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Hydration is a key element if you want to have great skin but there is something else every workout warrior must be aware of. We’re not talking about drinking more water here. If you want to maximize your workout routines you’ll need to choose a beverage that has a well-balanced electrolyte profile.
When we hear of electrolytes the first thing that comes to peoples mind is Gatorade. It’s not as simple as that.
Electrolytes are specific nutrients (or chemicals) present in your body that do a number of things from regulating your heartbeat to allowing your muscles to contract so you can move.
Sodium, magnesium, potassium, calcium, chloride, phosphate, bicarbonate, and sulfate are the major electrolytes found in the human body.
When you sweat your body loses both fluid and electrolytes. If you’re not hydrating correctly when working out you will lose those electrolytes very quickly. That’s not good. The result? You will most likely experience muscle cramps and fatigue. That’s what happens to me a lot especially when I am working out with my trainer. The first thing she asked was “Did you eat a banana?” 🙂
In fact even if you’re only 2% dehydrated you will have a crappy workout. If you find yourself feeling thirsty that’s the number one sign you may be dehydrated. Make sense.
The amount of electrolytes you lose depends on the length of time and intensity of your exercise, body composition, clothing and environment.
A rule to use is to always hydrate yourself before working out. One way to know if you are properly hydrated is to check the color of your urine before you work out. It should be pale yellow.
It all depends on how long and how intense your work outs are. If you’re training for less than an hour and you’re not sweating bullets then water is just fine pre and during training. After training, water with food can provide the electrolytes you need.
You can get electrolytes through foods and drinking certain fluids but you lose them when exercising, sweating, going to the bathroom and urinating. You lose them if; you have a terrible diet, if you don’t exercise enough or if you exercise too much, and when you are sick as well.
So now that you know why electrolytes are important how will you make sure you get more of them? You’ll basically want to focus on foods that are low in sodium and hydrating foods like:
There are no shortage of electrolytes replacements on the market – from sports drinks, powder mixes, dissolvable tablets, gummies, jelly beans, and supplements.
First, don’t take Gatorade. Research has shown that it leads to weight gain, dental problems, and the food dyes exacerbate behavioral issues in ADHD. It’s also very high in sugar. The standard Gatorade Original Thirst Quencher includes 36 grams of carbohydrate in a 20-ounce bottle, and 34 grams in sugar which is almost the same as a 12-ounce can of soda. Another version that they have is Gatorade Zero which is only 10 calories but they use the artificial sweetener sucralose and acesulfame potassium in place of sugar. You know artificial sweeteners are absolutely terrible for your health.
I like to eat and drink foods naturally. Here’s an easy recipe you can try.
Combine all of the ingredients and stir thoroughly.
That’s because cold fluids are absorbed more quickly, getting you hydrated faster.
And let me tell you about a great electrolyte goodie that Herbaland sent my way. I was extremely excited to try it because I’ve been experiencing some of the symptoms I mentioned above from cramping, pain and fatigue. I’ve literally have to stop in the middle of a workout when that happens.
What I love about Herbland’s Electrolyte Gummies is that they’re all natural and they use very small amounts of stevia (which is the only kind of sugar I would use). The cool part about these gummies is they made with coconut water. If you’re a workout warrior you know how coconut water had been labelled as nature’s sport drink. I especially love the convenience of the gummies because you don’t have to carry a huge bottle of Gatorade around. Just slip them inside your gym shorts or your workout bag and you’re ready to head out. They don’t take up as much space as a bottle.
Herbaland’ Piña Colada sports gummies tastes just like Pina Colada. Each 50g serving is packed with all the essential electrolytes at the optimal ratios for your body’s needs.
All this and with only 3g of sugar. You just need to take them with some water to ensure your neurons and muscles are working to their best of their abilities!
If you want your body to function properly it needs a certain amount of electrolytes at all times. You have plenty of choices from; coconut water, milk, fruit juice, gummies and sports drinks. They can all contribute to hydration and electrolyte balance. Drinking plenty of water and being mindful of early symptoms can help you decipher if adding a electrolyte supplement to your workout routine is right for you. I know it is for me.