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Tips To Drink More Water


Yuuki

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Hey guys,

 

So I'm working on the NF Academy quest that needs me to drink 3 liters (13 cups) of water, 5 out of 7 days. I am struggling BIG TIME on this. I'm not normally a big drinker at the best of times - I doubt I drink 13 cups of any kind of liquid during a day. I've been doing pretty good drinking more water, but I definitely never even come close to 13 cups and I have no idea how to do so without kind of making myself sick.

 

On my best days, I try to get in 3 cups before school, 4 cups while I'm out, and then at best I manage another 1-3 cups, and that's pretty rare. Most of the time I'd say a normal day for me is more like 4-5 cups.

 

So, any tips on how to get more water in without wanting to kill myself, or making myself sick guzzling water?

A man unwilling to fight for what he wants, deserves what he gets

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I'm no expert on NFA, but 3 liters of water a day sounds a bit extreme.  (ymmv depending on body size, activity level and local temperature/humidity of course.)  Maybe you should contact Steve and ask him how he came up with that number and how serious he is about it.

 

Do not force yourself to drink so much water that it makes you feel sick.  There's a rare but serious condition called hyponatremia ("low salt", more properly low electrolytes) which results from forcing too much water into your system.  Symptoms include puffy flesh (around the finger joints, etc.), dizziness, etc., but in extreme cases it can kill.

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Just carry a bottle with you all day and keep sipping.  3 Liters isn't extreme, when I work outside in the summer (in Virginia),  I'll down 3 liters in a couple hours, and top it off with some coconut water when I get done.

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I would look at slowly increasing your water intake rather than doing 3 ltrs as a straight out target.  If you don't drink a lot anyway its always going to be a massive shock to the system.  I would suggest as others have a drink with each meal and then maybe get a small cup and have one an hour or something.  see what that totals and then either get a bigger cup after a week or so or drink 2 cups per hour etc.  You have survived this long drinking the water you have, don't feel a massive rush to suddenly drink 3 litres of water.  Thats like going into the gym and heading straight for the running machine and putting it on sprint. :)

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12 hours ago, Raincloak said:

I'm no expert on NFA, but 3 liters of water a day sounds a bit extreme.  (ymmv depending on body size, activity level and local temperature/humidity of course.)  Maybe you should contact Steve and ask him how he came up with that number and how serious he is about it.

 

Do not force yourself to drink so much water that it makes you feel sick.  There's a rare but serious condition called hyponatremia ("low salt", more properly low electrolytes) which results from forcing too much water into your system.  Symptoms include puffy flesh (around the finger joints, etc.), dizziness, etc., but in extreme cases it can kill.

 

Hyponatremia is unlikely to happen from drinking 3 litres of water a day. 

 

For the record, you'll find a lot of the more active members around here drinking 4-6 litres a day. It's definitely worth increasing your intake gradually but it will get easier as you go on and eventually it'll seem odd drinking less. 

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12 hours ago, Sahaja said:

Just carry a bottle with you all day and keep sipping.  3 Liters isn't extreme, when I work outside in the summer (in Virginia),  I'll down 3 liters in a couple hours, and top it off with some coconut water when I get done.

This. It's easy to go through 3 liters if you always have a water bottle on you.

 

Also, 3 liters isn't unreasonable at all, even for a completely sedentary day. As long as you're not drinking to the point of feeling bloated and you're properly replacing your sodium levels, you won't have any issues.

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Thanks for all the suggestions everyone!

 

I'm not particularly worried about actually making myself physically sick (a la hyponatremia), more just that kind of sick feeling you get if you chug a bunch of water when you're not actually thirsty.

 

I do actually carry a water bottle with me at all times, and always pull it out and put it on the desk beside me when in class or studying, etc. I'm just not a big drinker, never have been.

 

I'll try purposefully increasing my intake but a little bit slower; I agree that it'll probably be easier to start purposefully drinking less than 13 cups and working my way up as it becomes a habit rather than continuing to struggle with 13 cups. Cause I've been trying for a few weeks now (not always super hard, but sometimes) and have never made it even close let alone 5 out of 7 days lol.

A man unwilling to fight for what he wants, deserves what he gets

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I went from sometimes forgetting to drink at all during the day to regularly drinking 3-4l of water every single day.

I simply put a bottle of water (1l, so about 2 oz) in front of me at all times. And I mean that. I take it with me when I move from the desk to the sofa, from the sofa to the kitchen, from the kitchen to the desk - when I don't have my bottle in front of me I forget to drink. When I do, I sometimes empty the whole bottle without even noticing. I gradually increased my goal, so at first I aimed to empty 2 bottles, then 2,5 bottles, now 3 bottles or more, depending on how active I am that day. I usually don't drink a lot of it at once (to the point where I'd feel bloated) but take a few sips every few minutes until the bottle is empty. I also developed a kind of rhythm. I usually have my first bottle before noon, my second before 4pm, my last in the evening.

So the plan you have has worked just fine for me. One thing that hasn't been mentioned - track it. Write down how much or how little you drank. I have a habit tracker with lots of things I want to do daily and one part of it is hydrate, so when I drink less than I planned, I can not fill out that little blue square and I'll see it for the rest of the month, instead of forgetting about it a few days later ;)

"The way you spend your days is the way you live your life"

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Best tip has already been given: have water in sight, always!

 

But another one that helped me was with the meals. Before before my life changes, I used to eat my meal and maybe, just maybe, after i would consider a drink. Now I make sure there is always a big glass of water on my meal table and I find I drink water, during my meals instead of as a seperate step afterwards. I also tend to bring a water bottle (Like a 2 liter water bottle from the fridge) to the table, which allows for a quick and easy refill, lowering that bar aswell.. 

 

Also consider that with every challenge or change, it won't be perfect over night. I remember having to really get used to more drinking too! But now its a habit. when I grab my water bottle at work and feel its empty, its an impulse, a reflex to step up and get a rifill, rather than a conscience decision.

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for the Americans in the crowd like myself, 3 liters is only 100 ounces. 

The biggest thing for me is having water bottle where the flow is just right that I can drink a bunch at once without having to deal with too much air or not enough water. I have two of these http://www.amazon.com/Thermos-Ounce-Tritan-Hydration-Bottle/dp/B004VFHKAS/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1458826836&sr=8-9&keywords=hydration+bottle+thermos and am considering getting 2 more because I carry them everywhere. For me the opening is just the right size that I can chug almost a whole bottle in one sitting and that is 22 ounces at once! 

Here's an image of it open from the internet:

 5655828360_26680d6fe5.jpg

 

If I try to drink from cups or a bottle with a small opening, like a straw type opening or one of the collapsible tops or a disposable water bottle, it's a no go. 

Ditto to the other tips mentioned, like keeping water bottles everywhere.  

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I like to drop a Nuun tablet in at least one liter-sized bottle a day. A little bit of flavour makes me drink it without thinking about it, and the electroytes help me keep my salt balance. 

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. -Aristotle

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Like others, I always have water at hand. I rarely drink anything besides black coffee and water. In any given day, I drink at least 100oz, usually more. When using a 16 oz dinner glass or a 20 oz bottle, this really isn't very much in a day.  I really notice feeling crappy if I don't stay properly hydrated.

 

When I was working as a lifeguard in college and  when I work outdoors now in the summer, it is not uncommon for me to drink a gallon of water by mid-afternoon. I tell guys I work with now to avoid pop and too many sports drinks too. As a rule for me, 1 20 oz bottle of gatorade for every 2 or 3 20 oz bottles of water keeps me feeling good in the hot sun.

 

I drink as much as I need to avoid dry lips, feeling thirsty and keep urine clear to pale. Often times the first feelings of hunger are actually thirst. You may find yourself eating a little less when you stay hydrated too.

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My target is only 2 liters, and I was having trouble with that. It seems like such a stupid easy thing, but I routinely failed at it. Things that make it work for me -

 

1) Get the right size bottles. Figure out the max amount you are comfortable chugging at once. For me, this is about 500ml (16oz, 1pint). If my goal was 3 liters, I'd go for at least 20oz (600ml, five bottles a day) and maybe try 24oz (750ml, four bottles a day) though that would be a challenge for me. When I was using a 1 liter bottle, I'd take a few sips but and just carry around the nearly full bottle all day. 500ml bottles I can finish in two good chugs, and be done with it.

 

2) Get the right shape bottles. Like @fitjulia, I find a wide mouthed bottle way easier to chug from than a narrow bottle, straw, or cup. (My favorite is actually reusing a bottle of "lifewater", but apparently you aren't supposed to wash and reuse those because the plastic leaches chemicals. I don't know. Other people in my household drink them, so I just take their empties and rinse them out.)

 

3) Key the habit to specific things during the day. For me, I have to drink four bottles, so I have one with each meal plus one more first thing in the morning. If I'm randomly thirsty, I'll always try to drink the whole bottle. The habit isn't "drink a sip of water" or "drink until you aren't thirsty", but "drink the whole bottle regardless of thirst". The only time I won't automatically chug the whole bottle is during especially strenuous activity.

 

4) Have it room temperature. If it is ice cold, just a few sips are very refreshing and I don't want any more. Also, unless it is really hot out, I can't chug a very cold drink all at once without getting a headache.

 

4) Flavor the water. I don't know if this is legal for the NFA challenge, but I put a little unsweetened lemon flavoring and salt. (No sweetener at all - not stevia or anything. I don't like the taste of stevia.) I started putting lemon in it just to cover up the weird taste of random tap water. But chugging a bunch of plain water often makes my stomach feel a little weird, and at one point I had the theory it was an electrolyte thing, so I put a little salt in it. (Sour + salty is a weird flavor combo to many people, but I like traditional salted lassi with no sugar.) If I was super concerned about artificial ingredients, I'd use powdered lemon juice, but I'm cheap and lazy so I generally use plain (unsweetened) lemon Kool Aid powder which is 4/$1 at the grocery store. I generally use a 50/50 blend of regular salt and potassium salt, initially for electrolyte reasons, but now mostly because it has a slightly different flavor that I like. Plain salt is fine though. (I can't remember now if it is equal parts lemon powder and salt mix, or equal parts lemon and each salt, but I suppose it doesn't matter much.) I mix the powder up and keep a little container of it in my bag. I even cut the handle short on a tiny cheap plastic measuring spoon so it fits in the container.

 

 

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On 25.3.2016 at 4:19 PM, Joshua T said:

the weird taste of random tap water

This remark made me so gratefull that there is no (or very, very little) chlorine in our tap water. I remember that back in the states I hated the taste of tap water. And pop, for that matter, when it was dilluted with tap water. It tasted so bad that I couldn't drink it.

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We have well water, and it has a whole lot of iron and other minerals. Mostly iron. It is perfectly safe to drink, but leaves a weird rusty film on everything. Also dyes any white laundry orange, so I just don't wear white. 

 

Installing a really good whole-house water filter is on the "to do" list, but unlikely any time soon.

 

So I've got big 5 gallon jugs that I bring into town to fill.

Joshua - Yoga Ninja Weasel #21 Baby Steps

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For those who don't like their tap water ... why not just buy a filter?  If you're too cheap/tool impaired to get the kind that installs directly on the faucet, you can buy a pitcher filter (of the Brita/Culligan sort) and use that.  I've used one for years, even though I'm fortunate to live in a city famous for its high quality tap water, because 1) I'm picky, 2) the city's water may be clean but god knows what's in the pipes of my apartment building.  The resulting water is clean enough for my tropical fish to be happy living in it, and it tastes like nothing but water.

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I finally counted yesterday. I was seriously dehydrated (post sugar binge hangover), and downed 2L water/nuun, another 24oz of half-caf. Total: 2.7L water, without really trying. 

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. -Aristotle

Arian, arian, zehetzen da burnia. -Basque proverb

Frisian Shieldmaiden level 12 (STR:16) (DEX:16) (STA:23) (CON:22) (WIS:17) (CHA:15)

 Challenges: 11/12.14 - 1/2.15 - 2/3.15 - 15.4/5 - 15.6/7 - 15.7/9 - 16.1 - 16.3 - 16.4 - 16.5 - 16.10 - 16.11 - 16.12 - 17.1 - 17.2

 2017 Goals: Maintain BW BS, 100kg DL - Muscle Up - 1/2 Marathon Condition - Abs

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I used to never drink water unless my mouth felt like I needed it. So I was probably constantly dehydrated to some degree. When I started bicycling to work, I started to increase my water intake. First I just kept a mug on my desk at work and would make myself refill it every couple of hours. If it wasn't empty at refill time, I'd chug it. Not a terrible amount to chug. Then I worked my way up to 1 cup per hour at work. Now I have a 27 oz Klean Kanteen and I try to finish a bottle before 10 AM, 12 PM, and 2PM. I have some water in the morning to take medication/supplements, and some at night for medication/dinner. I have an extra bottle on workout days. It doesn't take much thought anymore.

 

My biggest problem is weekends! I don't really drink water when I'm at home not doing much.

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I just always keep a 1l bottle of water with me. I'll have one while I'm sorting everything out in the morning, one with my lunch, and one after dinner. It got pretty boring at first, so I searched for drinking games to my favourite shows, just replaced the alcohol with water. Jon Snow gets called a bastard? Chug half the bottle! Rick Grimes says Carl's name like 'Coral'? Chug away! The Doctor calls something sexy? Down whatever you've got!

Silly, but it made it fun and you don't really realise how much you've drunk after 3 or 4 episodes...

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My advice would be to carry around a water bottle with you and to drink water with every meal. Also, have a glass before bed and when you wake up. One when you study. It's hard to get into the habit at first. Working out helps because you feel thirstier. Maybe have cut off times, like by noon I'll have had 5 cups of water and by dinner I'll have have 10. Choose water over other beverages. Good luck!

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I tend to not drink a whole lot of water unless there is a whole lot of water available to me to drink! So I can drink water no problem at restaurants where they keep refilling my glass. At work I have a 1L bubba  and I fill it up in the morning and drink it before lunch, then at lunch I fill it up again and drink it before I leave. It doesn't always happen but its more likely to happen with this set up! I also put ice in it and it keeps it fairly cool to drink. In the morning while I wait for the dogs to finish their breakfast I drink an 8oz cup of water and again before I go to bed I do the same and in between I drink as much water as I like. When I first came back to NF a few months ago I made it one of my goals to drink more water... I could literally go all day without drinking anything. But now that I drink more water I find it easier. 

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