June 17, 2014 - by

It only takes a 1% change in body weight from water loss to cause a decrease in performance.


That equals:

  • 1 ½ pounds in a 150 pound person

  • 2 ½ pounds in a 250 pound person



Most athletes need 2-4 Liters of fluids per day.


Fluid needs are directly related to your Calorie expenditure.  You should drink 1-1.5ml of fluid for every Calorie expend.



If you expend ~4000 Calories in a day, you need 4000ml or 4 Liters or 17 cup


Tips for Increasing Fluid intake:

  • Start and end your day with water.  Your body loses water while you sleep, so drink at least 8oz before bed and again as soon as you wake up.


  • Add a splash of juice to your water for a better taste


  • Don’t pass a water fountain without taking a drink


  • During competition or practice, make hydration a priority.  Drink at every break in action.  Try to get 8oz every 15-20 minutes.


  • Make it convenient.  Make a habit out of carrying a water bottle with you at all times:  when driving, during class, running errands etc. and drink it consistently.


  • Don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink water.  By the time you feel thirsty; you have already lost at least two cups of your total body water composition.


  • Set a timer if you have trouble remembering to drink throughout the day.

What’s the best way to know you are hydrated?

Check your urine:  Keep it Clear & Pale to stay well hydrated.   



Percent Loss of Body Water By Total Body Weight

Weight Lost for 150lb. person

Progressive Effects of Dehydration


1.5 lbs



4-8 lbs

Dry mouth, flushed skin, fatigue, headache, impaired physical performance


9 lbs

Increased Body Temperature, breathing rate, and pulse rate


12.5 lbs

Dizziness, increased weakness, labored breathing with exercise


15 lbs

Muscle spasms, swollen tongue, wakefulness

When to Choose a Sports Drink Over Water:


  • During a high intensity practice session or competition lasting over an hour

  • After a hard practice or competition

  • Or if you are tired of water and need something different to get you drink

 Benefits of a Sports Drink:


  • Sports drinks contain electrolytes, most importantly sodium, which is lost through sweat.

  • Sports drinks can be quickly absorbed and therefore empty quicker from your stomach, so you have less of chance to get that sloshy feeling.

  • The carbohydrates in sports drinks are an added source of fuel

  • The good taste stimulates the desire to drink fluids

Benefits of Water:

  • Inexpensive

  • Readily Available

  • Refreshing

  • Our bodies need it

  • Settles Comfortably

  • Replaces fluid losses

  • No Calories

  • No Sodium

  • No Fat

  • No Cholesterol

  • No Caffeine



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