It is vital to stay hydrated, especially when hiking for long distances. If we don’t take precautions, strenuous activity can lead to dehydration.
We must know how to keep hydrated so we can be happy and healthy on our hikes. This means that we need to know what to drink and not drink, how much to drink, and what happens if we don’t drink enough.
What is good to drink on a hike?
Water is the winner when it comes down to the best beverage. Water is great for keeping you hydrated and feeling good. You can also collect water from rivers and streams on the trail, so you can replenish your water supply during the hike.
A water filter device is worth the investment if you plan to hike a long distance. No matter how long your hike is, you should always bring water. You can only bring one type of water. Particularly on hot days.
Juice made from fruit
When consumed in moderation, fruit juice can be a great addition. Fruit juices have naturally occurring sugars that can help you get through tough times.
You should not drink fruit juice as your main source of fluids. Too much juice can be just as harmful as drinking lots of soda. Natural fruit juices should not be sweetened.
Long-life juices should be avoided as they are often mixed with sugar to prolong their shelf life. You can make your own juice from freshly squeezed oranges. Even more delicious.
Gatorade, a sports drink, is a great addition to water. They can help maintain a healthy electrolyte balance in your body. These electrolytes control many functions of the body.
These include nerve impulses and the contraction of muscles. These electrolytes will be lost if you exercise a lot. You will also become less energetic. These electrolytes can be replenished by drinking sports drinks.
When used in moderation, coffee can be a great choice. You can get a lot of energy from a small amount of caffeine, which can make hiking more enjoyable.
Too much caffeine can make you feel tired and cause headaches. It is also a great way to get more water in your system since coffee is mostly water. A cup of coffee per day while hiking is a good amount. You will reap all the benefits, without any drawbacks.
It can be easier to just eat your meals while on the trail than to make time for it. You can bring bone broth, soups, or homemade vegetable stock on hikes.
These meals are much easier to digest than solid food. These foods are also easier to transport in a ready-made thermos or flask. This reduces the amount of preparation required for the trial and there is no need to worry about packaging.
These foods are high in water so you can eat more during breaks. Warm soups or broths are great for hiking in the cold.
What to NOT drink while hiking
Mixing alcohol with exercise or sports is not a good idea. It is not only dangerous to hike while under the influence of alcohol, but it can also be very unhealthy.
You will need to go to the bathroom a lot if you are drinking alcohol. It is difficult enough to keep your fluids hydrated on a hike, but adding alcohol just makes it worse.
Fizzy drinks and soda may seem refreshing but are extremely drying. These drinks have high levels of sugar, which means you don’t actually get enough water. These fluids can’t be replaced when you sweat.
To get the same fluid intake, you would need to consume several bottles of soda per bottle of water. You can’t bring so much soda around, and even if you did, it wouldn’t be sustainable.
High sugar levels can cause tiredness and fatigue once your body has exhausted all of the glucose. You should drink things that make you feel more energetic and better while on the trail. You shouldn’t drink things that make you tired. Hiking is already tiring enough.
In that all of the sugar is in energy drinks, they are similar to soda. Redbull, Monster Energy, and other energy drinks are worse. These drinks are high in caffeine.
Although caffeine gives you energy, it also has a serious drawback. Caffeine, like alcohol, is a diuretic. This means that you will need to urinate more often if you consume too much.
Drinking energy drinks in place of water can cause you to lose fluids much faster, but it won’t replace them. This is the worst option of both.
How often should you drink?
It is important to hydrate before you set out on your hike. You can start by drinking a few cups of water, some orange juice and a small amount of sports drinks.
You will be able to carry less water if you are well hydrated. It can be exhausting to carry large amounts of water or other drinks. Water is heavy. Salt tablets can be worth the expense on long hikes.
Taking one of these tablets will allow your body to retain water. This will make it less likely that you sweat or urinate out. However, this is only for long hikes.
You will need to keep as hydrated as you can during the hike. You need to drink water regularly but in small quantities. It’s better to have one 16oz water bottle per hour and break it into thirds than to just drink it once an hour. Drinking large amounts of water every five to eight hours is the worst thing.
This will make you very dehydrated. Drinking too much can cause you to feel sick and bloated. It is best to drink water slowly and steadily, along with a sports beverage every few hours.
You can hydrate a little easier after you’ve completed your hike. Drink water slowly the next day to maintain fluid levels. You can also drink a whole sports drink after the hike to replenish your body’s depleted electrolytes.
You should end the hike in the same state you started it. This can be done by weighing yourself after and before the hike. If you are able to maintain your weight, you have done a great job.
However, if you lose a lot of weight, this is a sign that you need to stop. It is impossible to lose weight so quickly. What has happened is that your body has lost all its water weight.
This means that you are severely dehydrated. Your body will lose water weight if you consume enough water, fruit juice, or sports drinks.
There are many symptoms that can indicate dehydration. These are all signs and symptoms that you should be aware of to ensure you’re getting enough water. You should immediately take a break if you feel dehydrated. These are the symptoms to be aware of:
WeaknessDehydration can cause muscle weakness, loss of electrolytes, and general grogginess due to lack of water. A person who is severely dehydrated might not be able to walk long distances or finish a hike.
TirednessTiredness, just like weakness is a problem. Without proper hydration, we can quickly become lethargic or tired. This can cause sickness, as well as fainting. This is dangerous when hiking up and down steep inclines.
CrampsYour body loses the ability to regulate your muscles and nervous systems if it doesn’t have enough electrolytes.
Your electrolytes are responsible for controlling your muscles’ contractions, as we have already mentioned. It can cause your muscles to contract too much and cause cramping. Sports drinks can be a great addition to your water intake.