As I look back on this week, I’m fascinated. It was an interesting week.
Of course there was the mile I ran on Saturday and other Fitbloggin fun, then the kidney stone ER episode, and then the travel fiasco on Sunday that led into Monday morning. I spent the majority of Monday and Tuesday doped up on pain meds drinking water and then on Wednesday realized I was pain free. Take that kidney stones! Yesterday was spent researching food and my new dietary guidelines and then grocery shopping, which I will write more about later. Probably a lot more, because the lightbulb that went off over my head yesterday seemed like a really important one. It’s been a week of really high highs and low lows. Emotional and physical rollercoaster indeed.
Because of this week it’s kind of thrown all my schedules off. I haven’t worked out since last Saturday’s awesome 1 mile adventure at Fitbloggin. I haven’t been able to work on my ebook to make sure it will be out into the world by my deadline (good thing it was just my deadline). I haven’t done a lot of things this week that I thought I would be doing this week. That’s okay because I’ve learned a lot about taking care of my body and treating it well. Sometimes things happen that through you off, but as long as you take those situations and learn from them you will end up better for it. That’s what I am trying to do and feel like I am doing with this experience.
Because if you don’t learn from a bad experience and improve somehow, what good is it?
At least that’s my take on it.
So, big lessons to come. But the biggest, most important lesson of all?
DRINK MORE WATER!!
Seriously. That’s it. I’ve been pretty good at drinking enough water most days over the last few years. But there were those days where I let myself get dehydrated. And in high school I think I was dehydrated constantly because I never drank water (or anything at all besides coke). And you know what dehydration gets you? NOTHING GOOD!
Mild dehydration can cause:
- dry and/or sticky mouth
- decreased urine output
- muscle weakness
- muscle cramps
- dizziness or lightheadedness
None of those are particularly good things, are they? And obviously, as I’ve experienced, dehydration and kidney stones don’t mix… okay, well actually they do, but not in a good way. Severe dehydration gets even worse and requires medical attention. But most of us are just mildly to moderately dehydrated when it happens and can fix it be consuming more fluids.
What causes dehydration? From the Mayo Clinic website:
If you’re an average adult, every day you lose more than 10 cups (close to 2.5 liters) of water simply by sweating, breathing and eliminating waste. You also lose electrolytes — minerals such as sodium, potassium and calcium that maintain the balance of fluids in your body. Normally, you can replenish what you’ve lost through the foods and liquids you consume, even when you’re active.
But when you eliminate more water and salts than you replace, dehydration results — your system literally dries out. Sometimes dehydration occurs for simple reasons: You don’t drink enough because you’re sick or busy, or because you lack access to potable water when you’re traveling, hiking or camping.
Okay, so if we are losing 2.5 liters a day without doing much at all… we need to be replenishing that! Most sources tell you that you need to drink 8 glasses of water a day. Really it’s different for everybody, but that is a good guideline. For instance, for me, I have to drink more water than that. (YAY!) Apparently relying on thirst during a normal day is enough, but for hot environments and exercise you can’t rely on that and just need to drink.
There is really no reason not to do it. I know most of us don’t. I didn’t all the time. Now I’m done with that and will probably always have a water bottle with me if you meet me. It’s just not worth feeling bad because of mild dehydration when I can prevent it. Prevention is your friend!
Wrapping it up.
That’s my big lesson for the week and my new cause to advocate. Drink your water people. It is good for weight loss, for being healthy, for keeping your body ready for exercise, for preventing all sorts of bad and not fun things.
Now I’m off to enjoy the weekend with my family and friends while I drink my water. Hopefully I will start exercising again too. Have a great weekend…. see you on Sunday for a long overdue weigh in! :)