It’s March 6th, and in true Heidi fashion, I’m already SIX days late posting my new 12 Month Transformation theme of the month! I was so busy trying to make Chris’ 40th birthday THE BEST EVER that I got a little bit sidetracked. I know you forgive me, right?! 😉 This one is worth the wait…
This month is all about hydration, which seems like quite the detour from Month 1—Self-Love and Month 2—Loving Others. So…why hydration? And why do Chris and I post about water A LOT on social media? And why do you get a daily pop up on The TRANSFORM App reminding you to drink your water for the day? Let me see if I can connect the dots for you:
You’ve probably seen our Foundation Five. Our Foundation Five are the five most basic promises for transformation success. The first foundation is DRINK WATER! This is vital to your health and transformation (more on that to come, so stay with me), and it is the simplest promise to keep! If you can’t promise to drink an extra quart of water a day, promise to drink an extra water bottle, or even an extra cup! Start with small steps and increase daily—this is totally doable! When you make and keep small, simple promises, one after the other, you develop Integrity, which leads to Self-Love—taking care of yourself both mentally and physically. Self-Love gives you the capacity for caring not only for yourself, but it also leads to being able to Love Others.
So…Drink Water ➡ Integrity ➡ Self-Love ➡ Loving Others
And here is some SUPER interesting food…I mean water…for thought: Did you realize that our bodies are made up of 60% water? So over HALF of your body weight is water, which means that LESS than half your weight is made up of bones, muscles, and other tissues. Does that fact, alone, give you a tiny hint as to why water—and drinking enough of it—is so important?! If you visualize over half of your body being made up of water, it really hits home how important it is to keep your body hydrated! Of this 60%, the majority—by far—is in our muscles and in our brains. So if we’re dehydrated, you can see how things can quickly go downhill both physically and mentally. You know that brain fog you get when you just can’t seem to think clearly or get anything done? Have you ever stopped and asked yourself if you’ve had enough water to drink? Approximately 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated, living in a constant state of needing MORE WATER! To me, this number is staggering! And you know what?! This statistic is SO easy to fix just by being mindful of drinking more water. Get this: 3 out of 4 people you see are dehydrated! Are you one of them? Let’s change those numbers together!
So what about water is so magical? You’re not going to believe all of the amazing things water can do for you! See if any of these get you more excited about filing and refilling your water bottle. Water…
- Burns more fat! If you drink about 17 oz of water in an hour, your metabolic rate will spike by as much as 30% for the next 30-40 minutes! How does this happen? Lipase (an enzyme in our bodies) must be activated in order to get rid of fat, and water is one of the necessary components to make this happen! On the flipside, if you’re not drinking enough water, your fat loss will decrease.
- Helps you lose weight! Increasing your water intake by as little as 1-3 cups a day can decrease your daily consumption of calories by up to 200 and your sodium by up to 235 grams! Very often, when you feel hungry, you’re actually thirsty. The same part of your brain (your hypothalamus gland) that determines if you’re hungry also tells you you’re thirsty. So when we eat what may be unnecessary and not-transformation-friendly calories in order to fill that “hungry” feeling, we could be taking care of it by drinking 0 calorie water instead!
- Curbs cravings: When your body is adequately hydrated, you won’t feel as hungry, which cuts down on those extra calories you don’t need. And here’s a tip: Drinking a glass of water before every meal will help you not overeat!
- Improves your mental clarity and mood. Yes, please! Do you ever have those days when you feel brain dead or kinda’ foggy or just plain irritable? Maybe you’re not drinking enough water!
- Makes your workouts more effective. Water energizes your muscles, so your workouts will go better, you’ll get stronger, and you’ll nail those transformation goals sooner! If you’re anything like me, sometimes even finding a few minutes to work out can be tricky, so why not get the most out of that precious workout time?
- Helps keep your heart and blood vessels healthy! In fact, being as little as 2% dehydrated can have the same effect on your vascular system as smoking a cigarette.
And here are more reasons to drink up…
- Helps keep your blood volume, blood pressure, and heart rate where they need to be.
- Helps your kidneys flush out all of that waste.
- Helps prevent headaches.
- Helps keep you regular.
- Keeps body tissues moist.
- Helps keep your skin looking good. (Yes, please!)
And even more!
Not only does water regulate your body temperature, but it cushions your organs and tissues, keeps your joints nice and lubricated and transports nutrients and oxygen throughout your body. Isn’t it amazing how many functions and roles water has in our bodies?!
So the next question is… how do you know if you’re dehydrated? Look for these symptoms—ranging from mild to severe:
- Dry or sticky mouth
- Not going to the bathroom enough
- Dark yellow urine (aim for light lemonade-colored urine)
- Dry, cool skin
- Muscle cramps
- Very dry skin
- Rapid heartbeat
- Rapid breathing
- Sunken eyes
- Lack of energy
Now for the question you’ve all been asking: “How much water should I be drinking?” Here’s our simple—and VERY often repeated—formula: aim for ½ your body weight in ounces + what you sweat out during your awesome workouts every single day. If you weigh 175 lbs, for example, drink 75+ ounces every. single. day. And if you’re pregnant or nursing, drink some extra ounces, too. The more the better!
It’s also super important to drink water before, during, and after your workouts, and here are some simple guidelines:
- Before: Drink 17-20 ounces
- During: Drink 7-10 ounces every 10-20 minutes (or more if you’re still thirsty)
- After: Drink 16-24 ounces for every pound of body weight lost during exercise
So… what if water’s not really your thing? Here are some tips to help you drink all of that H2O amazingness:
- Flavor your water! Add a wedge of lemon or lime, or try one of the many flavored water enhancers (be sure to choose those sweetened with stevia or xylitol). Our fave way to flavor our water is with our beloved BCAAs. It makes that water soooo much easier to get down, and it helps our muscles recover faster too!
- Add a small splash of 100% fruit juice. You’ll hardly be adding any calories, and that small splash of flavor just might do the trick!
- Add some cinnamon. Not only can it help you get that water down, but it has some other health benefits too.
- Use an Infuser Water Bottle to add some of your favorite fruity flavors to your H2O.
- Set alarms on your phone to remind you to drink up!
And what’s our #1 tip? Try our 10 gulp rule: Every time your water bottle touches your lips, take 10 gulps before putting it down. You’ll get your daily water ounces in super quick!
If none of these tips work, or if you’re ever really struggling to drink all of your water, here’s a perspective shared by one of our recent DietBet players that really made me think—AND be super grateful: Every time I complain about “having” to drink so much water, I remind myself that millions of people worldwide drink contaminated dirty water, that their children have walked 7 miles to obtain, that will wind up making them sick. It makes my nice, filtered, beautiful water that much easier to drink and be grateful for. Thank you so much, Nicole! 😘
Just to show you how serious I am about hydration, and how much I want you to develop Integrity and Self-Love, I’m issuing you a Call to Action for the month of March. It’s super simple!
If you’re not drinking any water, promise to drink 1 water bottle a day. If you’re already drinking enough water, promise to drink 1 more water bottle a day. You can also come up with your own water-related promise.
And since accountability is also a huge part of developing Integrity, post about your hydration promise in the comments below and/or on social media, and use the hashtag #HeidiWaterChallenge so I can find you!
And I’m promising you…when you’re hydrating your body correctly, you’ll feel more amazing in ALL areas of your life, you’ll be better able to take care of yourself and those you love, and you’ll also be able to do all of those awesome things you want to do!