Staying Hydrated: A Step-By-Step Approach to Calculating Sweat Rate

Have you considered what your sweat rate is, and how it can easily cause dehydration?

You don’t have to stand outside long to know that summer is in full-swing.  It’s this time of year that I ask myself why I even bother showering. I sweat just standing out there!

Kristen Ziesmer, Sports Dietitian - Calculating Your Sweat RateUnfortunately, we can’t stop the sweating. In fact, that would be pretty dangerous considering that sweat (precisely, it’s evaporation from the body) is the body’s mechanism for staying cool (or trying to) in this hellishly hot time of year.

However, what we CAN stop is dehydration, which is often a direct result of failing to replenish your body with the fluids it has lost through sweat. Best way to do this?  rink water.

But how much water?  Well, that’s going to involve some simple math.

How to Calculate Your Sweat Rate

Calculating your sweat rate is actually really simple to do. First, pick a typical day weather-wise (aka 100+ degrees and humid). Weigh yourself with light clothing on and write it down somewhere. Then, go exercise. Time yourself and keep track of how much water you drink (in ounces). Write down how long your activity took, and how much water you drank as soon as you’re done.

Next, change into some light, DRY clothing and weigh yourself again. Write this down as well. Now you’re ready to calculate your sweat rate!

When you’re ready, pull out your notes from earlier and follow this video for step-by-step instructions to get your magic number!

But Wait, There’s More!

As I said in the video, water is just one of the components of sweat that need to be replenished.  The other major components are electrolytes – predominately sodium. And, if you plan on exercising for a long time (i.e. more than 90 minutes), you’re going to need some carbs as well!

Are you an athlete and need a customized training or nutrition plan to support you in your sport?

Reach out to me and set up a free 15-minute consultation, so we can discuss your particular situation and fitness goals!

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