I don’t know about all of you, but I am the worst at drinking my water every day. I know it’s good for me, I know I should do it, but I just don’t seem to be able to meet whatever recent requirement I’ve read for water intake each day. Part of this is because I’m confused about it. There are so many different theories – drink 8 glasses a day, drink your body weight in ounces, drink half your body weight in ounces, any liquid that doesn’t have caffeine or sugar counts, only pure water counts etc. The other part of my problem is that drinking water doesn’t really appeal to me and the thought of drinking so much overwhelms me. Don’t get me wrong, I do drink water and other beverages. But I don’t drink enough and none of the popular strategies I’ve tried seem to work for me:
- The giant 64-ounce bottle. I used to see these giant bottles in every store. I bought one, filled it in the morning, and there it sat on my desk all day. It was heavy, unappealing, and presented itself as a job I just didn’t want to do.
- Water journals and alarms. This didn’t help either. I would skip the alarm or be caught up in something when it went off and didn’t want to stop what I was doing to go grab a glass of water. I found it difficult to pre-determine the time I would want or need to take a break.
- Three 24-ounce bottles. Again, this just wasn’t something that appealed to me. The big bottle seemed like a lot and I would fall behind on drinking and then drink a lot to make up for it and it just didn’t stick as a habit for me.
I had to figure this out, so I took a good look at my daily activity and focused on the following:
- I work from home. My office is in our old dining room, which is directly next to the kitchen and only about 15 feet away from the water dispenser in our refrigerator.
- I’m trying to declutter and having a bunch of water bottles around stresses me out. We already have plenty of drinking glasses in the house.
- I tend to get up for a snack when I need a moment away from work. With the water bottle on my desk, I am walking away from it, not to it. At these moments I usually reach for a piece of chocolate or a sweet snack as a distraction from what I’m doing.
- I do not like to drink a large glass of anything at once. 6 ounces is my limit.
With my own lifestyle in mind, I put together the following plan and so far it’s working for me.
- First thing in the morning, drink a small 6-ounce glass of water. Set the glass on the counter next to the fridge for continued use throughout the day.
- Drink another glass before I start working, but do not keep food or any beverage on my desk.
- Get up at 1-2 hour increments throughout the day and drink a 6-ounce glass of water. This is a good break for me and gives me a reason to get up and reset my thinking without grabbing a sweet snack all the time.
- Drink a glass before, during, and after my workout. I typically workout at home so it’s easy to have a glass of water sitting on the dresser for me to drink during breaks.
- Drink a glass with dinner and another in the evening.
This strategy is helping me to drink a lot more water than I have in the past. I enjoy the water I drink because it’s cold and fresh from the fridge, and it’s also helping me to take needed breaks from work and refocus my mind and my energy. When I’m out of the office and running errands, I know I need to bring some with me, so I do have a travel bottle for those days. Now if I could just stop leaving it in the car!
Please keep in mind that whenever I post a nutrition, fitness, or health tip, I am only sharing what has worked for me. I’m not recommending, advising, or in any way suggesting that this is a good solution or something that will work for everyone. We are all unique and what works for someone may just not do it for someone else. But the more we share, the more we learn, and for me, finding a strategy to get my water in is something worth sharing.