HYDRATION - Part 1 of 3


To see how much WEIGHT you lost? NO! To see how much FAT you lost? NO! To see how much SWEAT you lost? BINGO! (Read guidelines below)

Optimal performance is dependent upon more than just training. It’s about an expertly designed nutrition plan, rest, and adequate hydration, all of which work together to help the body run most effectively. Hydration, in particular, can be overlooked and undervalued by athletes/exercisers as part of good training program. When this happens, you risk becoming dehydrated. This dehydration can lead to injuries, heat illness and even hyponatremia (an excessive loss of sodium and imbalance of electrolytes). Dehydration can also make exercise seem more difficult, because of the increased strain on the body.

Try to implement a hydration protocol to best support your training efforts. Consider exercise intensity and duration, breaks and sweat rates as well as these recommendations from ACE on how to maintain optimal hydration:

  • Pre-workout

    Drink 17 to 20 fl. oz. of water two to three hours before exercise. Drink 8 oz. of fluid 20 to 30 minutes before exercise.

  • During a workout

    Drink 7 to 10 oz. of fluid every 10 to 20 minutes during exercise.

  • Post-workout

    Drink an additional 8 oz. of fluid 30 minutes after exercise.

    Drink an additional 16 to 24 oz. of fluid for every pound of body weight lost during your workout. THAT’S WHY YOU WEIGH YOURSELF (before and) AFTER A WORKOUT!

    Source: National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA) & the American Council on Exercise (ACE)


Most Supplements are a waste of money; some can be DANGEROUS.

Popular over-the-counter supplements, including multivitamins, energy boosters and diet pills, send thousands of Americans to the ER yearly with chest pain, heart palpitations, choking and other problems, according to a report in the New England Journal of Medicine. The supplement industry is largely unregulated; neither safety testing nor FDA approval is required before supplements are sold. There are no requirements that product labeling must list possible side effects.

There are certain circumstances when a dietary supplement is indicated, but these usually have to do with treating a diagnosed nutrient deficiency.

It is easy to become overwhelmed by so many dietary and sports supplements available. Exceptional athletic performance and optimal health come from HARD WORK and a body fueled by GOOD FOOD, not expensive and worthless lotions, potions and pills. 

Some athletes, bodybuilders, and average gym goers take supplementation to an unhealthy--and sometimes illegal--extreme with anabolic steroids, pro-hormones, diuretics, and harmful substances. I often notice numerous "users" in many gyms; I can often tell who they are.

One supplement, which a large body of research has proven effective in building muscle mass when combined with intensive strength training, is creatine (sold as creatine mono hydrate).

Always discuss supplementation plans with a registered dietitian and your individual physician.

Source: Bulletin Today, Health Talk and The American Council  on Exerise.

Ralph Santarsiero