Don’t Skimp on Winter Hydration
Last week we discussed a few handy pointers to help you stay safe and injury-free during cold weather runs. We decided to devote a whole blog post to the importance of staying hydrated when the weather outside is frightful. H20 is so delightful, and does more than just quench your thirst, even when there isn’t any heat to beat.
There is strong evidence that lower temperatures actually strip your body of even more moisture. You know chapped lips? Parched knuckles? Desert-dry skin? These are all signs of impending dehydration, and are especially common in winter because of the harsh, frigid winds. However, most of us are not inclined to drink even the same amount of water during those cheerful months, since we tend to associate thirst with heat, and not with…well, thirst.
Additionally, there’s another peculiar aspect of wintertime habits that water can assist a whole heck of a lot with: eating. No matter how careful you may be, the holidays spell splurging, and your stomach may not be 100% ready to deal with the consequences. So it’s water to the rescue again, aiding your digestion daily to help you avoid turning treats into aches.
What it comes down to is that drinking water is important when you exercise, regardless of the weather. You’re still sweating, even if the chill prevents you from feeling it as, shall we say pungently as you normally might during a spring or summer run. Your body still needs to replenish that lost liquid, and as we all know, nothing fills that need like a nice cool glass of water.
Of course, the water you consume doesn’t have to be cold, or even necessarily cool. Water is water, and whatever way you choose to take it – chilled in the fridge over ice or piping hot with a squeeze of lemon – is the right way. Drink the same amount of water as you would in the springtime – an 8-oz. glass an hour or so before running, and 4-8 oz. every twenty minutes or so throughout your run. Top it all off with a big tall glass when you’re done and finished cooling down, and you can’t miss your mark for hydration. Drink water frequently throughout the day – not only will it keep your body lubricated and operating smoothly, but it can even help fight the winter blahs, giving a much-needed lift when the skies go gray.
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