Training articles

The importance of hydration in training

the loss of 1% dehydration already implies a decrease of 5% of the yield

If you are one of those who frequently forget the water bottle to go training, read carefully what it means for your body and your performance lack of hydration adequate.

Focusing on your health, in the following table we show you the effects that water loss produces in the functioning of your body:

What happens to my body when it loses water?

The importance of hydration in training

But in addition to these serious consequences, dehydration causes a decrease in sports performance, so that the loss of a 1% dehydration already represents a 5% decrease in performance and if we reach 5% dehydration, the performance will be decreased by 30%.

The importance of hydration in training

Source: Wilmore & Costill (1999)

Therefore, we indicate basic guidelines that you can apply in your workouts and competitions to bring an adequate level of hydration (Palacios Gil-Antuñano et al., 2008):

Before a competition or training of long duration and intensity:

  • Drink slowly between 300 and 500ml in the previous 4h
  • If the environment is going to be hot and humid, add 0,5L of liquid with mineral salts to the above during the previous hour (I divide into 4 doses every 15-20min) and add carbohydrates to the drink, in the last 2 doses. .

During training or competition

  • Drink approximately 1 can (500-600ml) for every hour of exercise / competition
  • Distribute intakes every 15-20 minutes (150-200ml)
  • Try to bring the “fresh” drink (15-21ºC) to make it more palatable
  • If exercise requires it due to its intensity, duration and environment, add isotonic drink (6-8% carbohydrates) and 450 to 1150 mg / L sodium

After competition or demanding training

  • Contribute 150-200% of the weight lost (within 6 hours after completion)
  • Include sodium contribution 0,7 to 1,5 g / L and even other minerals (Ex: potassium ratio 1: 4 with sodium).

Now you know, if your health you want to protect and your performance you want to maintain, take care of your hydration day by day and accustom your body to digest the drinks that you are going to use in competition


Gil-Antuñano Palaces et al., AMD, 2008; 25 (126): 245. Spanish Federation of Sports Medicine “Consensus on drinks for athletes. Composition and guidelines for fluid replacement.

Wilmore, HJ and Costill, DL (1999). Physiology of effort and sport (2nd ed.). Barcelona: Paidotibo.

Laura García Cervantes

The importance of hydration in training


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