Hydration is the key to success when it comes to a workout of any kind. Whether you are training for a marathon, a bodybuilding show or just to feel better about yourself, you must pay close attention to your fluid intake. Dehydration is most commonly thought of in reference to the topic of hydration, but overhydration is just as common.
Are you Dehydrated?-How to tell? According to American College of Sports Medicine, dehydration occurs when weight loss greater than 2% of baseline body weight occurs during/after exercise. ACSM recommends consuming beverages with sodium and/or salted snacks to encourage fluid intake. Should dehydration occur, the recommended fluid intake is approximately 25oz per lb of bodyweight lost. A quick way to test your fluid intake is to taste your sweat. If it is extremely salty and dry, you may be dehydrated.
Proper fluid intake is determined individually and tailored to each individual based on personal factors including exercise mode, duration, weight & diet. Let's take a look at some of these factors and help tailor a hydration plan for you.
Exercise Mode-What mode of workout will you bedoing?
If you are going to do an express total body workout, your hydration will be very different from a marathon training workout. Hydration begins long before your workout. Be sure to consume fluids several hours prior to your workout session regardless of what it will entail.
Exercise Duration-How long will you beexercising?
The express total body workout may only take 30min whereas the marathon training will last for several hours. This will affect that amount of fluids needed during the workout. There is such a thing as overhydration which can lead to a variety of issues.
Participant Weight-How much? Depending on the weight/height of the participant exercising, the fluid intake will vary. The greatest way to accurately gauge a participant's fluid intake is through a mathematical calculation from the American College of Sports Medicine. The ACSM Sweat Rate calculation can help pinpoint exactly what an individual should need in regards to fluid intake for exercise.
Sweat Rate Calcuation:
Sweat Rate = (A + B) ÷ C
A = Pre-Exercise Bodyweight - Post Exercise Bodyweight (1lb = 16oz, 0.5lb = 8oz) B = Fluid Consumed During Exercise (1cup = 8oz, 1gulp = approx. 1oz) C = Exercise Duration in Hours (30min = 0.5)
During a 60min spin class, Matt drank 24oz of fluid. His pre-exercise weight was 200lbs & post exercise weight was 199.5; a 0.5lb loss.
Matt's Sweat Rate = (A + B) ÷ C A= 8oz B= 24oz C= 1hr
ACSM Fluid Replacement Recommendations: Matt should be consuming 32oz of fluid per hour of physical activity.
For your next workout, try using this formula and measure your sweat rate to ensure proper hydration.
A great way to keep your fluid intake up is to carry around a water bottle with you at all times. Some people use a gallon jug and mark off the hours in which they should be drinking that amount of water. For those less organized, try using a larger water bottle to ensure fluid intake continues throughout the day.
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