As the summer months begin to creep in, especially here in Austin, I get asked more and more how to stay hydrated. Now before we get into some of the nitty gritty of this, please keep in mind that every body is different and therefore we all have different needs. When it comes to hydration this is an area that is subjective to the person and region we live in. For instance, I drink (try to, let's be honest I am human) roughly 2-3 gallons of water per day. To the average person this is a lot. When you factor in the fact that I have been an athlete and very active my whole life, and I live in a very hot and humid state this suddenly doesn't seem like so much.
When it comes to hydration we think water is the only way. While it is the main way there are a few other things involved that KEEP you hydrated throughout the day. Let's take a look.
For starters, we need water to help metabolize and breakdown nutrients and remove waste from the body(including fat, this is why water helps you lose weight!). When your urine is a dark yellow, that is because you are dehydrated and your urine has too much urea in it. In order to remove harmful waste and toxins in the body we need to drink plenty of water to continue to flush them out. We also lose water in our tears, sweat, feces, breath and spit. So there are multiple ways to become dehydrated throughout the day if we aren't paying attention.
Your food can be a source of hydration! Eating foods that carry electrolytes, such as cucumbers, salads, citrus, etc will help you stay hydrated throughout the day so you're not tediously drinking gallons per day. You also want to drink more than just water. Giving the body a small break for a tea or cold-pressed OJ is a great way to stay hydrated as well.
Electrolytes are an important part of hydration because they not only give an electrical charge but they transport nutrients. So keeping these in your foods and even squeezing a bit of lime into your water can really boost your hydration, especially in those hot summer months.
We also need to remember that while we all need at least one gallon of water per day, that amount changes person to person. These factors are determined by sex, age, weight, activity level and where you live. All of these affect how much water you need to stay hydrated and functioning. Let's be honest, no one wants to be dehydrated. Did you know it only takes 2% into dehydration for your brain and muscle to slow down and begin to stop functioning? That's not much! We also must remember that it takes longer to hydrate than it does to dehydrate the body.
So, the first thing we should do upon waking it drink at least one 8-ounce glass of room temperature water straight out of bed. This will also boost and jump start your hydration from the very start of your day! How amazing is that?! Remembering to do this first step, is actually a pretty great way to set the tone for your day as far as water consumption goes. You want to set yourself up for success, not failure. If you are going to workout you'll want to consume at least 2 16-ounce glass/bottles of water before beginning any rigorous activity. If you are only working out for about an hour or under, you really only need water. If you are going HAM all day, you may want to throw a NuuN tablet or some BCAAs into your water. I never really recommend a sports drink as many of them are pumped full of caffeine and/or sugar. The sugar is really what will get you. Adding that extra sugar may make it taste delicious and give you a bit of energy boost, however it also dehydrates you. So I tend to stay away from drinks like Gatorade, Poweraide, Vitamin Water. Yes even VITAMIN water is not good for you. The reason you feel you need more is that sugar is taking over baby!
Now you know the basic facts and operations of hydration. Grab your jug and mark it every hour if you need a reminder to drink. But whatever you do, drink that water daily!
Achy, stiff, throbbing pain, creaking and popping. Yes, that is the joints in your knee as you slide out of bed groggy and in a daze from your rem cycle. You think it's just the pain of getting older and aging, while you're not wrong, you are at the same time. While aging is not something we can help, getting older is. Your body gets old when you stop taking care of it, this includes the break down and deterioration of joints.
WHAT ARE JOINTS?
Joints are the connection made between the bones in your body which link the skeletal system together as a whole functional structure. They connect nearly every bone in your body and are made up of many components and parts that make them function.
WHAT ARE JOINTS MADE OF?
There are a several categories that joints fall into, they all have specific functions for aiding in movement of the skeletal system.
Okay so now we know the important parts of this post, understanding what joints are, how they are made up and how they function is important in keeping them healthy. There are MANY ways to strengthen joints before they start to breakdown and there are even ways to help reform joints and alleviate pain throughout the day whether your 30, 40, or even in your 70's.
*As a side note, I am not a doctor. Anything written here is merely of my own research and experience, these are purely options and holistic treatments for an ailment that simply needs healing.*
HOW CAN I IMPROVE MY JOINT HEALTH?
Okay, as not only a personal trainer but a baker as well, I get asked frequently which is more important; nutrition or exercise? Here's the truth, BOTH. I say this for several reasons; so let's explore these reasons, and ultimately in the end, you will always make your own choices and opinions about the power couple.
I am sure you have heard from gym rats, athletes, and bodybuilders that abs are created in the kitchen. Well, they aren't wrong. As someone who has been all three, and continues to be a couple of these things, I can in fact attest to this. Think about this for a minute, what do you eat daily? Do you workout? How long do you workout? Do you know what your caloric intake should be on a daily basis? Did you know that your body requires a certain amount of calories to function and run properly throughout the day to prevent crash and fatigue? How about the fact that particular health factors such as your blood type can play a big part in your weight gain/loss? These are all questions I have been answering to followers, friends, family and clients over the past 4 years.
I have been a foodie and, predominately, vegetarian since I was a child. Remember in the opening scenes of Ratatouille where he is explaining how the combination of flavors taste and the fire works are going off around him? That is what eating ANYTHING is like for me. Why? Mindful eating my friends.
You see, as a child I was always being told to eat quicker. I remember thinking, "but I don't want to, I like how this tastes," so I was always the last to finish. I was fine with this. I was often sick with strep or an ear infection as a child, I was also very active and just craved fruits and vegetables. My body hardly ever craved meat and when it did, after ingesting any kind of meat outside of certain pork products it would come right back up. But, as I got older, I began forcing myself to suffer through the pain of vomiting every time. I was always sick, I didn't listen to my body anymore and hardly ate anything that was not processed and packed full of chemicals and empty calories. When I got really sick at 23, all that changed, and then again at 26. I began listening to my body and started mindful eating, or meditative eating.
Okay, I know what you're thinking. "I'm not going to sit in silence with my food.... alone.... like a freak." You don't have to, mindful eating is much more than that. Not to mention some of the wonderful benefits that come with it. Let's explore these benefits, starting with mindful eating!
THE BASICS OF MINDFUL EATING:
Okay you may have noticed I stated to chew a minimum of 25 times. Yes, that's quite a bit, but there are massive benefits to doing so!
Note from the Team.
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