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The Running Journalist: Hydration is Key

The Running Journalist is a fitness column for the students of Muskingum published weekly on the Special Section page of the Black & Magenta.

Check here weekly to get your glimpse of our campus newspaper!

Published: 4 Feb 2011

What is clear, has zero calories, and gives you healthy-looking skin, lubricates your joints, flushes out harmful toxins, regulates temperature, facilitates digestion, helps burn fat, and much, much more? WATER! That common liquid found in so many different places is a miracle fluid that will help keep your body fit, healthy, and beautiful. 

If water is so amazing at helping with weight loss, then why am I always seeing a lack of it at the Chess Center? Constantly seeing runners on the treadmill or in the aerobics room without a water bottle means that the importance of water accompanied with fitness has not been taken seriously.  Why is water, even better, hydration key during workouts? According to lifemojo.com, a health and lifestyle fitness website, “adequate fluid intake is essential to comfort, performance and safety. The longer and more intensely you exercise, the more important it is to drink the right kind of fluids.” 

But, why specifically water?

According to sparkpeople.com, a weight loss and fitness resource website, “during one hour of vigorous exercise, the average person sweats about one quart of sweat” and we must ALWAYS replace this water that we lose when we exercise.Why? “Without [replacing]this water, your muscles will become dehydrated. Muscle movement depends on how hydrated you are, so if they are dry, they will not work as well. As a result, your workout will not be as productive as you would like.”

In other words, “Your performance will diminish with the loss of fluids.” 

What do you do to ensure you stay properly hydrated?  Hydrate BEFORE working out: “two to three hours prior to a workout, drink two to three cups of water.” Hydrate DURING the work out (according to lifemojo.com): “During a workout, drink one-fourth to one-half of a cup of water every 15 to 20 minutes throughout your training session. In warm weather you may need more because of increased water loss due to sweating. Your thirst mechanism is blunted during exercise, so don’t rely on drinking only when you are feeling thirsty.”  And don’t forget AFTER: “Recover with two to three cups of water.” 

You can’t expect to lose weight and be healthy without water, so next time you hit the gym, I hope you have a water bottle in hand.

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