Should you drink water during a workout?

  • By Kate
  • September 2, 2021
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  • 58 Views

During an active workout, one naturally feels thirst and wants to reach for a bottle of water. It seems absolutely normal, however, having water during a workout, before it or afterwards is surrounded by various myths and misunderstanding. As a result, many people refrain from having water even though they might feel really thirsty.

If you are not sure about the logic of resigning from drinking during physical activity, you should check this article.

Why do people not drink during workouts?

There are many reasons for which some people will not drink while exercising even if they real feel rather thirsty. One of the most popular case is that many individuals are convinced drinking will not allow them to lose weight.

Another widespread belief which might have been supported by some coaches from your childhood is of being unable to exercise with a stomach filled with water.

Some coaches from the past also did not allow sportsmen to have water either during a workout or right after it as according to them liquids are putting excessive pressure on the heart.

Finally, many people do not drink during a workout simply because they do not feel thirst.

Does drinking prevent people from losing weight?

You might have already noticed how it is possible to suddenly become even a kilogram lighter for no obvious reason. Needless to say, people who are struggling with excessive weight are very happy to see such a rapid change in their body shape. Unfortunately, they mistake loss of weight for loss water.

In fact, it is not difficult to lose water from your body unless you have some particular health issues related to the water retention system. Any intensive physical activity without refilling your body with water can lead to an excessive loss of liquid which will make you slimmer. Yet, this effect will be very short and the moment you start drinking again, your weight will come back to you. As you can imagine, this is so since the amount of weight in your body will stay the same.

There is no sense in dehydrating yourself in order to lose weight. The only reasonable situation for using this option is when sportsmen need to get into a particular weight group before a competition. Obviously, they are not doing it for the sake of their appearance and this change in their bodies is needed for a very short time.

When it comes for a long-term goal of gaining healthy weight, you should never resign from having water as it actually increases the amount of calories burnt during a workout. Certainly, water is also great for decreasing appetite. Finally, it will be just impossible for you to exercise effectively while feeling intense thirst.

What if you do not drink because you do not feel thirst?

Certainly, not all of the workouts are equally intensive and sometimes you might not feel thirst. Yet, it is crucial to understand that in many situations people are just failing to recognise the loss of water which should already be refilled. At the same time, this can lead to a serious decrease in your performance. Just imagine that losing only 2% of water in your body will decrease your effectiveness during a workout by 25%.

Actually, even professional sportsmen are not particularly good at recognising mild dehydration and might not be aware of feeling thirsty before the loss of liquid reaches the amount of 50%.

For that reason, you should regularly have water during your workout even if it feels like you do not need it right now and can keep on exercising for a longer time without drinking.

Is having water can make your heart work harder during a workout?

Actually, the truth is a not sufficient enough of water in your body will make your heart work harder. If the body is dehydrating, the heart needs to make more contractions to pump the blood which is getting thicker. This also leads to increasing the body temperature.

Such changes are also shifting the metabolism and the body switches to the glycogen stored in muscles for getting energy rather than burning the calories stored in fat. Undeniably, this is something both the people willing to lose weight and the people who are aiming to gain muscles should avoid.

On top of that, people will simply lose concentration and coordination when the body is dehydrated.

Will water make it more difficult for you to exercise?

The last reason for not having water during a workout has no ground. You might find it more difficult to exercise after having a heavy meal. If you try drinking some water in such a case, you might feel even more overfilled in your stomach. Yet, if you do not eat too much before exercising, you will hardly feel water in your belly.

How much should you drink during a workout?

Everything depends on your weight and intensity of your workout. A very generalised rule for water intake is having a 0.5 l bottle before a workout. While exercising, have a glass of water every 15 minutes. Finally, you should drink as much water after your training session, as you have lost during the workout.