Ahh, water. Our mind and body both benefit from water in many ways. Whether it’s curbing what we believe to be hunger (when really we’re just thirsty), lubricating our joints or maintaining healthy blood pressure, water is vital for optimal health.
But it isn’t always easy to start drinking more water. As obvious as it sounds, simply deciding to ‘drink more water’ isn’t always enough.
While cutting, we often avoid drinking more water. Whether it’s because we feel or look a little ‘bloated’ or we simply forget, upping your water intake can seriously benefit your cutting cycle.
But how can you drink more? And how much water should you drink in a day?
Here’s how to drink more water and stay on top of your game.
Drinking more water: Our top tips
Although our bodies are around 70% water, many of us avoiding drinking more water simply due to inconvenience, preference, or laziness.
However, drinking enough water daily is crucial for hitting your fitness goals, cutting down and maintaining your general health.
But how much water should you drink a day? Let’s see.
How much water to drink a day
How much water should you drink a day? It’s best to aim for a minimum of 8 to 10 cups of water each day. If you’re pretty active, up this minimum to 10 to 12 cups.
Remember, that’s the minimum amount of water you should drink a day. If you’re exercising regularly, you’re gonna be sweating, too – so don’t be afraid to start drinking even more water.
Drink before you feel thirsty
Many of us don’t drink enough, and when we do, it’s only when we realise that we’re thirsty. In fact, by the time you think ‘I’m thirsty’ your body is already dehydrated.
It’s not uncommon to wake up, head for a pee first thing and have dark-coloured urine – as this is a sign of dehydration. But you can quickly improve this by guzzling down some water throughout the day.
Set daily water goals
Whether it’s fitness related, weight loss, muscle gain or drinking more water, setting goals can help keep us on track.
The simple act of setting a goal can make us feel like we’re holding ourselves accountable, when it comes to drinking more water.
Try setting a water consumption goal each day. You can start off at around 32 ounces (960ml) and work your way up. Of course, during hotter seasons, it’s a lot easier to hydrate ourselves with ice-cold water!
Drink water little and often
Much like food, some of us can be the ‘grazers’ of drinking water. Instead of taking huge glugs, try to sip water consistently throughout the day.
This will help you to hit your water goals and keep you from getting dehydrated. Be sure to keep a reusable bottle nearby, whether at home or at work, so you can be reminded to drink more water throughout the day!
Keep to a drinking schedule
While many of us like to drink more water throughout the day, setting a water-related schedule can keep you moving and hydrated.
With so many of us parking our butts at desks for 8+ hours a day, hopping up to refill your water bottle can have multiple benefits. If you’re a desk worker, try to drink water by the hour, adding up to an average 8 cups (or 1920ml).
If your refillable bottle is even bigger, great! Don’t forget to fill up as you get to work, topping it up every hour, as well as keeping it full for the drive home.
Eat foods that are high in water
There are plenty of ways to get more water into your body, and that includes food!
Both fruit and vegetables are incredibly high in water, so whipping up a salad can benefit your body in both nutrients and water intake.
Here’s a quick example:
- Lettuce – 96% water
- Cabbage – 92% water
- Celery – 95% water
- Honeydew melon – 90% water
- Watermelon – 91% water
- Cantaloupe – 90% water
- Cucumber- 96% water
Get into the habit of drinking more water
Often, it’s getting into the habit of drinking more water that’s the toughest part to crack. Try to set reminders for yourself, so you can start off strong and remember to drink throughout the day.
Whether it’s using an app, a smartwatch or simply an alarm on your phone, any nudge that encourages you to drink more water is a good thing!
Treat yourself to a reusable bottle
When it’s easy to drink more water, we’re more inclined to do so. Try grab yourself a reusable bottle that you can easily carry around with you.
Also Read: How to cut and keep your muscle
Whether you’re running errands, hitting the gym, at home, work or traveling, when you’ve got a bottle with you at all time you’re more likely to top it up and drink more water!
Plus, filling up your own bottle is more environmentally friendly than single-use plastics and can be a great reminder to keep you drinking.
Add (a little) flavor to your water
Let’s face it, not all of us are water drinkers. Some might even say that water is boring.
But it doesn’t have to be. Simply add a slice of lemon or lime to your water bottle, to add a little flavor. Not only will testing out new fruits help you stay interested in drinking more water, but you’ll quickly reap the benefits.
Replace soda and caffeine with water
While a sports drink may be tempting, water is actually going to benefit your workouts more. Without realising, many of us drink our calories through soda, caffeinated drinks and smoothies – that are packed with somewhat ‘hidden’ sugars.
Not only will reducing your sugar intake help you to smash your fitness goals, but you’ll more than likely feel more focused, alert and of course – hydrated – when drinking more water.
Making these small changes can quickly impact how much water you drink daily.
Order water when dining out
Not only will opting for water save you money, reduce calories and keep you hydrated, but it will also count in your daily water intake!
Of course, eating out can feel like a treat, so if you order a non-water drink, grab a glass of water at the same time anyway.
Drink water before a meal
Many of us think we’re hungry when we’re actually thirsty.
Not only will drinking a glass of water before you eat help your water intake, but it can also help you to determine how hungry you really are.
During a cut, drinking water before you eat can also help you to eat fewer calories.
Drinking more water to aid cutting
While water can make your body look a little ‘bloated’, it has so many benefits that you need, so seriously upping your intake can help you succeed during a cut.
Additional hydration will help give you extra energy during workouts, so you’ll be able to push a little harder and ultimately burn more calories.
Plus, drinking more water as opposed to soda or energy drinks means you won’t be adding empty calories to your already restricted calorie limit.
By now, we’ve covered the many benefits of drinking more water from all angles, as well as:
‘How much water should I drink?’ ‘How to drink more water,’ and ‘How much water should you drink in a day?’
To summarize, drinking more water can benefit your mind and body in many ways. While it may feel difficult at first to drink more water, once you make drinking water a new habit, you’ll quickly reap the benefits with little effort.
During a cut, upping your water intake can help to support your workouts. Not only can water help starve off hunger pangs during a cut, but added hydration will give you the energy you need for the gym, too.