Skip Nav
Healthy Recipes
This Creamy Banana Cashew Overnight Oatmeal Offers 15 Grams of Protein
Gift Guide
The 15 Best Mindfulness Gifts to Give This Year
Healthy Recipes
15 Healthy, Protein-Packed Dishes That Will Make You Fall in Love With Ground Beef

How Much Water Do I Need When Exercising?

The Formula Behind the Amount of Water You Need During Workouts

Reaching for your water bottle after a workout is an absolute must, but it's also important to drink up both before and during your workout. Not being hydrated can cause dizziness, headaches, fatigue, and cramps, as well as muscles that feel like lead. Heading into your workout well hydrated can make you feel stronger and more alert, and since your heart doesn't have to work as hard to pump oxygenated blood to your muscles, you're able to exercise longer. Here are some basic guidelines on how much water you need to perform your best and prevent dehydration.

  • Before: Drink about 15 to 20 ounces of water one to two hours before working out. Sip another eight ounces 15 minutes before.
  • During: Sip water every 15 minutes, especially if you're exercising in extreme heat or you're sweating buckets. If you're working out for longer than an hour or in excessive heat, then sip Smartwater, coconut water, or a sports drink like Gatorade to replenish lost electrolytes.
  • After: Weigh yourself before and after your workout. For every pound of water weight lost, replace it by drinking 16 to 20 ounces of water or sports drink. Another good way to monitor that you've gotten enough water is in the ladies' room. If you have a large amount of light-colored urine, then you're hydrated. If it's dark, then you'll know you need to drink more before, during, and after your workout.

You definitely don't want to overdo it with nature's beverage. Although rare, there is such a thing as overhydration, a condition called hyponatremia where sodium levels in the blood become diluted and fall dangerously low. You'll know you're drinking too much water if you find you've gained weight when weighing yourself after a workout.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography
Workout For When You're Angry
Cause of Red Face After Exercise and How to Prevent It
What Is Good Running Form?
How Many Calories Do You Burn When You Run?
From Our Partners
Latest Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds