As an athlete, you may need more than water to hydrate. If you train daily, work out at intense levels, factor in the air temperature and humidity – water may not be enough although it is still the primary way to hydrate. If you are looking for a clinically proven way to hydrate better than water, including getting more electrolytes and more natural energy than leading hydration drinks, you will want to read on.
If we give you too much info here, our apologies. We don’t want to hold back the great scientific information that supports some really good solutions for your hydration, and we hope you’ll read through to the end. These are solutions so good that once you try them, you won’t want to be without them. But first, the what, why, how, science, clinical proof, etc of HYDRATION.
Energy Drinks for Athletes and Proven Science
Of course you know that your body needs water for survival. In fact, water makes up about 60% of your body weight. When you play sports, exercise, sweat or when the weather is hot – you can lose water fast. How can a sports drink for athletes help you stay hydrated and give you more energy for your activities? Kids and adults both need to plan for hydration during physical activity.
This article’s purpose is to help you learn more about the science behind hydration and a natural sports drink for athletes, including when it is important to choose more than water for hydrating, read on:
Hydration for athletes is fascinating to learn about because if you know how the body works you can use that knowledge to really power your athletic performance. Hydration is the first thing an athlete needs during a workout.
Why is it important to drink the right kind of fluid to maximize absorption? Exactly what happens in your body when you sweat and lose electrolytes?
What you eat and drink, and when you eat and drink it, make a big difference in the success of your workout. Unfortunately, with all the noise in the marketplace, it’s not always clear to know what kind of support you need to fuel your workout.
As an athlete it’s important to you to maximize your performance by making sure your body has what it needs before, during and after your workouts. First, we know that each of us is made up of 60% water so that should be our first clue how important it is to stay hydrated. But more specifically fluid in the form of blood transports oxygen and energy nutrients to every muscle in your body.
Fluid also helps to cool you off by carrying the internal heat generated during exercise out of your body. And producing more heat than your body can handle can result in the need to eliminate heat through your skin by sweating.
Sport Drinks with Electrolytes
The problem is that when you sweat you lose both water and electrolytes. In addition to maintaining fluid balance, electrolytes are used by your cells, especially nerve, heart and muscle cells, to carry electrical impulses, nerve impulses and cellular communications to neighboring cells.
But since we lose electrolytes along with our water losses when we sweat, the body compensates for this loss by borrowing fluid from the bloodstream which means that your heart has less blood flowing through it so it has to pump harder and faster to get oxygen enriched blood to your muscles. This means that you may feel less energy.
Energy loss is just the start of potential problems. Loss of fluid and electrolytes can become very dangerous. As your body temperature increases, there can be progressive deterioration of both physical and mental capacity. It can even lead to physical collapse and even worse.
That sounds scary, and it can be. So, as athletes, what should we do to keep that from happening during training, games, competition, etc?
Hydrating strategically is a good plan, and not only drinking a lot of water. It’s important to understand that your body can’t absorb fluid as fast as its capable of losing it. So it’s important to drink the right kind of fluid to maximize absorption. And that means a drink that contains water, and the right amount of carbohydrates and electrolytes.
Compare Sports Drinks
Today’s clinical tests show that sports drinks for athletes that contain water, carbohydrates and electrolytes, can provide several benefits including balancing your thirst levels with your body’s fluid needs. The human body actually does a poor job of balancing thirst with real fluid needs – so you definitely don’t want to wait until you’re thirsty to hydrate. By the time you feel thirst, you may already be dehydrated.
And if you’re drinking just water to hydrate, your thirst drive may taper off before you’ve consumed enough fluid to satisfy your body’s real needs. Athletes often have long and intense workouts and games, and a finely tuned mixture of electrolytes, carbohydrates & water will encourage rehydration by matching your thirst with your actual body’s fluid needs. It can work very efficiently and provide great benefits in terms of how you feel before, during and after activity.
Another consideration to point out is that you do need to drink electrolytes along with the water because water with electrolytes is absorbed faster and more efficiently than water alone.
Another benefit of sports drinks for athletes is that if they also contain carbohydrates, they can help provide your working muscles with the fuel they need to power your workout longer. A good sports drink for athletes offers enough carbohyrates to provide optimum muscle fuel without interfering with fluid absorption.
In terms of hydrating strategically as an athlete, there are some factors to consider. First is to drink small amounts of cool liquid often as you’re working out. Next is to remember to hydrate before you practice or play. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends drinking 2 or 3 cups of fluid, 2 to 4 hours before as optimal. Then drink some more fluid 15 minutes before. Finally, during your practices and games, try to drink a half cup or so of fluid every 15 to 30 minutes.
The brand we represent can not be found in stores. It is very unique and very powerful, and is used by everyone: Olympic athletes, professional athletes, student athletes and weekend warriors. Shaklee is the #1 Nutrition Company in the U.S. because they deliver products like our sports nutrition that help you feel energized, strong and ready to perform at any level, and because they have the science behind every product to prove how well it works in your body – and with no artificial flavors, sweeteners, preservatives or high calories.
To learn more about the #1 Natural Nutrition company’s hydration for athletes, please click on the Sports Nutrition tab above and scroll down to Performance Hydration for Athletes.
Or go straight to the order site and take advantage of a special: Sports Nutrition Offer that is good until July 31. 2011.
*Scientific information in this article is taken from resources provided by the Shaklee team of doctors and scientists.