Water keeps our skin glowing, our blood flowing, and our bodies going! Water is so important to our health that going just three days without water can be deadly. You know the importance of drinking water, but for some reason, you can’t seem to get yourself to drink it. Most of your hurdles to drinking more water comes down to personal preferences and mindset. So, I’ve come up with a plan to help you start drinking more water and wanting to!
1. Size Matters Does Matter
The size of the container or bottle you choose to drink water from could be hindering you in ways that you don’t realize. When I made the choice to drink more water, I noticed that I drank less water from my 32-ounce bottle than my 25-ounce bottle. By making a simple switch in bottle size, I was hitting my daily water goals.
For some, carrying a gallon of water with them to work is a badge of honor and it motivates them to meet their water goals. for me and some others, a very large container can be discouraging. Personally, completing a full bottle and re-filling it gives me a sense of accomplishment rather than working on one bottle all day. Bottled water even comes in a variety of sizes to help you with achieving your water goals. As you get used to drinking water regularly, you may be able to increase the size of your container.
2. Sip Slow or Guzzle Down?
If you like slowly sipping your drinks then, a container that has a built-in straw may work best for you. If you’re a drink guzzler, then a container with a larger opening may be what you need to achieve your water goals. Once I switched to a bottle with a larger opening, without trying, I drank more water per water break than I did with a container with a straw or smaller opening. When I first started increasing my water intake, I would do a 10 second count down in my head to get more water in rather than taking small sips. However, if you are a sipper, you may need to take more frequent water breaks to meet your daily goal.
3. Start Small
Nutritionists developed the 8x8 rule as a way to remind us that we need eight, 8-ounce glasses of water every day. If you are currently drinking zero to 8 ounces a day, drinking 64 ounces can seem impossible! The best way to overcome that is to start small and increase your water goals at your own pace. If you only drink 0 -1 glasses a day, start out by challenging yourself to drink 3 glasses (24 ounces) a day. Continue with this goal until it becomes second nature and is no longer a challenge. Then, increase your goal by one glass of water (8 ounces) until you reach your goal of 8 glasses (64 ounces) a day.
4. Some Like It Hot, Some Like It Cold
Water temperature is a big factor for many people when it comes to drinking water. If your water has be icy cold, store it in an insulated water bottle that will keep it chilled throughout the day, at home or at work. If you prefer bottled water, keep at least 2 days’ worth chilling in the refrigerator. If the thought of drinking cold water makes you quiver and shiver, store your water in a plastic container that is not insulated. If you drink bottled water, don’t store them in the refrigerator, store them in a room temperature area like your pantry (don’t store them in a hot garage or trunk because toxins from the plastic can be released into your water).
5. Hydrate Your Schedule
If you’re the type who wakes up every morning at 5:30 am on the dot and drinks a cup of coffee exactly at 5:57 am, use your scheduling abilities to help you drink more water. Schedule your water intake around things that you do every day. For example, drink a cup water before you turn on your computer, get in the shower, or take your phone off the charger. If you like the sound of alarms, you can set recurring alarms on your phone that will remind you to drink water. There are water bottles that can help you divide your water goal (64-oz a day is the recommendation) over the course of the day to help you stick to your hydration schedule.
6. Reward Yourself
If the idea of getting a reward makes you jump with excitement, then using a reward system will help achieve your water goals. One way to reward yourself is to allow yourself to have a small treat after you finish drinking a set number of ounces. You can treat yourself to a mini-sized dark chocolate bar or a 100-calorie snack when you finish half of your water goal. You can even implement a weekly reward system and purchase yourself something like new lipstick, clothes, or something to spruce up your house. A more strict way of implementing rewards are to not allowing yourself to do something until you drink a cup of water. For example, the only way you can have your morning coffee or your favorite snack is to FIRST drink a cup of water.
7. Always Choose Your Favorite
Picture yourself drinking your favorite drink. Is it in a tall glass with ice, a plastic bottle, a mug? The container you just pictured should be the one that you use to drink your water! Without realizing it, most of us have a cup that we always reach for over the others in the cabinet. I personally prefer a cup that’s made from glass and not plastic. You may have a favorite mug because it was a Mother’s Day gift. Whatever your reasoning, you won’t drink anything, especially water, from a cup or container you don’t like.
Keep your favorites in mind when you’re ordering water at restaurants. Request something that is similar to your favorite cup or glass. When you’re taking your water away from home with you, a stainless steel container is a good alternative to if your favorite is something made from glass.
8. Add Natural Flavor
I saved this tip for last because I want you to embrace the taste of natural water. However, adding natural flavors to your water can help you add more water to your diet. Try adding slices of fruit like oranges, lemons, and grapefruit for a hint of citrus. For a refreshing taste, try adding fresh mint leaves or ginger. These natural flavored water recipes usually work best by adding them to a container of water and refrigerating it overnight.
Drinking more water is a major step to having better health. These small tips can help you reach and exceed those goals. Now, drink up!
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