5 Reasons Why You Need to Drink Water While Working Out - Water Wisdom - Mayu Water Blog

5 Reasons Why You Need to Drink Water While Working Out

Photo of Cameron-Leigh Henning
By Cameron-Leigh Henning
Nevena Radulović - Editor for Mayu Water
Edited by Nevena Radulović

Updated December 23, 2022.

A woman exercising at the gym while drinking a bottle of water

As water makes up around 60% of your body, adequate hydration is important for your body to function at all, let alone optimally. Water is essential for regulating body temperature, maintaining blood volume, supporting muscle and joint movement, and carrying nutrients around the body. Your body's ability to perform these essential tasks during exercise is highly dependent on your fluid intake, so you need to increase it when you're physically active.

Drinking enough healthy water is important for physical activity because it prevents dehydration, increases endurance, and halts excessive elevations in temperature and heart rate. However, drinking water during your workout isn't enough—to achieve your best performance and recover properly, it's important to hydrate before, during, and after exercise. Take a look at five reasons why it's essential to drink water when working out.

» Preparing for a triathlon? See how much water you need to drink for optimum performance.

1. Replace Fluids Lost Through Sweat

The general rule is, if you're sweating, you need to be drinking water. Although sweating is a normal response to physical activity, as the body tries to return to a normal temperature and remove heat through evaporation, it also results in fluid loss. The body can lose one to two liters of water when exercising for an hour or more. If you don't replace those fluids with water, you'll become dehydrated and overheat.

2. Reduce Fatigue & Prevent Dehydration

When the body is dehydrated, it will feel more tired and weaker than usual. That's why carrying a glass bottle of water around with you is a good way to remind yourself to drink more water and boost your energy levels naturally through hydration. Drinking enough water prevents dehydration, giving you more energy to complete your workout. Dehydration results in fatigue because it affects the flow of oxygen to the brain and puts your heart under strain, as it needs to pump harder to get oxygen to all your organs. This makes you less alert and more tired, so staying hydrated means you'll stay energized.

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3. Improve Your Exercise Performance

Drinking enough fluids will help maintain your concentration and performance, and increase your endurance. This means you'll be able to exercise longer and more intensely. Without adequate hydration, your muscles will be weaker in strength and control. Water also aids mental endurance, as it helps your brain cells communicate with one another and carries nutrients to the brain. This vital functioning results in faster decision-making, which will suffer if your body is dehydrated.

4. Lubricate Joints & Lower the Risk of Injuries

Water is a primary component in the makeup of synovial fluid, which is essential for lubricating your joints and promoting ease of movement. When the body is dehydrated, there's less synovial fluid available to protect your joints. This especially becomes a problem when you're lifting weights or doing high-impact exercises. Drinking water before, during, and after your workout will ensure you have enough protective fluid to keep your joints cushioned, lowering your risk of injury.

» Painful joints? See how mineral water can help with joint pain and inflammation.

5. Prevent Muscle Cramping

When you're dehydrated, your body is losing more fluids than it receives. As a result, the body starts storing water for its most important organs like the lungs and heart, leaving less important organs like the digestive system and the muscles without the water and electrolytes they need. Without proper hydration, your muscles will begin to cramp, especially your leg and thigh muscles. Another reason why your muscles cramp due to dehydration is that they have less blood flowing to them. Apart from preventing muscle cramps, proper hydration can also speed up muscle recovery and lessen the feeling of stiffness, as water removes toxins from your body and keeps your muscles working properly.

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In Summary

When it comes to working out, it's all about pre-hydration, hydration, and re-hydration. Your body needs an adequate supply of pure H2O to function at its best. Drinking enough water is essential for lubricating your joints, increasing your energy levels, regulating your body temperature, transporting essential nutrients, and aiding in muscle recovery.

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