Coming to the gym hydrated and staying hydrated while you train is more important then you think. There is no quicker way to experience a drastic decline in performance than to not maintain proper hydration.
It's also very important that you have sodium and minerals and electrolytes with your food and water. An easy way to ensure can help regulate sodium levels is by simply salting your food.
Too much water by itself can dehydrate you by diluting valuable minerals and electrolytes. That's why most sports drinks have sodium in them.
After reading an article by Sandra Fowkes Godek who holds a doctorate in exercise physiology and also works out of West Chester University in Pennsylvania.
She’s worked with top athletes at the NFL level and specialises in thermoregulation, hydration and electrolyte replacement.
In her article she states that:
1. 8 glasses of water a day is bullshit. Sandra says drink when you're thirsty. This one is up for debate as I highly believe that drinking at least 4 litres of water a day is very important however there is evidence that shows that too much water can cause the diluting of valuable minerals and electrolytes.
2. Dehydration is rarely the cause of performance loss. It's due to low minerals such as sodium and potassium. Gatorade and other hydration drinks that have sodium in them can't replace the electrolytes lost by a salty sweater. It's too diluted. A drink with enough sodium wouldn't be palatable (good to taste). It's best to eat a meal with sodium (salt your food) pre and post training and to include carbs as this improves sodium transport - one thing I like to do is pour a teaspoon of pink salt into my water and drink that on a daily basis and even throughout my work out as well.
3. You can drink too much water. Peeing clear is not a good thing. (refer back to point 1!)
The take away from this post is to ensure you understand that drinking litres upon litres of water isn't the best thing for the body and that maintaining homeostasis is of primary importance.
Yours In Health,
Coach Anthony Kassis