I am tardy with my thoughts on my own Hydration Challenge, but meh, it’s been a big week.
As a recap- I set myself the target to actually drink enough water every day. I based ‘enough’ on some online health calculators and my fitbit and went with an 1800ml a day target, based on being a female of my age and weight. That was just water, no other beverages counted.
If I’m honest, I already knew that proper hydration was good for me and I often don’t drink enough water. I knew that keeping a big, visible water bottle on my desk and cutting myself off after two coffees in the morning would make me drink more water. I did exactly that, and hit my target on most days.
The biggest lesson from all of this is that there are a lot of people in this world who are unable to avoid commenting if they see you with ‘stuff’ in your water. You know. Crazy stuff like a slice of lemon. The water cooler at the day job is in a busy thoroughfare and given how bastard hot it has been of late, there is often a queue. A queue of people saying things like oooh, are you drinking a salad? Or, oh that’s a bit posh isn’t it? And my personal favourite what the *£$% is that?
IT’S A MINT LEAF YOU CRETIN! SAME AS IT WAS YESTERDAY WHEN YOU ASKED ABOUT IT!!!!
I’m all about workplace banter but seriously this has gone past the levels of polite and awkward comedy now, can we just talk about Brexit or make grossly inappropriate comments on eachother’s attire from now on? Please?
I don’t have any great revelations to share. Most days, I guess I felt ok. Most days I peed a lot. My skin did seem to start perking up towards the end of the week, however over the weekend when I lost out on a lot of sleep this reversed quite noticeably despite keeping the H2O levels up. The same can be said for my general jolliness and concentration levels- water might help but sleep is King.
On the days I didn’t hit my 1800ml I genuinely didn’t want to. I didn’t miss by accident, I was quite vigilant in watching my water ticker add up, but I just could not stomach it. And there is something to be said for stopping when one is full.
That is my real conclusion here, that a water target is the same as so many BS arbitrary number targets when it comes to feeling good. It’s like the current heatwave info. Oooh, it’s above 24 degrees please say out of the sun until 3pm. Only 23 and a half degrees? Screw it go run a half marathon on your lunch break, that’s fine.
Life is not ruled by numbers, but some guidelines are good, and having a rough target in one’s head is a good thing but signs from your body should always take precedence over a smartphone app. If you’re peeing every hourish and that pee isn’t a bad colour or smell, you’re probably ok on the hydration. If your mouth is dry and your head hurts and your pees are dark and stinky, up your water intake. Maybe see a Dr too if this is a regular occurrence…..
I’m sorry not to have a more shocking and clickbait worthy conclusion. I will say that my minimum water goal is now levelled at 1500ml a day. In this weather I’m more like 2L most days. I will also say that there is a lot to be said for that scandal causing slice of lemon or mint sprig. A little flavour is a great encourager, and there may even be all kinds of tiny amounts of essential oils seeping into your drink with little benefits too but someone else can tell you about those. If you don’t do lemon try lime, orange, berries, cucumber. If I’m having some time off the booze I like fizzy water with a lime wedge and some frozen raspberries to make myself feel fancy. Whatever you do, do not slice your garnish with the same knife you just cut up a load of spring onions with. I learned that one the hard way.
When it’s hot and you’re physically active, drink a bit more water. Prone to cruddy skin and brain fog? Drink some more water as well as getting plenty of sleep and addressing other aspects of your health. Hydration is key, but it’s only water.