Exercising in Winter can be a great escape for those who aren’t too fond of the extreme temperatures we can get here in Australia. Being out and about in the crisp, cool climate in the Winter months is quite refreshing, though it is vitally important to remember to stay hydrated when completing physical activity during this time.
Why do I need to maintain my fluids in Winter?
With the temperature dropping, it is easy to forget to maintain your fluid intake as, plain and simply, you may feel less thirsty or you may not notice the amount of fluid you’re sweating out. This is because, unlike Summer, where the air is thick and humid, Winter air is generally dry and accompanied by a breeze, meaning sweat is wicked away quicker and doesn’t leave the noticeable sweat marks so it’s far less obvious that fluid has even left your body. In the colder months, you don’t naturally crave water in the same way that you would during Summer despite completing the same activities, which is where it becomes dangerous. An easy way to ensure you’re taking in enough fluids during movement is to take a 600mL – 1L water bottle with you and by the end of your activity, that bottle should be near empty.
What can I do to monitor my fluids?
An easy way to monitor your body’s hydration level is to observe the colour of your urine. Whilst this isn’t a foolproof way, it’s a relatively consistent, cost free method. Urine that is a pale yellow usually signals an appropriate amount of bodily fluids, while a dark yellow – brown colour may suggest significant dehydration and a need for immediate fluid intake. Another relatively reliable measure is the frequency of trips to the bathroom. In general, most adults should urinate every 2 – 3 hours, so if you’re only going two or three times per day, that suggests dehydration. Some other common symptoms include:
But what if I don’t want water?
Whilst water is a great option, it may not be everyone’s favourite when you don’t feel particularly thirsty. There are many ways to spice up your water though. Adding fresh fruits, such as strawberries, apples or lychees, can give a natural sweet taste that can make your plain water taste like a refreshing sweet drink. As well as this, ginger and cucumber are also great options for a fresh flavour.
Give these options a go but if you have any more questions, book in to see an Accredited Exercise Physiologist here https://www.hunterrehab.com.au/book-online/#waratah