The Importance of Hydration during Exercise

Healthy Living

By Victoria McEwan
As the temperature starts to soar outside, it is very important to keep the body hydrated and when we add exercise to the equation, staying hydrated is crucial for optimal performance.The goal of drinking fluids during exercise is to prevent dehydration.  Water and electrolytes serve very important roles in the functioning of the body and sweating can lead to excessive loss of critical nutrients, if not properly replaced. The amount of fluid and sweat losses during exercise, depends on the intensity of the exercise, environmental conditions which are very important in Kuwait as the temperatures are very high during this time of year.
 
Making sure that sufficient fluids are taken in during exercise will influence cardiovascular, thermoregulatory and muscle function as well as the bodies hydration status. It is very important that fluid intake during exercise should be adjusted to accommodate sweat rate; therefore drinking fluids during exercise is very important, as even minimal dehydration can increase cardiovascular strain and limit the ability of the body to transfer heat from contracting muscles to the skin surface, which can drain your energy and make you tired and brain function can start to suffer.
 
The body is about 60% water give or take and there are many different opinions on how much water we should be drinking everyday and the recommended 2 litres per day is a rule that is followed and is effective in maintaining hydration.  As a fitness professional I believe that because our bodies are always on the brink of dehydration, we need to consider the environment that we are living in and the amount of physical activity we do daily so we need to sip on water constantly throughout the day to maintain perfect hydration.
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