Summer is here with a vengeance so staying hydrated is even more important. However, do you know why you need to drink a ton of water all year long?
Let me tell you my story.
One day a few summers ago I was in a Crossfit workout. It was hot and I was feeling a bit tired. My muscles were feeling fatigued, but I thought that I ate something at lunch that might be messing with me. (Pasta and bread are bad ideas on workout days for me). As I worked through the workout, I found myself feeling nauseas and a bit dizzy. All of a sudden, my heart began beating at a rapid pace, like it was trying to beat twice at one time. It freaked me out! I decided it was time to go to the heart doctor and get myself checked out. Long story short, I'm in great health, no issues with my heart or circulatory system.
So what happened? Why did I have those symptoms?
Plain and simple. I wasn't hydrated. I thought I drank enough that day. I was wrong. In fact, I had been having some issues for the previous month or so with my chest feeling weird. Once I received a clean bill of heart health I started to research why it was I felt like I did that day in Crossfit (and the weirdness I was experiencing for several months prior).
It was summer. I should have increased my water intake. However. I realized that water impacts so much more than feeling thirsty. In fact, waiting to drink water until you're thirsty is not a good practice. Once we become thirsty we have crossed over to the beginning of dehydration.
Here is what I experience when I don't drink enough water (I'm talking about water, clean, pure water. No additions like a flavor packets, tea, coffee, etc. And gatorade doesn't count either. Fruit infused water does count) in addition to my heart experience. These aren't necessarily the obvious signs you would have when you're not drinking enough water, which is why I felt it was important to share.
Fatigue- like take me out I need to go to sleep now fatigue. It sucks. It feels like I have been drugged or when I drink a Grape Crush soda and I have a sugar crash within 15 minutes (it's been years but I remember what it feels like).
Muscle tiredness- I used to think that my muscle fatigue was caused by something I had eaten. I mentioned earlier that for me pasta and/or bread are bad food choices on exercise days, but I have come to realize this isn't the case most of the time. Now, if I have a three day binge of pasta and bread, well, that's a different story. The lack of water will cause me to have muscle fatigue that makes it difficult to do any type of exercise. It feels like I am carrying an extra 100 pounds on whatever body part I'm using and/or like I'm wading through mud. You can imagine how this makes it extremely difficult to stick to an exercise routine.
Body soreness- when I don't drink enough water, my body hurts. Any part of me that may have been a bit sore will become overwhelmingly sore. Any sore spots I may have from workout or an injury, become increasingly painful.
Brain fog- I can't think straight. I'm forgetful. I can't recall the words I want to use. I don't want to do anything that requires any brain power. I'm unmotivated and lazy.
So the point of me sharing this with you is if you find yourself feeling any of these things, consider how much water you've had that day. If you find you're experiencing any or all of these, drink lots of water and see what happens. I bet you'll find that you feel much, much better after two or three glasses. And if you don't like water....well, you're gonna need to get over it.
Water is our life force. It gives us energy. It supports our organs. It is essential to our well-being. No other liquid substance can support us like water does.
If you'd like to see other symptoms of dehydration, just google it. There's a ton of symptoms depending on how severe it is. I'm telling you that even before you hit the official definition of dehydration, you can have the symptoms I have listed above, which is why so many people have no clue that it is from a lack of water.
Now go drink some water!!