The average adult requires 8 glasses of water per day. The average runner, who sweats profusely over the course of a run, will need more. It’s difficult to have a hard and fast rule of how much more when some people sweat more than others. However, a good rule of thumb is to drink enough water to where your pee is clear. The only problem is that, if you’re not careful, all of those glasses of water can negatively impact your performance on race day.
What can happen you ask? Well, for starters, something most of us have unknowingly experienced during a run is called “water belly.” That is, if you drink too much water during or before a run, your diaphragm’s movement is inhibited and, in turn, you have difficulty taking in the requisite oxygen during your run. And, lack of oxygen will leave you sluggish and under performing. (By the way, this is why we’ve included ingredients in Complete Runner’s Nutrition to maximize oxygen intake efficiency for extra energy and endurance.)
Two little known facts that help us avoid “water belly” are: 1) The average person can only absorb around 7-8oz of water in 20 minutes; and 2) One gulp of water is usually an ounce. Therefore, it’s a good idea to cut off water consumption 20 minutes before your run to ensure that your diaphragm’s movement will not hinder oxygen intake. And, during your run, it’s a good idea to limit your water intake to less than 7 gulps of water within any 20 minute period. Follow these simple water rules and you’ll easily ensure that “water belly” doesn’t affect your run.