How to stay hydrated while working out? Check out our recipe for a home-made isotonic drink

Did you know that dehydration and hyponatremia (decreased sodium levels in the blood) are two of the most frequent issues affecting your athletic performance? Luckily, you can prevent the negative impact on performance by hydrating properly!

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Żar leje się z nieba, a może jesteś po 2 godzinach intensywnego treningu? Woda smakuje wówczas jak niebo, ale sięgnij po izotonik - nawodnisz się, uzupełnisz elektrolity. 

Stwierdzenie, że „czysta woda nie jest najlepszym środkiem do gaszenia pragnienia” jest zasadne: najlepiej pragnienie gasi woda, ale z domieszką cukrów i minerałów.

A skoro o cukrach mowa... te, zawarte w izotoniku, po prostu musisz spalić. Włączenie go do rutyny dnia przy bardzo niskiej aktywności fizycznej nie jest dobrym pomysłem. Nawet, jeśli uprawiasz sport amatorsko, nie potrzebujesz żadnego izotoniku. Wystarczy Ci bogata w minerały woda z dodatkiem soku z cytryny i np. listkiem mięty. Taki tonik to też świetna alternatywa dla wody w upały.

Dehydration – signs to look out for 

Dehydration means losing more than 1% of your body mass by decreasing the water content of your body. The easiest way to calculate your level of dehydration is by weighing yourself directly before and immediately after working out (taking into account the amount of liquids drunk during the workout). 

Based on the information available on the website of the National Center for Nutrition Education, the minimum daily fluid intake targets are: 

  • for men – 2.5 liters of water, or 10 glasses a day, 
  • for women – 2 liters of water, or 8 glasses a day. 

Signs of dehydration: 

  • Fatigue and drowsiness, 
  • Headache and irritability, 
  • Changes in skin elasticity (if you pinch your skin, it doesn’t quickly bounce back into shape), 
  • Dark-colored urine. 
  • Important note! Thirst only sets in at about 1.5% dehydration. 
  • Whom does it affect? Dehydration can affect basically anyone – children playing outside, weekend runners, fitness class participants, and professional athletes. 

Hyponatremia – who is at risk?

Hyponatremia refers to a sodium deficiency resulting from long-lasting physical exertion. Loss of salt can be easily observed in the shape of white stains left on your clothes after, for instance, a several-hours-long climbing session. A deficit of sodium in the blood causes a decline in physical performance, swelling, and may even put your life in danger. 
 

  • What are the signs? A deficit of sodium in the blood causes a decline in physical performance, swelling, and may even put your life in danger. 
  • Whom does it affect? Hyponatremia is a risk mostly for athletes training for over two hours, so for people doing endurance sports: marathons, triathlons or biking.