I often get the question, "how much water should I drink?"
Well, there are a lot of factors that determine the answer to that question. But I will tell you this... if you don't drink enough water, you WILL NOT get results! I repeat, you WILL NOT get results.
You can have everything else in your program perfect but without enough water for all your body's systems, you can forget about losing weight, building muscle or whatever else your goal may be.
I'm astonished how often I meet with people for an Action Plan Consultation (our in-depth, start-up appointment for new members here at Realistic Fitness), that drink very little or no water at all!
So let's get into all the things that water will do for you and then I'll give you a "rule of thumb" for how much.
1. Water creates volume in the muscle cells. If you want to increase metabolism, make sure your muscles are filled like water balloons. A deflated muscle is inefficient and lacks the ability to increase the amount of calories you can burn.
2. Muscles with enough water stimulate a cascade of secondary endocrine (hormone) affects that benefit weight loss. HUH? In other words, your body realizes it has what it needs to accelerate calorie burn because the muscle cells have what they need to work properly.
3. Clients that struggle with portion sizes in their nutrition plan (I didn't say diet, see my previous post), I will add water at the beginning and during a meal to help them feel more "full". Trust me, this works on so many levels I'll have to write another post just to cover it!
4. Blood pressure issues? Blood thinners? Well, water naturally "thins" the blood making the whole cardiovascular system flow better. Pretty simple math here... thicker fluid (dehydrated) is harder to pump then thinner fluid (hydrated). That's all I have to say about that...
5. When we burn fat, ostensibly the goal for most people, we release a lot of toxins into the body for two reasons: First, burning body fat itself (lipolysis) is a very dirty process. Second, any toxins you have taken in creating that body fat... is stored in the body fat! Imagine if you burned a bunch of old tires in your back yard... under a tent... If we don't flush that stuff out of the body, our ability to keep burning stops.
6. If you've been living dehydrated and wonder why you feel so sluggish and tired all the time... you don't have to wonder any more. Hydrating will accelerate all the systems of the body and give you more energy. Don't believe me... try it and then get back to me. If you don't feel more energy after that, seek medical attention.
7. Studies have shown that simply drinking more water if you've been dehydrated (even moderately), your body will lose fat... yes, just from drinking enough water.
I could keep going but that should get the point across! So, back to the original question:
"How much should I drink?"
I like to give clients a good rule-of-thumb with this formula...
1/2 your body weight (in lbs) = # of ounces / day of water
Funny thing... even when people know... they often still don't do the right thing.
If you are lucky enough to live in a place that has clean drinking water available, then appreciate that and use it to take care of yourself!
Have a great day and a glass of water. I know I will!