All experienced runners know that getting your body prepared for any big event is a must. Whether it’s training, stretching, or preventing injury – all are key components when it comes to ensuring you’re ready for race day. However, keeping hydrated is something that often goes amiss – but if done correctly, staying hydrated not only contributes to your best performance on the day, but also maximises all the hard work you’ve put in beforehand too.
Our bodies are made up of 70% water. Water is nearly three quarters of who we are. When exercising, we sweat more, meaning we must replace fluids lost more regularly. If not, you’ll feel it. It might not be obvious, but being dehydrated can show in a number of ways – feeling tired, dull headaches, finding it hard to concentrate. These are all things that won’t only affect our best performance, but your training pre-race day.
A recent study conducted by Highland Spring showed that 40% of Brits are unsure on how much water they should drink each day but hitting our daily water target is fundamental to maintaining normal physical and cognitive functions. So, when we are pushing our bodies through physical feats, we must adjust our habits.
Whether you’re looking to set a personal best, place top 10 or simply just finish, we all want to get the most from our bodies and there’s a simple way to help it, with healthy hydration habits.
Earlier this year, Highland Spring partnered with Harley Street nutritionist Lily Soutter (BSc, Dip NT) to create the Highland Spring Natural 10 challenge alongside a workbook of handy hints and tip to hitting your daily target.
How much water should we drink a day?*
Typically, the average adult needs around 1.5 – 2 litres of fluids a day. However, factors such as the weather, temperature, exercise levels and sweat rate will affect requirements. For example, during a training session, you may expend more energy than normal and need to hydrate more often.
Sipping water throughout the day is an easy way to keep up our hydration levels. A great way to start getting in the habit is by taking part in the Highland Spring Natural 10 challenge. The concept is simple. Drink 10 glasses of water* (or other fluids, such as herbal tea) every day for 10 days. Feel better, start a new healthy habit.
If you struggle to drink water, try mixing it up! Check out our simple but tasty recipes that can help make a change: https://highlandspring.com/natural-10
How do I know if I’m drinking enough?**
As everyone requires slightly different amounts of water daily, one way to help to tell if your body needs some TLC is by checking the colour of your pee.
Based on guidance provided by nutritionist Lily Soutter, who uses the NHS Nutrition and Dietetics Urine Colour chart, we’ve partnered with Pantone Color Institute to create this handy at-a-glance colour guide** to our pee.
Together, we created a handy colour scale of five key shades to help you check the shade of your pee. This makes assessing hydration levels easy, so you’ll know when to top up!
I’m eco-conscious, is there a better way to buy bottled water?
At Highland Spring, sustainability is at the heart of everything we do. Our Eco Bottle was the first 100% recycled PET bottle (cap and label excluded) to be released by a major water brand and on race day, you can get your hands on one! Bottles are being given out to all participants, so be sure to get yours.
While you won’t be carrying it on the run, our 10L hydration pack is the perfect to way to ensure you are hitting your daily water goals before and after you train. The pack has a cardboard outer which is fully recyclable, uses 70% less plastic per gram (compared to the average amount used across Highland Spring’s Still multipacks) and is Forest Stewardship Council certified. The inner is plastic and can be recycled in the same way as plastics bags, by returning them to supermarkets. This year we have also launched a 5L fridge pack, which is the second most requested pack format by consumers after 10L.
So, it’s simple – keeping hydrated not only helps with day-to-day function but will help ensure your body is ready for The Great Run Series. Remember to keep your water levels up when out training, check in on the colour of your urine, and sip water regularly on race day.
* The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) recommends an adequate daily intake of water (from food and drink consumption) of 2.5 litres of water for men and 2.0 litres of water for women, in conditions of moderate environmental temperature and moderate physical activity. Different levels apply to children, and pregnant/lactating women.
** Colours based on the NHS Nutrition and Dietetics Urine Colour chart. The urine colour guide and the Natural 10 Challenge are only an illustrative guide and are not intended as advice which should be relied upon. Various factors can change the colour of urine, such as diet, supplements etc. If an individual is concerned about the colour of their urine, they should consult a medical professional for advice. Highland Spring Group are not medical experts, nor are they providing medical advice, if concerned seek advice from a medical expert.
NHS guidance around hydration: