Hydration : 101

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Hydration : 101

Your body is 70% water. Water flushes toxins from our body and also helps move vitamins and minerals to cells that need them. Our friends and clients often ask us for guidance on hydration, especially when completing a workout. Here is a simple guide to keep you feeling well during your workout and for a better recovery when you’re all done.

Pre Workout

At least 2-3 hours before a workout, drink 16-20 oz of fluid. This will allow you to start your workout in an already hydrated state. Carbohydrates are the body’s main source of fuel. Without them, you’ll experience muscle fatigue, and it’ll be tough to perform at a high intensity. Try to get .45 grams of carbohydrate per pound of body weight 2-3 hours before exercise. For a 120 pound woman, this would be 50 grams. Some examples of snacks with 50 grams of carbohydrates are: 1 1/2 cups tomato soup, 1 cup cranberry juice, 4 1/2 oz of fruit flavored fat-free yogurt.

During Your Workout

Weighing yourself before and after a workout will determine your sweat rate. If you lose weight during your workout, drink more next time. If you gain weight, drink less. Remember that sweat is more than just water. Sodium is the main electrolyte lost in sweat. A lightly flavored electrolyte drink can replace the fluid and electrolytes lost in sweat.

Post Workout

The sweat lost during exercise represents fluid loss not fat loss. Replacing the fluids lost during your workout will help prepare your body for the next day’s workout. You’ll feel better and recover more rapidly. For every pound of weight lost after your workout, you should drink 20 oz of fluid. Individuals who are focused on tissue repair and looking to gain muscle, should consume approximately 20-30 grams of protein shortly after exercise.


Coleman E. Carbohydrate and Exercise. In Rosenbloom CA and Coleman E. eds. Sports Nutrition: A Practice Manual for Professionals 5th Ed. 2012, in press.

Peronnet F. Healthy hydration for physical activity. Nutrition Today; 2010;45(6S):S41-S44.

Phillips, S. & Van Loon, L. (2011), Dietary protein for athletes: from requirements to optimum adaptation. Journals of Sport Sciences, 24 Suppl. 1, S29-38.

Read 2884 times Last modified on Thursday, 20 March 2014 16:45

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