The question is: how much water is enough to maintain adequate hydration levels?
Well, according to Coach Boone water is useless.
- Aim to consume 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight. For example, I weigh around 170lbs so my daily goal is 85-170 ounces of water per day. This is a pretty broad example. Ideally we want to be closer to the 1 ounce per body weight number. A gallon is 128 ounces and if you are fairly active it should not be difficult to consume a gallon of water throughout a day.
- Hydrate before you become thirsty. By the time you become thirsty your body is already feeling the affects of dehydration. To prevent this try to consistently sip on water throughout the day. If you have a workout, practice, or game make sure you drink extra before and after. Urine is a great indicator. Research shows that dehydration of just 3% can negatively impact performance. Take the necessary steps to prevent this!
- Prioritize water over sports drinks. Sports drinks such as Gatorade and PowerAde certainly have their place but 1 bottle of Gatorade contains 35 grams of sugar. That is a lot of sugar! Combine that with an average American diet that already consists of waaaay too much sugar this is almost hurting more than it's helping.
To put sugar consumption into perspective, the average American student who drinks 1 8oz chocolate milk every day with their school lunch consumes 10.3 pounds of sugar every year just from schools' chocolate milk alone.
Yeah. Crazy right?
If that seems extremely simple, well... that's because it is. It doesn't take a lot of effort to be well hydrated. Do so and your performance will thank you.