Everyone knows the importance of staying hydrated; amazingly according to research from the University of Connecticut as little as 1% dehydration can be enough to dampen our mood and energy – not what you want when you are trying to enjoy yourself on a sunny day. But it can be easy to forget to keep your water consumption levels up when you are out on a day’s adventure.
The science behind dehydration on the water
If you are exercising such as paddling, you will be burning more calories (which requires more water) and potentially sweating (which dehydrates you). It can also be tricky to know how much fluid you need when out for a paddle as it depends on the humidity and temperature of the environment, the amount you are sweating, and the intensity and duration of the exercise you are getting.
Here are our top 5 tips for staying hydrated and feeling great on the water:
- Start Early –the morning is the most effective time of day to get hydrated, so set yourself up for the day by taking on water before you head out.
- Don’t wait until you are thirsty – thirst is a sign you are already a bit dehydrated and your performance will be dipping, so keep sipping at the water regularly through the day to avoid fatigue
- Keep drinks cold - although preferences vary from person to person, it has been found you’re likely to drink more water if it’s refrigerator-cold, so use an insulated drinks bottle such as The Red Original Insulated Drinks Bottle - if you fill up with a bit of ice and cold water before you head out for the day, you can still have a super chilly refreshment 24 hours later.
- Keep it with you – if you love your water bottle, the more likely you are to keep it with you; and if it is by your side, it acts as a reminder to keep drinking. When paddling, if you select a drinks bottle that can be attached to your board through a carabiner clip, you can keep drinking no matter how far you paddle.
- Stick to water – caffeinated beverages act as a diuretic, and alcohol is dehydrating, so if you can’t resist that glass of rose at lunch, make sure you compensate by taking on more water too. Coconut water is a great alternative to water as it contains natural electrolytes including potassium and sodium, both key nutrients in replenishing and rehydrating your body.