How much water should you drink when exercising?

What's The Best discusses how much water you should be drinking when working out, hiking or spending time exercising.

water while exercising

by William Austin-Lobley |
Published on

Staying hydrated during exercise is vital for your performance and well-being. The amount of water you should drink while working out can vary depending on different factors. Here's a straightforward breakdown so you know how much to carry in your water bottle.

Before exercise:

Make sure you're well-hydrated before starting your workout. Drink about 500 to 600 millilitres of water two to three hours before you begin.

During exercise:

Take small sips of water throughout your workout, roughly every 10-20 minutes. You'll need more fluids if your exercise is intense or lasts for a while. Some people sweat more than others, so listen to your body.

After exercise:

Rehydrate after your workout by drinking at least 500-700 millilitres of water for every 0.45kg of weight you lose during exercise.

Here are some extra tips:

Pay attention to thirst: If you're thirsty, it's a sign your body needs fluids, so drink when you feel the urge.

Consider the environment: In hot and humid conditions, you'll sweat more and lose more fluids. Be extra mindful of staying hydrated in these situations.

Personal differences: Everyone's hydration needs are different. Your body size, fitness level, and how much you sweat can all affect how much you should drink. Pay attention to what works best for you.

Urine colour: Checking the colour of your urine can be a quick way to gauge your hydration. Pale yellow is a good sign, while dark yellow or amber suggests dehydration.

Avoid overhydration: Drinking too much water without replenishing electrolytes can be harmful. While it's relatively rare, it's important to be aware of the possibility, especially during prolonged endurance events.

Staying hydrated while exercising is crucial. Listen to your body, remember the conditions you're working out in, and adapt your water intake accordingly. If you have specific concerns or unique circumstances, it's a good idea to consult with a sports nutritionist or a healthcare professional for hydration advice.

William Lobley is a Deputy Editor and reviewer for What's The Best, specialising in technology, gaming, and outdoors. He also writes for Empire Online.

Subscribe to the What’s The Best Newsletter to keep up to date with more of the latest reviews and recommendations from the rest of the What’s The Best team.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us