Water makes up 70% of your body and is vital to life. Despite that fact, many people take in an amazingly small amount of it each day. Everyone has head that you should drink 8 glasses of water a day, but is that true for everyone? At what point should you be worried about having too much?
Staying Hydrated Through The Day
The first thing that you need to think about is how much water you drink each day as it is. For a lot of people, all that matters is drinking gallons just before the race. In fact, the amount that you take in the days and weeks before is even more important. Even if you feel that your body needs lots of water just before a race, it will handle that water much better if it is used to drinking plenty of water.
The 8 glasses a day rule is great for a lot of people, but in general you need to drink a glass when you wake up, before you go to bed, and anytime you are thirsty throughout the day. Never being dehydrated in the first place is the best thing to keep in mind if you are a runner.
During Your Run
During the actual run, drink anytime that you are thirsty. Both over drinking and under drinking water are possible during a run, but if you drink when you are thirsty you won’t ever run that risk. As a general rule, however, 4-6 ounces of water for each 20 minute segment of your run will be enough. The faster you run and the longer your run, that rate should increase, though. If you go over 90 minutes you should also take in drinks that feature electrolytes.
Researchers have found that about 27 ounces of water can be ideal for a marathon, although many people recommend much more. Drinking a little more than you need to get rid of your thirst is the best way to go, but for a standard, try out this measurement as a part of your training.
Your Sweat Rate
If you want to take it to another level, your sweat rate should be taken into account. 1 to 4 quarts an hour of water loss through sweat is common and you can find the measurement by weighing yourself before and after a timed run. One pound of weight loss should equal about 1 pint of lost water. You need to replace that amount each run. This is very important to some people, although you won’t have to worry about this if you don’t suspect that you have any problem or feel that you are not willing to obsess over it.
At the end of the day, water is important to everyone and, while the specific amounts that are needed can vary, most people will have to take in a steady amount of water without over hydrating. Over hydration can cause a long list of severe side effects, but by simply replacing your lost water you can increase your performance by an incredible amount.
This article was written for RunnersGoal.com by James S., a guest author.