Just a small amount of dehydration will adversely affect your strength.
Lower strength = submaximal workout performance
You could literally be losing weeks, if not months, of potential gains by not adequately hydrating yourself. A 2008 study concluded that muscular power decreased by up to 19% at a dehydration level of 3% (that’s 3% of total body weight).
Interestingly, the study participant’s perception of fatigue increased by a massive 70%! Imagine taking that feeling with you into the gym – forget about it!
Study: Active Dehydration Impairs Upper and Lower Body Anaerobic Muscular Power - Jones, Leon C1; Cleary, Michelle A2; Lopez, Rebecca M3; Zuri, Ron E4; Lopez, Richard4
What most weight-lifters do is get psyched-up in the short term and successfully keep themselves hydrated. However, as the days and weeks progress, the motivation dies and bad habits set back in.
I stated in this article that the most important principle in the weight-lifting game is consistency! Absolutely NOTHING works if it’s only done short-term. You must commit yourself 100% and stay committed. Nothing short of this will do.
Now the important question: How much water do you need to successfully build muscle? The link above will give you the answer but in summary…
Body weight (lbs) X 0.6 = Water Intake in ounces So a 160 lb man needs 96 ounces of water daily. That’s around 12 x 8 ounce cups.
So, drink your water and do it consistently! You’ll see great gym performances as a result!
Stay Hydrated and Stay Motivated!
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I have always been a “drink when you are thirsty” type of guy. Never been much for forcing water down. I don’t think I get quite as much as your formula recommends.
Amen to that.
I drank my 1l of water this morning and after the third cup something clicked and I felt instantly better. Fresher. I don’t know if it’s just in my mind.
That’s the thing, isn’t it? Consistency is the key when you’re working out. Yesterday, I was working out and I was tossing up between working out to failure in a set with heavy weights or working out to a tempo at 15 reps x 3 sets with a more managable weight. I chose the latter, because I knew I would get tired anyway and it meant more measurable results. It’s still something I have to get used to doing if I want serious muscle.
I’m 167 pounds so the example is perfect. I DO agree that people often fluctuate their discipline with drinking water. Here’s what I do, Drink 8 ounces before every meal, and then 8 ounces after every meal… if you’re like me and eat 6 meals a day, that’s 96 ounces.
The muscle is something like 72% water, so if anything you will feel much more pumped with plenty of water.
Thanks for the update Mark!
I start the day by filling up a 1 liter bottle. I make sure I drink it before noon. I do the same in the afternoon and again after dinner. That’s ~100 oz. After including my meal and workout drinks, I easily cover my 120 oz. Just be careful with the after dinner liter…. you have to get up several times during the night.
@Son of Grok
Beginning to drink a lot of water is difficult at first. I had to force it down for a few days. Not fun. Then, my “thirst” adjusted and I down tons of water constantly.
@ Yavor. I think it’s real. I like to tell people when we’re talking face to face to imagine a dried piece of fruit compared to a moist one. Your body is similar; imagine how well it performs when juicy compared to dried up. Obviously, this is an exaggeration but the study at 3% dehydration does bear it out.
@ Thanks SoG. Good tips Andrew and Aaron.