Pre-Exercise Hydration

water glassWhen you’re working out, sweaty and thirsty, you’re likely to think about drinking some water. But it’s just as important to think about it BEFORE you work out and here’s why.

Exercise and Water Basics

When exercising, your muscles contract and generate internal heat. To prevent overheating, the heat must be promptly dissipated via your body’s cooling mechanism (sweating). Sweat cools the surface of the skin and decreases your body temperature.

Maintaining good hydration levels during exercise is critical to regulating body temperature (thermoregulation) and regulating blood pressure. When you’re dehydrated, your body’s mechanism to get rid of heat shuts down which can result in heat exhaustion or worse yet, heat stroke.

Neuromuscular Activity

By keeping your body adequately hydrated, you can perform at your optimal level. Without adequate water, your neuromuscular activity slows down which affects how fast and how hard your muscles can contract. As a result, you can experience a loss of strength, reduced endurance and/or slower reaction and response times.   Continue reading “Pre-Exercise Hydration”