I doubt it!
But you might be drinking too little.
Here’s a quick little Q&A to help you find out.
Can you answer yes to any of the following?
If you honestly answered NO to all of the above, congrats, you’re perfect! 🙂 Move along now.
But if you answered yes to even ONE of them, you might very well be missing out on one the easiest ways to look better, feel better, and maintain a healthy weight.
I know, I know, you’re so sick of people telling you to drink more water. Why can’t they tell you to drink more wine? And no, that doesn’t count as water!
Neither does coffee.
Anyway, lots of folks are finally jumping on the water wagon because they are discovering just how much it IS helping them, or how so little of it was actually hurting them.
Here’s a text I received from my 50-year old client last week, “Jess, I can’t believe it. The circles under my eyes I’ve had for years are disappearing! It has to be the water. That’s the only thing I’ve done different in 2 weeks. Even my joints are hurting less.”
It’s true. With a majority of my clients the only change I make the first week or two is to increase their water intake. That’s how many people simply aren’t drinking enough of it.
So HOW much water is enough?
Well, there’s varying thoughts on this. Some say only ½ your bodyweight in ounces (so if you way 140 pounds, you need 70 ounces of water per day).
Others, mainly those in the fitness world, say 1 – 1.5 gallons per day (that’s 128-192 ounces)!
You can ignore the old 8 glasses per day suggestion– too generic, and everyone’s “glass” size may be a different.
I have found the sweet spot for most people is 100-150 ounces per day, depending on your body weight and activity level. Those who are inactive may require less water, but still at least 1/2 their body weight in ounces.
If you are an athlete, or exercise enough to break a sweat 4 or more times per week, then you definitely need the higher amounts. (See exact recommendations at the bottom of this post).
Same is true if you have an active job, or you work outdoors in the heat.
Again, we’re talking PURE WATER here, not the water you mix with your protein powder or brew your coffee in. In fact, the more coffee you drink, the more water you need!
Like I said, I have found that nearly all my new clients need to increase their water intake. And we do it gradually over a week or two, which is how I suggest you do it.
How to Increase your water intake the right way
Increase your water in manageable increments every day, or every 2-3 days.
For example, if you’re on the very low end and are basically only drinking about one coffee cup size of water per day, you can begin by drinking one more coffee cup size today (one in the morning and one in the afternoon or evening), and then adding a 3rd coffee cup size in 2-3 days. Continue to increase by one cup every few days or at least once per week until you reach 1/2 your body weight in ounces, or at least 80 ounces.
At that point I know you will feel and see such an incredible difference that I won’t even have to convince you to shoot for 100 ounces.
How to Know When More Water is Working
You’ll know it’s working when you begin peeing more, and when you notice that you are thirsty more often. It means your body’s natural signals are working.
Also, once your body knows it’s getting watered regularly, it will stop retaining the little bit it had before. So you will notice your belly is less bloated.
And take note of the things you answered yes to above. If you notice those things are changing for the better, then it’s safe to say that the increase in water is having a positive impact on your body.
Tips for Athletes and Gym Rats
For those who exercise intensely or play sports, drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after the activity to avoid overheating and to stay hydrated. You want to replace whatever fluids you lost due to exercise as soon as possible.
Working out less than 1 hour? Just drink plain water
Working out HARD for more than 1 hour? Add a little carb liquid (sports drink) and/or electrolyte powder to your water.
Working out HARD for more than 1 hour most days of the week? Aim for 1-2 gallons of water a day, but be sure to take a complete multi-vitamin, as drinking a lot of water causes you to excrete many ions which, if not careful, could possibly result in a deficiency of certain vitamins.
If you want to get really technical, you can weigh yourself before and after your workouts and drink 2-3 cups of water for every pound of weight you lost during your workout. You want to have your bodyweight back to normal before your next workout.
Expect these fitness improvements as a result of being properly hydrated
- Better workouts
- Quicker recovery time
- Less muscle soreness
- Less joint pain or stiffness
- Increased flexibility
So, have you been drinking enough water?
Post in the comments how much you drink each day, and let us know any tips or tricks you have for making sure you hit your water goals. Your feedback can help those just getting started.
And please share with a friend who you know needs to drink more water! It’s a subtle way of saying, “Told you so.” 😉