Fitness Fact or Fiction: How much water should we be drinking?

In an age where everyone with a social media platform  is offering health advice, it’s more important than ever to seek information from a trusted source. In this weekly feature, Cape Town-based Irish personal trainer Laura Scanlon talks to Freya Drohan about the importance of drinking water.


We have been told countless times that water is essential when it comes to health and beauty. When some celebrities have come under fire for drinking as much as six litres of water a day and an age-old standard (two-three litres) remains the only recommendation we have, how do we nail the sweet spot when it comes to how much we're supposed to be chugging?

For Irish personal trainer Laura Scanlon, that tried-and-tested amount is still pretty accurate for most people, until exercise is introduced.

Sups of water

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"Drinking enough water is crucial for your health, your organs and your mind," she told Image.ie. "We should consume at least two to three litres of water per day, but people who exercise with intensity should drink more. Every bead of sweat on your skin is your body losing water during and after exercise. I suggest drinking sups of water throughout your workout and continue after."

"There is no one size fits all [when it comes to a daily recommendations for water], as each body weight will need different amounts."

"The easiest way [I do it] is to calculate it is your weight in pounds, multiplied by 2/3 (0.666). The result is the amount of water you should be drinking in ounces. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, the calculation will be 160 multiplied by 0.666. This equals 107 ounces, which is 3.15 litres per day."

Dehydration is a common side-effect of our busy lives, and Scanlon pointed out that we should look no further than our own bodily functions when trying to gauge how hydrated we are.

"A good way to tell if your body needs more water is by your urine. If your urine has a dark, muggy colour it is likely you need to drink more water as that is a sign of dehydration," she advised.

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"Water is vital for us, as it accounts for 50-60% of our body weight and is essential for the function of our organs. If you are not continuing to hydrate after exercise, you're looking for trouble. Stay hydrated at all times," she said.

As we are so accustomed to finding out expert's "life hacks'", we were compelled to ask Scanlon for her own personal tips for remembering to hydrate efficiently.

"Drink a glass of water after every bathroom break, have a constant supply of water available at home, don't leave the house without a bottle and set reminders on your phone."

Check out Scanlon's free workout ebooks via her Instagram here.


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