The Importance of Hydration for Youth Athletes: What Is It?
Hydration is essential for human body to function properly. Without proper hydration, the body will suffer from various problems such as dehydration, muscle cramps, nausea, headaches and even death. In fact, many studies have shown that lack of water causes severe health issues including kidney failure and heart disease. Even if your body doesn’t feel thirsty, it’s still important to drink enough water so that your organs are functioning properly.
How Much Water Should You Drink During Exercise?
As mentioned above, the amount of water you need depends on several factors such as how much physical activity you’re doing, what kind of workout you’re doing and other factors like age and gender. However, there are some general rules of thumb that may come in handy when trying to determine how much water you need to consume each day.
For example, if you’re training hard for a marathon or other endurance event, then drinking two liters (2 L) of fluid per hour is probably a good rule of thumb. If you’re just exercising at home or going out for a walk every now and then, then 1 liter (1 L) of fluids per hour might be sufficient.
How Can You Tell If You’re Even Dehydrated?
Dehydration is a very real concern for people who engage in exercise and while some individuals may not show visible signs of dehydration, there are some telltale signs that you may be dehydrated. For example, if you start developing a dry mouth or your urine is dark yellow then you are probably dehydrated. In addition to this, you may also experience nausea, headaches, muscle cramps and fatigue.
How Can You Avoid Dehydration?
The first step to avoiding dehydration is to start drinking water and other fluids before you start getting thirsty. By the time you feel thirsty, your body is already mildly dehydrated. In addition to drinking water, you should also make an effort to eat foods that are high in water content such as fruits and vegetables. In addition to hydrating your body, these foods will provide valuable nutrients that are essential to overall health.
In addition to eating water-rich foods and drinking water, you should also try to avoid alcohol and caffeine as these can lead to dehydration. It’s also important that you stay cool as exercising in hot conditions can lead to excessive sweating which can cause your body to dehydrate at a faster rate.
You can stay cool by timing your workouts to coincide with the cooler parts of the day as well as exercising in a place that is air-conditioned. You should also dress lightly as wearing extra clothing can cause you to sweat more. Finally, if you are working out indoors, you may want to invest in astand up fan to improve airflow.
It is also important to rehydrate after you exercise. Try to drink about 16 ounces (450 milliliters) of water for every pound (0.5 kilogram) of weight you lose during exercise.
For example, if you lose three pounds (1.5 kilograms) during a one hour workout, then you should drink three 16-ounce (0.5-liter) glasses of water to rehydrate your body.
It is also important to rehydrate your body after you exercise because this is when your body is most receptive to absorbing fluids and nutrients.
It is possible to drink too much water while exercising. This can lead to a condition called water intoxication or hyperhydration, which can lead to symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, headaches, seizures and in rare cases, death.
According to some research, people who exercise in extreme heat may be at a higher risk of suffering from water intoxication. It is believed that individuals with higher amounts of body fat may also be at a higher risk. If you start experiencing any of these symptoms while exercising, you should seek medical attention.
Exercise and Pregnancy
If you are a woman who is currently pregnant or is trying to become pregnant, there are some things that you need to know about exercising and pregnancy. For example, it is best to avoid exercising in excessively hot conditions as your body temperature can rise more quickly.
This can be very dangerous for both you and your baby. In fact, if you are pregnant and find yourself suffering from a heat-related emergency, you should get to a hospital immediately.
In addition, because your body is working harder during pregnancy, especially during the second and third trimesters, you may become dehydrated at a higher rate than when you were not pregnant. In fact, it is common for women who are pregnant to suffer from dehydration because their bodies tend to retain fluid.
This fluid can come out of your blood, which means your blood volume decreases and your blood vessels constrict, which can lead to a drop in blood pressure. This drop in blood pressure can be dangerous for both you and your baby. To prevent this from happening, it is important that you increase your intake of water as well as other fluids such as fruit juices and milk.
Pregnant women are also encouraged to avoid extreme temperatures as this can cause your body temperature to fluctuate, which can affect the health of your unborn child. When exercising, you should always make sure to wear loose fitting clothing and a hat to help keep your body temperature from spiking.
You may also want to exercise in the early morning or evening when it is cooler, rather than during the middle of the day. You should also try to keep yourself as well hydrated as possible by drinking small amounts of water throughout the day.
If you are suffering from a condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure, you may find that your need to increase your water intake even more than when you were not pregnant. It is especially important for women with any of these conditions to be tested for dehydration regularly during exercise.
Dehydration can lead to a rise in blood pressure, and if not treated immediately, can be dangerous for both the mother and the unborn child.
If you continue to exercise regularly while you are pregnant, the benefits may include fewer aches and pains, better sleep and less weight gain. You should always speak with your physician before starting or changing your exercise routine if you are currently pregnant or planning to become pregnant in the near future.
He or she can help you determine what types of exercise are best for you and your baby.
Your doctor can also help you determine if your current exercise routine is safe for you and your baby. It may be necessary for you to make some changes in your routine as your pregnancy progresses.
Before beginning any exercise routine, it is always important that you consult with your physician first. He or she can help you create an exercise program that is safe and effective for both you and your unborn child.
A Word From Verywell
If you are currently suffering from back pain and are experiencing problems during your exercise routine, stop immediately and contact your physician immediately. You should also consult with your physician before beginning a new exercise routine if you have not done any regular exercise in the past.
It is important to always check with your doctor before starting a new program, especially if you are pregnant.
Sources & references used in this article:
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Hydration in the pediatric athlete—how to guide your patients by MF Bergeron – Current Sports Medicine Reports, 2015 – journals.lww.com
Thirst for drink knowledge: how Singaporean youth athletes measure up in an exercise hydration knowledge questionnaire by M Chia, S Mukherjee, D Huang – International Journal of …, 2015 – journals.sagepub.com
Medical sports injuries in the youth athlete: emergency management by DL Merkel, JT Molony Jr – International journal of sports physical …, 2012 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
Hydration status, sweat rates, and rehydration education of youth football campers by BP McDermott, DJ Casa… – Journal of sport …, 2009 – journals.humankinetics.com
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Hydration status of heat-acclimatized youth team players during competition by M Chia, S Mukherjee – Science & Sports, 2012 – Elsevier
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