Saturday, February 1, 2014

3 Ways to Boost Your Water Intake

Most people have a hard time drinking enough water. Just like eating healthy foods and exercising, it's something they know they need to be better about but they just can't seem to do it. I'm no exception. Most days I barely manage to drink one full glass (about 16 ounces), even though I know all the benefits: It helps to curb appetite, makes your skin glow, keeps you from getting constipated (you can get especially backed up if you're having a lot of fiber but not increasing your fluid intake!).

That's why the first lifestyle requirement of The Whole Life Challenge was such a good one for me (and a lot of other people too). For the first two weeks of the challenge, if we didn't have 1/2 ounce of water for each pound of our body weight (so, divide your weight by two and that's how many ounces you need daily), we lost 1 point that day. I set out to get a perfect score for every single day of this challenge, so not meeting my water goal was not an option!

If 1/2 ounce per pound of body weight sounds like too much water to you, try using this online calculator to figure out your daily needs instead. (But be warned: It might tell you that you need even more than the WLC requirement, since it takes into account your activity levels, the climate and altitude where you live, and evengulpyour alcohol intake.)

Drinking enough water wasn't easy. Based on my weight I had to drink, um, a lot! But there were a few things that really helped me to meet my daily goaland drinking all that water made me feel so great (less hungry, more energetic) that I've actually continued to drink the same amount, even though doing so no longer affects my WLC score. Here's what helped me:

1. Drink from a giant glass. The bigger the container, the fewer times you have to fill it up, and the less you feel like drinking water is your new full-time job. I usually use a 20-ounce glass but I'm thinking about going even bigger. (Am I ambitious or what?!)

2. Add some flavor. A lot of people like to put a slice of cucumber or lemon in their water to make it more appealing, but cutting that stuff up can be time-consuming. So instead, I decided to stir in a teaspoon or two of Trader Joe's light coconut milk and turn my water into my own cheaper (and seriously, so much tastier) version of coconut water. It adds a few calories, of course, but they're so worth it.

3. Log it. At first, I was just using pen and paper to record how many ounces I drank after I finished each glass. But then I discovered the WaterLogged app, which makes keeping track so much easier. It even allows you to set reminders (with or without sound) throughout the day so you're not stuck downing two liters right before bed.

Doh! And there's my reminder now. Better go grab a glass. Do you have any strategies that help you to boost your water intake? Please share them in the comments!

Like store-bough coconut water...only better.


  1. I have my work, home, and gym water bottles. Each looks cool and holds 20+ oz of water. So I guess you could say I have accessorized it into being. :)


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