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10 Great Reasons to Drink Water

10 Great Reasons to Drink Water

The human body is made up of about 70% water. Water is essential to life and has some surprising benefits. Here are great reasons you should drink water instead of that carbonated beverage you might be sipping on.

1. Maintain fluid balance in the body.

Your body needs to maintain the correct balance between sodium and potassium in the body in order to function properly, and without drinking water, this would not be possible.

2. Help to control weight.

Sometimes when you feel hungry, you are actually thirsty. It is easier than you think to get the signals mixed up. Grab a glass of water if you are not sure if you are truly craving food. It is also a calorie free drink as opposed to the many empty, sugary calories in a soda, and you will lose weight in no time.

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3. Increase energy.

Since water is used in almost all the processes in the body, when you are low on water, you are low on energy. Try drinking a glass of water if you are feeling sluggish instead of caffeine, which can actually dehydrate you further.

4. Prevent depression.

Low levels of water in the brain can cause depression since water is required for optimal functioning of the brain. So if you are feeling down, grab a bottle and drink up.

5. Glowing skin.

Dehydration can make your skin look deflated and wrinkled. Drinking water can help your skin look younger, brighter, and healthier. You can boost the effect of water by using a moisturizer to “lock” the water in.

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6. Digestion.

Water keeps things flowing in your intestinal tract and kidneys. If you want to keep things regular, down some water.

7. Prevent acne.

Drinking a glass of hot lemon water in the morning has been shown to help reduce breakouts caused by bacteria.

8. Prevent sickness.

Since water helps to move things along, it aids in getting rid of toxins and helps to prevent bad bacteria from staying in the body, such as infections that could get you sick.

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9. Keep muscles functioning.

Have you ever worked out while you were dehydrated? You may have noticed your muscles did not feel like moving. Drink water to keep your body moving throughout your fitness routines.

10. Keep you looking slim.

When the body is dehydrated, it compensates by retaining water, causing you to look bloated and puffy. The best way to reduce puffiness is by regularly drinking water.

Water needs:

Most people need about half of an ounce of water per pound of body weight each day. Active individuals need much more — as much as two thirds of an ounce per pound of body weight due to the increased muscle use (see number 9) and the amount lost through perspiration.

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How to tell if you are dehydrated:

When your mouth is dry and you feel thirsty, you are often in the critical stages of thirst.  Before you actually feel thirst, there are some signs to look for:

  • Joint pain
  • Stomach pain
  • Muscle aches
  • Confusion
  • Fatigue

It is best to hydrate throughout the day since you might not know when you are truly thirsty.

Ways to get more water into your life:

  • Start the day with a glass or mug (see number 7) of water.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables. These staples provide “structured water,” which sources say is the best kind, as well as provide fiber.
  • Drink a glass of water with every meal.
  • Carry a reusable water bottle with you to help remind yourself to hydrate. Choose one that you will love carrying around — it is worth the extra buck or two for your health AND the environment.

Do not underestimate the power of water in helping you look and feel your best! Now go grab a cold one!

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Amanda DeWitt

Writer. Photographer. Instagrammer. Future Educator.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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