T Nation

Water is Overrated?

Hey guys

Recently I started college and a lot of my classes are 2 hours long. The stuff they are talking about is so important that I have had to half my water consumption. I used to be drinking maybe…6 liters a day.

I am now drinking only about 3 (little less than a gallon). To my surprise I am not feeling dehydrated at all and my performance in the gym or in the classroom has not suffered at all.
What gives with people saying that we should be drinking so much water in a day?

If anything doesn’t drinking that much water just water down your stomach acids and make food harder to digest?

Water consumption depends on what you are doing. A construction worker will need much more water than someone in an office. There is no scientific backing to any of the claims that you need X amount of water daily. I find making sure my pee is clear is the best indicator.

3 liters is more than enough for most people.

I go through about 1 litre of water + carbs during each workout, and about 2 more litres throughout the day, IF I’m working. Otherwise, 1 gal/day is about normal. Seriously, unless you sweat like a pig, you don’t need ridiculous water intake. I’ve found that overconsumption has made it harder to bulk, as well, and the same works for upping the efficacy of dieting.

Don’t try and take your water too high. I once tested this to see what would happen (so drank like 4-5 litres in 30 minutes), and you feel like absolute shit.
Drink what you feel comfortable with.

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[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
3 liters is more than enough for most people.[/quote]

I’d second that. MORE than enough.

If I had to drink 3 liters of plain water every day, I wouldn’t be able to eat nearly as much food as needed. I get about 1 liter and the rest comes from milk, soup etc. I read that drinking too much overstretches the stomach and screws up digestion.

For me it depends on my activity level. Lately I’ve been doing morning cardio followed by training followed by 4-6 hours of manual labor. Needless to say it’s been easy to drain 3 gallons. On days where I sit around, I might get a full gallon.

3 litres is fine, definitely don’t let it interfere with your lectures

As much water as possible 30 mins before a workout makes a huge difference to training I might add.

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Yeah, when you’re sitting in a climate-controlled environment, you don’t need tons of water.

The more activity and the higher the temperature, the more water you need.

I don’t really monitor my water intake. I simply drink water when I’m thirsty.

I do sweat a lot when working out, but even then I still don’t think about it. I just keep a bottle of water handy and drink when I feel I need it.

I really don’t see the point in complicating water intake.

[quote]AngryVader wrote:
I don’t really monitor my water intake. I simply drink water when I’m thirsty.

I do sweat a lot when working out, but even then I still don’t think about it. I just keep a bottle of water handy and drink when I feel I need it.

I really don’t see the point in complicating water intake.[/quote]

Once, I had severe heat exhaustion and dehydration during football practice. Worse practice ever.

But, drinking water when you are thirsty is a good recommendation. You might not notice that you’re thirsty until actually think about it though.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
3 liters is more than enough for most people.[/quote]

Agreed, unless you’re mowing lawns all day in 110 degree heat.

I would not advise waiting until you are thirsty.
Thirst is not your body saying it WANTS water,its your body saying it NEEDS water.
It takes time for the brain (The Hypothalamus,if I remember correctly) to respond to dehydration and trigger a thirst response,prompting you to take on water.

If you wait until you are thirsty,you are already dehydrated.
There are studies showing around a 3-4% drop in hydration levels can affect athletic performance by as much as 17-18%.
A good measure is to divide your weight in kilos by 30,then that is the minimum amount you should be drinking in litres on NON-ACTIVE days.
e.g.
90kg divided by 30=3
so 3 litres.
It would be more on active and/or warm days,I drink at least another 2 litres,or 250ml for every 10 mins of exercise.

Clean,pure water is ideal for the majority of this,but remember other liquids do contribute to hydration,for instance,milk is 95 water,many soft drinks/soda and fruit juice also contribute.
It has been reported that caffeineted drinks do not dehydrate the body as much as previously thought,despite the diuretic effect of caffeine,so tea,coffee,cola all contribute to a certain extent.

A good measure is to watch the colour of your urine-
it should be clear or VERY pale yellow.
Be aware if you are supplementing with creatine,hydration is even more important and you may need additional water.

[quote]Cprimero wrote:
3 litres is fine, definitely don’t let it interfere with your lectures

As much water as possible 30 mins before a workout makes a huge difference to training I might add.[/quote]

i agree, i drink up to a gallon of water along with my supplements 30-45 min before my workout and another gallon during working out. my shirt is soaked after, suppose thats a good thing.

eat more water containing foods: fruits, vegetables, sauces, milk, fish , etc.

that way you can drink less actual water

[quote]DanErickson wrote:
Hey guys

…The stuff they are talking about is so important…

[/quote]

One day, you’ll look back on that statement and laugh!

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