Now hold up everyone! I do not mean self-care in the form of shopping, or drinking until you forget the entire previous week! That’s not self-care, that’s just bad coping.
Self-care is doing the things you need to do to take care of you.
Today, I’m going to dig at one piece of self-care I succeed at or fail at, there is no in-between. That self-care item is hydration. Yep, drinking good old-fashioned water; not juice, not soda, not coffee, actual straight up H2O. It’s kind of silly that it would be such a hard thing to do, right? Grab a glass, turn on a faucet, fill glass, drink water, repeat often.
Somehow, drinking water became something I did when I didn’t have money for other drinks. That bit me in the rear when I moved to Albuquerque. Life in the high desert ripped through my no-water-drinking self like a flipping freight train. I learned about all the fun things that happen with dehydration and made a few trips to the ER before I figured out just how much water I needed. I also learned about all the horrible things that dehydration can do. Check this out…
How stupid do you have to be to fail to drink enough water? Not really all that stupid. Dehydration at a level that requires medical assistance can happen to anyone, from professional athletes to someone who never even goes outside in the daytime. There are even apps to remind you to drink enough water. It’s built in on smart phones/watches now!
Thankfully, as long as you’re not in the fatal symptoms, you can be fixed by becoming hydrated again and most medical centers can treat you by plugging in an IV so you don’t puke up anything you try to drink.
What Benefits Come from Hydration?
First, let’s look at how much water is enough water.
Eight ounces per measuring cup means that despite conventional wisdom saying we need 64 ounces a day (eight cups/2 liters/half gallon). We don’t really need quite so much. Thirty ounces is 2 ounces shy of 4 cups. Fifty ounces is six and 1/4 cups. This is great news for people like me who try to drink eight ounces on a non-active day and wind up feeling like a water balloon that was filled too much.
So, every day, not just today, but today especially, see if you can drink 4 of these 8 oz cups of water over the course of the day. No fair drinking them all at one time! That doesn’t get you hydration! That gives you a lot of water and then not enough and you’re still dehydrated at the end of the day. With it only being four cups, what about one when you wake up/read this post, one at lunch, one at dinner, and one at bedtime?
If you’re like most of us and addicted to flavors, drop a slice of citrus fruit or cucumber into a bottle and leave it in the fridge. Then, grab your reminder app, set your amount and go!