The Importance of Drinking Water During and After Exercise

The Importance of Drinking Water During and After Exercise

Did you know, right after exercising, most of the weight you lose directly is from water loss, and not from fat. Whether you exercise to lose weight, to stay healthy or whether you are an athlete, staying hydrated is especially important for those practicing energy-intensive sports. Your body significantly heats up in the process of exercising, and in order to cool down, the body releases water in the form of sweat. This can significantly deplete the body of its hydration. Drinking water would help your body restore the much-needed hydration as well as providing various other health benefits to those seeking to adopt a healthier lifestyle.


1. Your body lose water during exercise

As you work out, your body burns a tremendous amount of protein, carbohydrate and fat, turning them into energy. This process causes the body to heat up and causes your heart to beat faster, as well as recognizably heat up from the activities. During this process, plenty of water are lost in sweating and perspiration or breathing.


2. Why do I need water during and after exercising?

Since water makes up 75 percent of your overall muscle tissues, proper hydration is required to support those tissues. In other words, water helps your body achieve its peak physical performance. In the case of dehydration, your performance can severely be impacted and it can cause other problems such as muscle cramps. Given that the joint is also primarily composed of water, dehydration can also cause joint pain.


3. How much water should I drink during and after exercising?

The amount of water you should drink depends on the activities, type of sport and the amount of sweat you lose. However, as a general rule of thumb, the American Council on exercise recommends an intake of approximately 200-300mL or 7 to 10 ounces of water every 20 minutes during your workout session. That’s approximately a glass of water every 20 minutes!

You should also drink water after working out since that is when your body can take in water efficiently. It is also recommended to drink another cup of water 30 minutes after working out in order to restore and balance your body’s water supply.  


4. What you should avoid drinking while exercising

After you lose a lot of hydration, you would feel a heavy sensation of thirst. It is not recommended to drink sugary beverages after a workout because the thirstiness would prompt you into drinking more than you should. Sugary substances are high in calories and it can severely impact your body, especially if you are trying to lose weight.

Although coffee or beverages containing caffeine are known for their performance boosting abilities, it should only be enjoyed before working out. Caffeine increases your body’s stress hormone, cortisol. Caffeine can also make you urinate more often, disrupt your diet, and cause further dehydration.


To conclude, whether you are exercising for a healthy lifestyle or practicing extreme sport, water should always be an essential part of your routine. As seen for their benefits, and how your body desperately needs water, it would be very convenient to always bring a bottle of water wherever you go. The next time you go out for a jog or to the gym, always remember, water is your best friend!