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Carolyn’s Workout Diary: Week 4 – Hydration

In week four of her fitness challenge, Carolyn learns how to break some age-old bad health habits.

Carolyn’s Workout Diary: Week 4 – Hydration

A funny thing has happened since I started this fitness gig, and it’s to do with hydration.

We’re always told we should be drinking up to eight glasses of water a day. Personally, I’ve never been able to do it and struggle to down a 750ml Pump bottle of water a day. Even with it sitting on my desk.

In the past, whenever I’ve tried to up my water intake, I’ve ended up running to the loo, which is not always convenient when you’ve a lot going on.

Over the past four weeks, I’ve significantly upped my water intake because of all the extra exercise I’ve been doing, and a funny thing has happened. Despite drinking more, I’m now thirsty all of the time and can’t seem to get enough it. My body is demanding more of the stuff and I’m not running off to the loo like I used to, which is super weird, so I asked my wonderful trainer Gaz Brown of Getting Running about it.

“If your body’s in a state of dehydration it learns to survive in dehydration and it may not be good for you long term. When you start feeding it water it uses it in the manner that it needs to so you need to keep replenishing that,” Gaz says. “And it works incredibly well. When you keep your water levels up, then you’ll find that will be part of better sleep, better eating and feeling better. It’s one of those basics in the human body that needs to be constantly replenished and we don’t do it enough. Our body is heavily affected when we haven’t got the right hydration levels in it so that would be probably why. You’re feeding it. It wants more because it’s now working correctly with water.”

Gaz’s comment made me realise I’ve probably been in a constant state of mild dehydration for more than a decade. I’ve since learned that even mild dehydration can drain you of energy and make you tired. This explains why, with my increased water intake, I now also have increased energy. All these years I should have been saving my health (and pocket) by drinking a glass of water instead of grabbing that extra triple shot latte to keep myself going.

As if that wasn’t enough to get the message through, the topic of water came up again at the recent Skechers Memory Foam launch where I was treated to a reflexology session. The idea sounded heavenly after all the running I’ve been doing but what happened instead was me grimacing and yelping in pain as the therapist pressed pressure points on the balls of my feet. “In Chinese medicine the foot is like a second heart. In China people have regular foot spas for good health,” she explained. “Your foot sore there … that is the kidney. It means you need to drink more water and eat more vegetables.”

Okay universe, I’m getting the message!

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