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Running is a great way to stay fit and healthy, but it can be hard to stay properly hydrated while doing it. Whether you are a beginner or a professional runner, hydration is key to performance and recovery. Staying hydrated is essential to any runner’s success, and to help you do so, we’ve compiled this guide of hydration for runners.
Why is Hydration Important for Runners?
When you’re running, it’s essential to stay hydrated to ensure your body can accomplish at its best. Dehydration can cause fatigue, cramping, and a decrease in performance. Additionally, dehydration can set you at risk for heat exhaustion and other dangerous medical conditions. By drinking water and other fluids before, during and after your run, you can ensure your body stays healthy and perform at its best.
How Much Water Should I Drink?
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends that runners take in between 5 and 9 ounces of fluid every 15-20 minutes during their run, however, the amount of water each person should drink varies depending on the individual. A a good rule of thumb is to drink 8-10 glasses of water a day. For runners, it’s important to drink more water to replace the fluids lost during exercise. Aim to drink at least 2-3 liters of water daily, and drink an extra 1-2 liters before and after a run.
What Else Should I Drink?
In addition to water, you should also drink electrolyte-rich beverages like sports drinks or coconut water. These drinks help replenish electrolytes that are lost through sweat and can help you stay hydrated for longer. Additionally, you can eat foods that contain water, like fruits and vegetables.
Tips for Staying Hydrated while running
There are several tips that can help you stay hydrated:
- Drink before you feel thirsty: By the time you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated.
- Carry water with you on your run: Bring a hydration belt or a water bottle so that you can easily take a sip of water when needed.
- Make sure to drink after your run: This helps replace the fluids you’ve lost while running and helps your body recover more quickly.
- Take regular breaks: Stop every 15-20 minutes to take a few sips of water, or if you’re feeling particularly thirsty, take a longer break to drink more water.
- Wear light, breathable clothing: Wearing lightweight, breathable clothing can help you stay cooler and reduce the amount of sweat you produce.
- Plan ahead: On hot days, plan for longer breaks with more hydration.
Hydration is essential for runners of all levels. By drinking plenty of water and electrolyte-rich drinks, and following the tips outlined above, you can stay hydrated and perform at your best.
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