By: Katie Verburg
Katie Verburg is an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer who is currently studying to become a Holistic Health Coach. She has been in the health and fitness industry for a decade. Here, she shares the best hydration tips to start using this season.
After months of bundling up and fighting the cold, gloomy, and dark winter days – it’s finally time to shed those layers and soak in the heat from all that sunshine! If you’re anything like me, then this is the best time of the year! Sandals, sleeveless shirts, and sunglasses are the items to never leave home without this summer – and the same can be said for a bottle of cold water.
While it’s heating up outside, one of the biggest things to stay mindful of over the summer months is staying hydrated. When the temperatures outside begin to rise, making sure to drink enough water is crucial whether you’re exercising outside in the heat, traveling, or simply sitting in the sun. Keeping the body properly hydrated helps the heart to pump blood easily through the blood vessels and to the muscles. However, not drinking enough can lead to serious consequences, including dehydration, dizziness, and muscle cramps, among other issues.
Below are some simple tips on how to stay hydrated during these hot and sweaty summer months.
Seems obvious, but surprisingly enough, not enough people drink the recommended amount of water each day. Experts suggest consuming close to two liters of water each day, which can vary depending on the individual. However, purchasing a reusable water bottle to bring along with you each day can help bring awareness to how much water you’re consuming regularly. Start with a goal of consuming 32 ounces first and work your way up from there.
Cucumbers, mint, raspberries, lemon, and lime are great options to add to your reusable water bottle. Often times, water can get boring after a while, so adding in fresh fruit for a little flavor boost is a great way to sweeten things up. Vital Proteins Collagen Water – available in the following flavors: Lemon Slice, Blueberry Mint, Strawberry Lemon, Blueberry Mint, and Blackberry Hibiscus – is a deliciously hydrating way to get your water intake during the summer.
Consuming water-rich foods and vegetables such as watermelon, cantaloupe, pineapple, grapefruit, cucumbers, and celery can help aid in hydration. Pack some of these colorful fruits and vegetables for lunch, the beach, pool outings, or just an at-home snack.
Coffee, some teas, and energy drinks can affect your hydration levels due to the high amount of caffeine included in each. Caffeine is a diuretic and consuming too much of it too often can cause your body to release water instead of absorbing it. This is something that should be taken seriously over the summer months.
During the heated months of summer, not only is it important to hydrate with enough water for your body, but it’s also important to consume electrolytes. Electrolytes are minerals in the body that are responsible for regulating nerve and muscle function. They also play a key role in maintaining your body’s fluid levels in order to avoid serious health issues like brain fog and muscle cramps.