Exercise, Dehydration and Chiropractic

Exercise is good for you and is a great compliment to chiropractic treatment!

Exercising outside in the sunshine can be even better for you, especially in increasing vitamin D levels to help keep your bones strong.

But you must make sure that the sunshine and the heat (or cold) doesn't get the better of you.

How to Reduce the Risk of Dehydration Whilst Exercising

In our clinics we see more and more of our patients doing outdoor exercise, as outdoor gyms and boot camps are getting more and more popular.

Wearing the right type of clothes can make a big difference. You need clothes to protect you from the sunshine and should be cool (or warm) enough to allow you to maintain and regulate your temperature. This also applies in colder weather.

One of the biggest problems with physical exercise is staying hydrated and maintaining your body's electrolyte and salt levels.

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You Lose 10% of Your Performance For Every Percent of Fluid Loss

Swimming Chiropractic MK, Northampton Aylesbury

Our ‘thirst-reflex’ is not quite as effective as it should be. By the time you feel thirsty you are already dehydrated.

It is said that we lose 10% of our performance for every percent of fluid we lose and you don't start to feel thirsty until you have lost between 2 and 4% of fluid!

So, that means that you could have lost up to 40% of your performance before you have your first gulp of water! It is therefore important that you start to drink as soon as you begin to exercise, before you feel thirsty, or even before you start your exercise!

Too Much Water Can Be Bad For You!

If you don't drink enough water, you can get dehydrated and suffer from light-headedness and nausea.

If not recognized, dehydration can even result in kidney failure and, in extreme cases, death.

On the other hand, if you drink too much water without replenishing your electrolytes, you can experience something called hyponatremia.

When you sweat, your body loses not only water, but electrolytes and salt, too. This delicate balance of water and electrolytes is crucial to keep your body functioning properly.

Hyponatremia can lead to confusion, nausea, muscle cramps, seizures or even death in extreme cases. This is more common in endurance sports such as long-distance running, cycling and swimming.

Here Are Some Things To Keep In Mind When Exercising:

  • Exercise during the right time of day: Unless you are training for an event that takes place in the daytime heat, avoid exercising from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the hottest part of day. Generally, the early morning is the best time to workout, especially if it is going to be a scorcher that day.
  • Wear loose, light-colored clothes: The lighter color will help reflect heat, and cotton material will help the evaporation of sweat. You may also want to try specially designed, "hi-tech" running shirts and shorts. They are often made from material meant to keep you cool.
  • Sunscreen is a must: It's important to protect your skin. You can get burned and suffer sun damage to your skin even on cloudy days.

  • Stay hydrated: Before you go out, drink a glass or two of water. Carry a bottle of water or even a hydration pack such as the CamelBak. Take a drink every 15 minutes, even when you're not thirsty. When you are finished with your workout, have a few more glasses of water.
  • Replenish your electrolyte and salt intake while exercising: Sports drinks containing electrolytes are good for replacing electrolytes but you can also make your own mix.
  • If you can, choose shaded trails or pathways that keep you out of the sun. 
  • Check the weather forecast before you start your workout: If there's a heat advisory, meaning high ozone and air pollution, you might want to take your workout indoors. These pollutants can damage your lungs.

Most importantly, listen to your body. Stop immediately if you're feeling dizzy, faint or nauseous!

If you experience aches or pains contact the ISIS Chiropractic Centres for help with injuries, injury prevention and improving your performance.

Give us a call! We are here to help!

Chiropractic is so often the answer!

For enquiries please call:

Chiropractic Care

Milton Keynes: 01908 307075
Northampton: 01604 460200
Aylesbury: 01296 489231

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