In Part 1 of this series of blogs, I bestowed upon you a great wisdom I’d run across and how I shall seek to apply it to various parts of my life. While I shall be covering that 25 part list in no particular order, I will be starting with the first I wrote of:
DRINK LOTS OF WATER
Funny story: about 4 years ago I got myself into the habit of drinking a 4L jug of water while at work. My goal was to get it polished off by the time I left the gym. That’s a LOT of water. And because my job doesn’t allow me to perform its duties from the urinal I found that adding a single serving packet of Crystal Light to the jug would slow that process down. The White Tea Peach Ginger flavor, which was my favorite, left my jug looking mighty yellow. And don’t go getting all crazy on me about a small packet of Crystal Light (which is instructed to dissolve in 500mL of water and I’m diluting in 8X that amount!). In the course of a year, after telling enough gym members when they’d ask what I was drinking “oh, I like to recycle my vitamins; make sure I’m not wasting my money” the jug became infamously known as my jug of pee. No one went near it.
I quickly learned something in that endeavor to drink that much water: my energy stayed MUCH higher than on days I’d only get the required 8 x 8oz (2L total) fluid intake usually recommended. In fact, on days I’d forget my jug at home, the day would drag on and I’d be burned out by the end of it.
On average, these days, I get somewhere between 6-8L of total fluid in me a day. Not because I’m a water hog, but rather I just find myself wanting that much liquid. I’ve become accustom to drinking that much. What does that look like:
Wake: tall glass of tap water ~300mL
During early half of my day: 2.3L jug of tap water with one serving of Q Energy dissolved into it (see what I’m talking about here)
Workout: 2.3L jug filled with tap water and I mix in my pre-intra workout mix of Surge Workout Fuel (over-glorified Gatorade), glutamine, creatine, whey protein hydrosolate, and a pre-workout stimulant formula.
Post-Workout: Protein shake in 750mL of water
Later half of my work day: 2.3L jug of tap water with one serving of Q Energy dissolved into it (see what I’m talking about here)
When I get home: usually 1-2 x 300mL glasses of water and 1-2 x 250mL cups of tea (I’m a chamomile junkie)
Middle of the night: I always wake in the middle of the night, and usually put down a 200-250mL glass of water.
So on a high day such as above I’m taking is about 8L of total fluid.
On Sundays and Mondays (my less busy work days) I usually chill out and don’t use my big 2.3L jugs. I just reach for water whenever I’m thirsty. I may only get 3-4L on those days.
Isn’t That Too Much? Are You Not In The Bathroom ALL Day?
I’m not advocating everyone should rush out and begin downing 2 gallons of water every day to reach some sort of enlightenment. But I am asking that you evaluate how much you are drinking and if you’re drinking enough.
You have to understand I move in the form of low-level exercise for upwards of 16 hours a day. On average I climb a 15 step staircase 30 times a day! Then I have a hard workout near every day and I sweat like a beast. And I’ve built myself up over the past 5 years to drinking the amount of fluid I do.
So don’t do like I do unless you’ve done as I’ve done.
Plus, I have caffeine each day. I supplement with creatine monohydrate. I have a protein rich diet. These are all factors which cause increased need for hydration in the body.
Do I spend a lot of time in the bathroom? Yep, sure do.
I will say that if every person would simply meet the 2L total fluid intake per day you’d probably be making a huge positive step in your life. If you’re very active or perform rigorous workouts, you need some more. If you drink things that dehydrate you (like caffeine containing beverages such as coffee) you should be offsetting that as well.
Some info for you:
- Drinking cold water causes a sharp, but short-lived increase of your metabolism and caloric expenditure due to the process of heating the water to your body temperature. How much? 500mL cold water equated to about 25 extra calories burned. Nothing major, but over time those 100 calories a day will add up.
- A mild amount of dehydration (such as one seen when you feel thirsty) can equate to a 3% drop in metabolic rate. As the saying goes: if you’re thirsty, it’s probably already too late, you’re slightly dehydrated.
- Go read this: http://www.livestrong.com/article/30240-drinking-water-increase-metabolism/ Your liver is begging for help!
Want more info try Google: metabolism + water, dehydration + metabolism, water + weight loss or any other combo you can think of.
The only trick I know that works to truly get someone to drink more fluid is to have that person have a water bottle in front of them AT ALL TIMES. If it’s sitting in front you, you’ll drink it. And I’m not talking a 500mL bottle of Aquafina which is destroying the environment and may possibly be toxic (watch these documentaries to see why Nestle is evil and Aquafina and Dasani are CRAP!: Blue Gold: World Water Wars; Tapped; Flow: For the Love of Water).
Go buy yourself a quality water bottle. Ideally it would be glass. A good idea is stainless steel. I opt for plastic but that’s my choice, just ensure you NEVER drink hot fluids from plastic bottles and make sure they do not have the incredibly frightening chemical BPA in them.
If you’re scared of tap water then invest in a good filtration system such as this:http://www.aquasana.com/product_detail.php?product_id=20 or look up a local service called Wa-2 here: http://www.wa2.ca/
And FYI about 90% of the chlorine your body intakes from water is NOT from drinking tap water, it’s from showering in it!! Maybe you should invest in this instead: http://www.aquasana.com/product_detail.php?product_id=46
Purchasing bottled water is for losers! Yep, I said it.
If you’re not getting your 8 x 8oz a day (2L total), get on that. Evaluate if you need more. Increase water intake slowly over the course of many weeks so you’re not simply ending up in the washroom a dozen times extra. If you don’t eat any processed foods, consider adding sea salt to your foods when cooking – most health nuts don’t get enough sodium and drinking a ton of water only further complicates the problem (a good sign is if you take in extra salt for 3 days and notice an increase in energy, it means you fall into this category). Go easy on the dehydrants: caffeine containing beverages. And drink tap water. Bottled water is destroying the environment (Google: Plastic Ocean Soup or watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FrAShtolieg&feature=related) and you have no idea what you’re drinking (watch the documentaries mentioned above). Paranoid? Get a quality filteration system installed at home and pack water with you in that big jug every where you go.
Rant over. Where’s my chamomile tea?