Beat the Heat: Stay Hydrated!

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Bottled Water

I know, I Know! A blog post about the heat already? Personally, I was thinking the same thing. As I write this, it’s June 1st and we have had about 3 days with temperatures over 15 degrees. But you needn’t worry. Within a month we will all be complaining that “she’s splittin’ the rocks outside” and the humidity “is enough to kill ya”. For many of us, this is an uncomfortable time of the year to work out. Many buildings do not have air conditioning and the humidity certainly does seem to instantaneously zap your strength.

So what are you options to deal with the heat and humidity? Perhaps you think that quitting training for the summer might help. While this may seem like a comfortable solution, you certainly aren’t going to make many gainz this summer if the only bicep curls you do involve lifting a beer can to your mouth. Well, you will make some gains but not the type that you will want to show off in all those sleeveless shirts and dresses you bought for the sunny summer days.

So obviously quitting isn’t actually an option but what can you do?

Make sure you stay hydrated!!

Okay, easy enough, but how much should you drink? Maybe you heard on Dr. Oz that you should drink 8 glasses of water per day. This is a good start but it is more of a recommendation for the “general population”, you know, the kind of people that get no regular physical activity.

The amount of water that an active individual should drink is dependent on the amount of weight they lose through perspiration (sweating) each workout. To determine an exact amount, you could weigh yourself before and after the workout, note the difference and adjust your water intake accordingly. Seem complex? That’s because it is! Too simplify, a man weighing between 180-200 pounds should drink about 400 mL of water every 20 minutes during exercise. A woman weighing between 130-150 pounds should drink about 300 mL of water every 20 minutes. This will likely feel like too much water. It doesn’t matter though, thirst is a poor indicator of hydration level.

The Take Home Message

To keep exercising in the summer, ensure you stay properly hydrated
General guidelines suggest 8 glasses of water per day
This is not enough for an individual engaging in strenuous physical activity
For Men: Drink 400 mL every 20 minutes during exercise
For Women: Drink 300 mL every 20 minutes during exercise

Prepared for the JKC blog by Coach Thomas

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