Competitive wrestling is an exhilarating, challenging sport that can take a toll on your body if you are not properly hydrated.
Dehydration can cause various issues, so taking in lots of fluids, particularly water, is paramount to maintaining your overall health. Otherwise, you put yourself at risk, since a lack of fluids makes it hard to sweat and can lead to fatigue, increased heartbeat, elevated body temperature and even a stroke.
To avoid these problems here are some simple steps you can take to prevent dehydration and keep your body fuelled and healthy.
1. Eat Smart: Stay hydrated prior to competition, not just the day of a match by eating a well-balanced diet to ensure your body is getting enough fluids, both from liquids and foods. Eat lots of vegetables, which have a high water content and will help you replace any water weight or vitamins you may have lost while training. Combine this with lean proteins to give your body the right kind of energy to burn while maintaining proper health
2. Drink Water That has Been Filtered Through a Water-Softener System: Wrestling can cause you lose up to 2 pounds of liquid for every hour your training or competing, so you need to drink water before and after. You should be drinking at least 16 ounces of water to replace the possible pound you lost while practicing. Water that has gone through a water-softening system is the best choice as it removes all traces of sodium, so you won’t be bloated. Be aware though, that water softeners work in different ways and therefore water quality will differ, so do a little research online to make sure you pick up the best water softener system that you can find.
3. Drink Fresh Fruit Juice For Energy: When you lose fluids, you also lose electrolytes and vitamins, so if you are training for more than an hour a day they need to be replaced. Sports drinks are often used in this capacity, but they are high in sugar and can make you lethargic and interfere with your muscles recovering from strenuous activity. Fruit juice drinks are a great choice because the sugars they contain are all-natural, so they will replace key nutrients without and negative side-effects.
4. Drink Cold Fluids After Weigh-ins: Drinking cold water is not just refreshing, it is also good for you because it lowers elevate body temperatures. It also aids you in absorbing liquids faster, which is crucial to do between your weigh-in and the start of a competition. Drink slowly, but steadily to avoid stomach cramping and replace fluids that may have been lost to meet weight requirements.
5. Take Water Breaks, Often: Drinking before and after a training session or competition isn’t enough to stay sufficiently hydrated. In between matches drink at least 12-16 ounces of water, preferably room temperature. When you are training stop periodically for water breaks, as they will give you the energy you need to get in peak form and cut down on overall dehydration.
Using these tips will help you train and compete at the highest level, as hydration is the key to your health and success as a wrestler. Remember: train hard, wrestle hard, but take care of your body if you want to continue to compete!
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