Did you know that even mild dehydration can effect your mood, performance and ability to think clearly? Mild dehydration is defined as a loss of 1.5% of normal body water volume. The feeling of thirst is often not noticed until it is too late. Often the sensation is triggered only after there is a 1-2% loss of normal body water volume– at the point of mild dehydration.
Staying hydrated is one easy way to stay en pointe at your peak performance level. Here are some tips on how to stay hydrated (excerpt reprinted from Dancer Health: It’s Getting Hot . . . How to Stay Hydrated):
1) Water, water, water. Yes water is the key to all hydration, but not all water is created equal. As much as I am for drinking tap water with a reusable water bottle, there are times when it is necessary to drink water with electrolytes. Some examples would be: Smart Water, and Propel Fitness Water. Keeping your electrolytes up will help with replenishing your body’s needs.
2) Sports drinks: how to drink them. While I love a Gatorade from time to time, they aren’t always the healthiest choice. The upside is that sports drinks help replenish your sugar, potassium, electrolytes, and sodium: everything your body might need to help it recover quickly. The down side is that the sugar isn’t the best in those drinks. A great way to use these is to add ice or water to them, which might sound gross, but it actually doesn’t taste that bad and it makes the sports drink better for you!
3) Fruits and Veggies! Most fruits and vegetables have a high amount of water in them. By adding around 3 servings of fruits and/or veggies at each meal you are increasing your water intake while giving your body energy and filling up on the good stuff. This is probably the easiest way to get extra water and nourishment in your body. It’s almost like you don’t have to even think about it! Just pack a few extra fruits and vegetables and you are set!
4) Track your fluids. At the end of the day if you are feeling a little weak and have a headache, you are probably dehydrated. If you’re not sure if you are getting enough fluids throughout your day, start tracking what kinds of fluids you drink and how much you get of them. This will create an awareness of your liquid intake and it might give you some insight into what you are and are not getting!
-Always keep a water bottle with you
-Over pack on the fruits and veggies
-Don’t be afraid to buy water if necessary
-Listen to your body, if you’re feeling woozy take a second to drink some water, eat some food, and see how you feel. Take a break if you need it!