Sweaty summer months can wreak havoc on your hydration levels, but they don't have to. Here's what you need to know about healthy summer H2O habits and how to stay on track.
Find the right bottle for your needs:
Having water on hand should be a no-brainer, but sometimes that trusty water bottle gets left behind. Select a water bottle that fits your lifestyle and that you won’t mind toting around. Find something big enough to keep you hydrated, but not so big that it’s a burden to carry around. Depending on your activity, think about glass vs plastic vs stainless steel, or even a collapsible bottle if space is tight.
Prepare for a workout with water, but keep it coming as you continue to sweat throughout the session. If you’re going on a long run, research your route ahead of time to ensure you’ll pass by water fountains along the way. If your route is off the beaten path, invest in a hydration belt, made with smaller bottles to distribute the weight evenly. Bonus points go to belts that can also hold your phone, like the Nathan TrailMix Plus 2 Hydration Belt. If you prefer to run with a bottle in hand, check out the Nathan SpeedDraw Plus, complete with a zippered pouch to hold your ID and keys. For long hikes, try a hydration backpack from Camelbak which will hold your water and your hiking essentials, all-in-one, and allows for easy drinking along the trail.
Pay Attention to Thirst Levels:
It’s said that if you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated (or on the road to it at least). Pay close attention to even the slightest thirst and continue to sip water to keep it at bay.
Take a Break:
If you do begin to feel thirsty and experience lightheadedness or dizziness, listen to your body and take a break. If you’re serious about training for a race or finishing your workout strong, don’t ignore the signs that you’re pushing too hard. If you fight through the dizziness, there’s a chance you can really injure yourself. Always listen to the cues your body is sending and take care of your safety first and foremost.
Give Your Water Some Oomph:
You don’t need calories or sugars to make your water more powerful. Drop a nuun tablet into your water to pack your H2O with electrolytes and a light tasty flavor. Made with clean ingredients, the gluten-free, dairy-free and soy-free tablets turn boring water into a hydrating and replenishing sports drink with only 10 calories.
A glass of water isn’t the only way to ensure you’re hydrated during a particularly steamy day. Coconut water, watermelon juice or a mixed fresh pressed juice will help do the trick. D.C.’s juice scene can keep you hydrated after that super sweaty run or after a particularly hot Bikram yoga class. Check out Jrink Juicery, Fruitive, Puree, South Block Co. and Press for locally hydrating options.