Those who exercise regularly for an hour or more or who exercise in hot temperatures should drink drinks for sports to restore electrolytes Sumbal says. However, it’s crucial to be aware of the best option, otherwise, you risk making another water-related error.


4. You don’t pick the right Sports Drink

One of the key factors to replenishing electrolytes lost is choosing the sports you drink with care. A lot of sports drinks, like Gatorade and Pedialyte, are made to help maintain the electrolyte balance of your body when you sweat a lot. There are also tablets and electrolyte powder that you can mix into a bottle with water at most drugstores. Coconut water replenishes electrolytes lost like potassium sodium, potassium, and manganese according to Mayo Clinic (but look at the label to confirm the number of electrolytes and the amount, which is different by brand).


Many consumers opt for sugar-free low-calorie or calorie-free sports drinks that are typically found at the supermarket. “But the drink you choose for your sport should provide you with carbohydrates and sodium, and you’ll need to ensure that those ingredients are presently included in the drink,” Sumbal says. “If you’re drinking a sporting drink, you have a reason for it.”


Beware of highly caffeinated energy drinks that are high in sugar, like Red Bull and Monster, that can cause an increase in blood pressure, anxiety, restlessness, and greater risk of dehydration according to previous research.


Remember that children and adults alike should drink beverages for sports instead of water when exercising hard for more than an hour, according to UnityPoint Health.


5. There isn’t enough Magnesium in your diet.

As electrolytes, magnesium can help maintain hydration levels in recovery as noted by Caroline Thomason, RDN, CDCES Nutrition coach who is based in Northern Virginia. Many people aren’t getting the recommended intake of magnesium, particularly men who are over 70 or teenagers, as per the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. If this is the case, think about including more magnesium-rich foods in your diet. Choose legumes as well as seeds, nuts whole grains, milk, leafy greens, and yogurt. Fortified foods, such as cereals fortified with magnesium, can aid in increasing the amount of magnesium you consume.


Magnesium supplements can provide advantages for your workout as well. If you’re experiencing muscle cramps or leg cramps the use of magnesium powder may assist in relaxing muscles, Thomason advises. Research published in Scientifica in 2017 discovered that, although magnesium can help to ease leg cramps, more research is needed to verify the effects.) Benefit: Other research, published in Nutrients in the year 2017 has suggested that magnesium supplements may help increase exercise performance, which includes the strength of your grip and lower-leg power. However, more research is needed to confirm the potential benefits.


It is available in a variety of drugstores. Mix it with drinking water, and then drink cold or hot. You will also find magnesium in a variety of multivitamin-mineral supplements as well as other supplements for your diet.


Remember, however, that the recommended upper limit for magnesium supplementation amounts to 350 milligrams (mg) daily for both children and adults 9-18, as per the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. Excessing this amount could cause nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal cramping. Extremely high intakes of magnesium can cause irregular heartbeats or even cardiac arrest. Magnesium supplements can interfere with certain medications that are used to treat bisphosphonates and antibiotics. diuretics acid reflux and Peptic ulcer medications, as well as zinc supplements. Consult your physician when you’re considering using a magnesium supplement, particularly if you are taking any of these medicines.


6. You Drink Alcohol After a Workout

Perhaps you want to relax after your day by savoring the fridge and sipping a cold beverage. If your happy hour comes after an exercise session, you should reconsider. Alcohol consumption after exercising is not a good idea, Sumbal states: “Alcohol is not a water-rehydrating drink. It does not have the proper nutritional profile to function as a recuperative drink.” Alcohol, in fact, causes dehydration, according to that the Cleveland Clinic.


Don’t drink alcohol following your workout. Instead, you can opt for an ice-cold glass of water or a sports drink, or even a glass of milk. As mentioned above coconut water and electrolyte drinks are great alternatives for drinks to drink after a workout.

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