Nearly every summer, we see athletes suffering from heat stroke and dehydration. While Korey Stringer, a professional football player who fatally suffered an exertional heat stroke, may be the most famous example of heat stroke and dehydration being pushed to the extreme, even the average person facing grueling heat and dehydration can feel adverse effects. This is particularly true for those who love the outdoors and outdoor activities. It is far better to use successful strategies, tools, and a little planning ahead to stay hydrated during the hottest months of the year.
Hydrate When It’s Cool
One of the most important aspects of proper hydration, and certainly one of the most overlooked, is that it is not a short-term fix. While immediate hydration is absolutely necessary to avoid further issues, you’ll have to end whatever activity you’re participating in until you have rehydrated thoroughly.
Be proactive and hydrate ahead of time, even though you may not be sweating or thirsty. Before bed, make sure to have a glass of water. More importantly, make drinking water a priority in the morning. Consuming a bottle of water first thing in the morning offsets overnight dehydration and can completely change the day.
What Gets Measured Gets Managed
As the old business adage goes, “What gets measured gets managed.” In other words, keeping track of our activities provides us with accountability and feedback on our progress and success. Especially in the hot months of summer, assuming we are drinking enough water is a sure-fire way to not drink enough. Get ahead by having a goal and measuring your progress to ensure you are meeting your targets for the day.
Depending on how you consume water, you could set goals such as drinking one gallon of water over the course of the day, eight bottles, eight glasses, and so on. Whatever goal you choose, the next strategy is to simply keep track of it. Tracking and measuring our intake helps us maintain awareness of our hydration patterns.
Use Natural Sources of Water and Electrolytes
Replenishing lost fluids and electrolytes is an essential part of living an active lifestyle. Electrolytes broadly refer to the minerals our body loses when we sweat, such as calcium and potassium. Electrolytes help us retain water effectively, replace the sodium content we lose when we sweat, and offer other critical functions to our physiology. While popular sports drinks replenish essential electrolytes, they also tend to include large amounts of sugar and artificial ingredients.
Drinks such as Greater Than, which offers natural hydration and restores electrolytes, will be more effective in replenishing the body with what it needs.