Monday, June 16, 2014


“High and fine literature is wine, and mine is only water; but everybody likes water.” 
― Mark Twain

Water & Hydration

To talk about how much water you should drink before, during and after exercise is, like many other subjects, variable from one source to another.  One source says that your water consumption should average between 0.5 ounces of fluid to 1 ounce of fluid per day.  So if you weigh 150 pounds, your water requirement should be between 75 and 150 ounces per day. If you are drinking from an 8 ounce 
glass the amount of fluid should run a little over 9 glasses per day and if you need more fluid, say 150 ounces per day you would require almost 19 glasses per day.  

The amount of fluid should be based on the intensity, type of exercise and the time you spend doing it. 
Numerous other variables are also involved but in any situation you can begin the day with a glass of water each morning, be a training day or a rest day. It seems that the best measure of how much water to drink is your thirst. The benefits of taking large amounts of water each day, over and above the time you become thirsty, are mostly unsubstantiated. The claimed benefits of taking a lot of fluids include weight loss, fatigue, arthritis, headaches and alertness, preventing constipation are mostly unproven.  It is also an unproven factor to consider the color or your urine.  Some say a dark color may mean dehydration but there are many other causes of color changes. Also, even though caffeinated beverages are stated by some that they cause dehydration, a recent study has found that tea, coffee and sodas are hydrating for people and thus should count toward their daily fluid total.

Too much fluid can also cause problems.  When one consumes large amounts of water during exercising, the blood plasma (the liquid part of blood) increases, while the sodium concentration in the body fluids decreases.  This can develop into hyponatremia, or low blood sodium, and in can happen after drinking too much water.  The adverse effects of too much water and not enough sodium in the tissues may lead to tissue damage, and interfere with brain, heart, and muscle function. Symptoms can include vomiting, muscle twitching, delirium, seizures, coma and death.

A recent study of three deaths of US military recruits highlights the danger of drinking too much water.
The military focused on the dangers of not drinking enough, especially under conditions often associated with exercising and in hot conditions. 

A young man I knew was an experienced marathoner and just finished his fourth run.  At that point, at age 45, he died as what some experts think was caused by too much water drinking before and during his run. 

As in most endeavors we undertake in living, moderation is the name of the game ...........don 't flood your belly with water or any other fluid!