Imagine Balance

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H2O Help

Prior to about a week ago I wasn’t even drinking a quarter of the amount of water I should consume in one day. However, in this past week I’ve had no problems getting in at least my 8 glasses and have probably been drinking more. I came across a similar article to one I’ll feature below and it completely changed the way I drink.

12 Tips to Drink 8 Cups a Day {SparkPeople}

1. Try comfort water
This is a great tactic for coffee and tea drinkers. While you’re waiting for the coffee to brew, nuke a glass of water (or herbal tea), squeeze in a bit of lemon and sip while you wait. Try another cup of warm water after you’ve had a mug or two of coffee. Hot water is also a great treat on a cold afternoon or evening. Invest in a new kind of herbal tea every time you grocery shop until you’ve found a couple that are just right.

*I will say that what I think was the #1 biggest thing that changed my habits was starting the day off with a glass of water. I keep a glass next to my coffee maker and I would fill it up and drink it before making my coffee. It just got me started in the right direction each day.

2. Tag your water bottle
Splurge on the perfect reusable water bottle. Whether it’s your favorite color or a unique design, the more you bond with your bottle, the less likely you’ll be to lose it. Slap an inspirational sticker or image onto it, or even write on it with a permanent marker. Now you’re ready to drink from it throughout the day—don’t forget to refill it as soon as it’s empty.

*I recently picked up an Intak water bottle from Target and LOVE it! It snaps open to fairly wide mouth and secures well enough that I can throw it in my purse. I haven’t really used the intake counter on the side, but I do like that feature as well.

3. Sip up
Gulping all that water can seem daunting. So get a package of straws to slowly sip it instead. You can even pick up a water bottle with built-in straw.

4. Become a connoisseur
Think of water drinking like wine tasting. Taste the various brands and types of bottled waters available (sparkling, spring, mineral, vitamin-enhanced, reverse osmosis, filtered, fruit-flavored, etc). Be sure to read the labels as some “waters” have significantly added calories. Many bottles of water contain two to three cups of water.

5. Drink water and drive
Keep your water bottle next to you every time you hop into the car, or buy a package of bottled water to keep in the car. Whenever you’re driving about, your water will be within easy reach from your car’s cup holder. Think about other places you can stash some water bottles (under your desk, next to the couch, in your purse, and more).

6. Drink your vitamins
Create your own vitamin drink. Consider combining your water with your vitamin supplements, if you take any. There are several powdered vitamin supplements that are designed to be mixed with water. Some contain little to no calories too. If you prefer to take vitamins in tablet form, then promise yourself to drink at least one whole cup of water every time you take them.

7. Fill your dinner glass
Set a glass of water at each place setting at the dinner table just like restaurants do. Don’t fret about drinking it all—just place it there. By sipping water between every few bites, you’ll slow you down and enjoy your meal more, while also meeting your water needs.

*I’ve also been doing this and wonder why I wasn’t all along. Soda almost seems to take away from the taste of my food now that I’m drinking more water.

8. Filter out
Sometimes tap water just isn’t very good. If your well or city water leaves a bad taste in your mouth, change it. Get a faucet or pitcher filter to keep out the bad and leave in the good.

9. Pace yourself
Holding (and drinking from) a cup of water will help you pace yourself at social events, parties and dinners that offer tempting food and drink. Try drinking a cup of water between bites of the calorie abomination you’re faced with. It is hard to eat an entire piece of cake if you have to drink a glass of water between every single bite! To keep the wine, beer, or liquor from ruining your calorie count, drink a cup of water for every glass of alcohol you consume. (I’m a wine drinker, so I fill up my wine glass with water every time I empty it of wine.) Not only does this help to limit your consumption, but it helps counteract alcohol’s dehydrating effects. And when you have a glass in hand—no matter what’s in it—you won’t be bombarded with more drink offers in the meantime.

*I LOVE this idea and will definitely be doing it the next time I drink!

10. Find watering holes
When out and about, make it a point to stop by drinking fountains, drink your water when out to lunch while reading the menu, and by all means if someone offers you a cup of herbal tea, say yes.

11. Combine habits
Get in the habit of drinking a cup of water when you do other things in your daily routine. Love long baths? Fill your water bottle when filling the tub. Working out? Keep your bottle beside you. Heading for bed? Set a glass on the nightstand. Reading by the fire? Always bring a cup of tea along. Develop water habits that go with your routines.

*I’ve always kept a water bottle on my nightstand and never really thought of how much water I get that way. I also forget sometimes that hot tea counts as a glass of water 🙂

12. Reward your hard work
Make a habit of having special water after each workout, for example. This can be water you gussy up yourself with a slice of lemon or lime, a fruit-flavored water, or (what I enjoy) a tall sparking mineral water.

 

How do you get your 8 glasses in?

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2 responses to “H2O Help

  1. Stacey January 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    This is great, I tend to drink a lot of water (since it’s what I drink 90% of the time) but lately I haven’t and since I’m really needing to be hydrated now it seems silly. My big tip for when I first started drinking water was to reward my drinking. I wouldn’t allow myself any other beverage until I drank a whole bottle of water (3 glasses). Then I’d allow myself something else with lunch. Also I generally only drink something besides water with meals or after dinner. Like a coffee drink (I drink decaf), soda, cocktails or juices.

    • taraSG January 30, 2011 at 6:02 pm

      @ Stacey : I’ve been trying to train myself to only have non-water drinks with meals (other than the occasional drink and I guess my coffee each morning…). I’m trying the reward trick, but with snacks. I can get a snack if I’m still hungry after I drink this glass of water. Sometimes I’m not even hungry anymore after drinking it 🙂

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