Tips for Drinking More Water

When I shared my 2012 Fitness Goals last week I asked all of you what you had resolved to do to take care of your health in 2012. Besides exercise, one of the most common responses was to drink more water.

I’ve totally been there! For a long time I struggled with keeping my body hydrated. I would wait until I was thirsty before taking a drink. I learned that by that time, your body is already feeling the affects of dehydration.

Last summer I really made an effort to drink the proper amount of fluids for my body because I noticed that I suffered from some of the ill affects of not consuming enough water: my skin was dry, my urine was yellow, and I was low on energy. I thought I’d share with you a few tips to stay hydrated.

HOW TO DRINK MORE WATER

Make it Convenient

Have a water bottle with you whenever you leave the house. I like my 25 ounce CamelBak Stainless Bottle. I bring it with me everywhere. This ensures that I won’t ever find myself thirsty without a water source.

If you have a hard time remembering to drink water, set a reminder alarm on your phone to go off every 45-60 minutes to suggest to yourself that you stop, take a break, and rehydrate.

At first you might feel like your constantly drinking water, but it will become second nature in no time.

Note: After going to the restroom, rehydrate with more water.

Drink Before, During, and Between Your Meals

When you’re eating out, always drink a glass of water before you begin your meal. This will help curb your hunger so that you consume fewer calories and enjoy your meal without overindulging.

Plus, water is the free beverage choice when eating out. Continue to sip water throughout the meal to compensate for higher sodium that is often present in restaurant meals.

Fruits and vegetables contain lots of water that will benefit our bodies and have less calories than heavy ingredients. When ordering out, consider choosing a side salad and sharing an entree with a friend or spouse or a meal with lots of produce in it.

Sip a glass of water with meals and continue to hydrate your body between meals. Often times when we feel hungry, our bodies are really just in need of water rather than calories.

Flavor Your Water

Many people complain that they don’t like the way water tastes. Flavored water is especially great when you’re dining out or entertaining. You still feel as if you’re indulging in a delicious drink, but with far less calories.

When you cut out the calories of cocktails, soda, or other sugary drinks that are often present on restaurant menus (and even in our homes) you can afford to indulge more on your meal. If you still feel compelled to order a drink, ask for a glass of water in addition to your beverage of choice.

tips for drinking more water

Try a few of these tips for flavoring your water:

1. Add a drop or two of 100% pure essential oil to your glass. Essential oils are a great calorie-free and sugar-free flavor option. This is my favorite trick because it hardly takes any time at all and I can take care of it on the go.

  • My favorite water flavors are: orange, grapefruit, lemon, lime, or peppermint. I also like to combine mint and lemon or mint and grapefruit.
  • Look for essential oils that are 100% certified pure therapeutic grade, they will not contain additives, chemicals, or filler products.

2. When drinking juice, water it down by 25% to reduce calorie and sugar intake and increase water consumption.

3. Add various produce to your water. Ideas include: muddled herbs and berries, cucumber, and citrus slices.

Refreshing Flavored Water Recipes:

Know How Much Water Your Body Needs

The old recommendation of drinking 8 – 8 ounce glasses of water a day is just an average and more of a general guideline.

To more accurately represent the amount your body needs divide your weight in half and drink that many ounces of water per day.

Example: A person weighing 120 lbs would drink 60 ounces of H2O a day.

Those who are heavy exercisers will feel the need to drink more water than this throughout the day due to the liquids lost in sweat.

Additionally, it is very important to keep your body properly hydrated when visiting high altitudes – even drink more water than normally necessary – to avoid feeling ill.

Start Early and Finish Early

Don’t wait until you feel thirsty to have a glass of water.

I find it easier to drink the proper amount of water when I get started right away in the morning.

On the flip side, don’t consume large quantities of water close to bed – unless you like waking up for frequent, late night trips to the bathroom. I aim to drink most of my water before dinner time and to drink sips here and there up until two hours before bedtime.

What are your tips for drinking more water?