Staying hydrated is the most important thing to do when hiking. While it may be easy for some hikers, others have different needs or restrictions that can make staying hydrated difficult. Hikers are recommended to drink around 1L of water per hour depending on factors such as heat, wind, humidity, and how strenuous the hike is. Fortunately, staying hydrated while hiking is possible in many ways. The most common way to stay hydrated while hiking is by drinking water. This can be done either from a tap or stream or with a bottle of mineral water bought at a shop along the way. Though drinking water from a tap or stream is not recommended as hikers should always boil their drinking water before consumption. Highlighted are the top ways to stay hydrated when hiking.
Drink Water before Hitting the Trail
Although this seems like a no-brainer, especially for those who are attempting to lose weight, many hikers fail to do so. Drinking water before the hike is an easy way to prevent dehydration as you exercise. It gives your body a head start on hydration before you even get started. When you drink water before your hike, you tend not to get exhausted very fast. Bring at least 16 ounces or more of water to keep you hydrated. Dehydration is the number one cause of hikers not finishing their hikes and it can be easily prevented by drinking water before hitting the trail.
Get A Hydration Pack
Whether you are going on a short hike, or a long one, drinking enough water is essential to keeping your body going. While drinking from natural sources isn’t out of the question for shorter trips, it’s not as reliable as using a hydration pack. There are many options available these days that will help you stay hydrated while still allowing you to explore the natural environment. One drawback that people initially think about with hydration packs is, “Aren’t they too heavy?” However, most of these packs are very lightweight and ergonomically designed for comfort. Many also come with multiple pockets, so you can carry your essentials as well. These hydration packs come in different shapes and sizes to accommodate your needs. You can compare the best hydration packs and choose the one that best suits you. They have plenty of storage space for all your supplies as well as pockets for various gear.
Steer Clear of Alcohol Prior to a Hike
Any pre-hiking celebration involving alcohol is a big no. Alcohol acts as a diuretic – it causes you to lose more fluids than normal through urinating. You need those extra fluids for the hike ahead of you, so lay off the booze until after! Alcohol is also known to dehydrate individuals because it speeds up the metabolic process. The faster your body metabolizes, the more fluids you lose. It is also worth mentioning that alcohol is a depressant – it slows down your nervous system, so you become slower and more fatigued.
Drink Water before Feeling Thirsty
Many people have the tendency to ignore their thirst in an effort to save water. While this is effective, it can also lead to dehydration. When you feel thirsty your body is already dehydrated which can make hiking more difficult and dangerous (one of the early signs of dehydration is fatigue). To prevent any difficulties while out on the trail, drink water beforehand and pay attention to the signs of dehydration. When you drink water before thirsty, you can maintain your hydration level and stay safe.
Eat Foods That Contain Electrolytes
Electrolyte-rich foods will help you stay hydrated. They also provide energy and taste great. Bananas, carrots, celery, raisins, nuts (almonds), dates (Medjool dates are delicious), baked potatoes with skin on, tomatoes (cherry or grape tomatoes are best), cucumbers (especially peeled), root vegetables, and honey all contain electrolytes. These foods also provide plenty of natural sugars to give you energy and also help you keep hydrated. Though, Don’t go overboard on nuts, raisins, or dates. Too much of these can upset your stomach once you’re hiking (and even before that).
Eat Foods That Naturally Have High Water Content
The best foods to eat when hiking are the ones that fill you up without adding to your weight or making you feel tired because they contain large amounts of water. These foods also tend to have lower concentrations of salt, which means that it is easier for your body to absorb the water. This list includes fruits and vegetables that grow above ground, with most of them being root vegetables. They are all good for hiking.
You’ll be surprised to note that foods that grow underground, like potatoes and carrots, are not on this list. While they can give you the hydration you need when hiking, they also carry large amounts of salts, which will make it harder for your body to absorb all the water.
Stay Hydrated after Hiking
Hiking can be a very strenuous activity, requiring both mental and physical effort. If you’re planning on hiking for longer than one hour at a time, it’s important to stay hydrated before, during, and after completing your hike. The key to staying hydrated is to ensure that you drink enough water throughout the day so that you’re well hydrated before you embark on your hike. Make sure that you’re drinking regularly, and if possible drink two glasses of water or other liquid about half an hour before you leave to go hiking. It is also important for hikers to drink plenty of water while they are out on the trail. If you would like to learn some more helpful tips then click this article, on how to start hiking.
The human body requires a significant amount of water each day to function properly. The average adult needs around 2 liters (8 cups) of water per day, though this number changes depending on factors such as heat and activity levels. You may not realize just how much water you lose while hiking, walking uphill. Dehydration can set in quickly, so it’s important to drink plenty of water before, during, and after hiking. If you are planning on hiking for longer than one hour at a time it’s important to stay hydrated before, during, and after completing your hike.