The 3rd Commandment

My book is back on sale this week.  Go to the Products page of the Agoge website and click on the link to get your copy at 50% off.  It’s only on sale for next three days and I’m not sure when (or if) it will go on sale again.  Get it now!

Back to our discussion,  Dan John’s Third Commandment of Lifting is “The best anabolic is water.”

To me this is such a foregone conclusion that I don’t think I give it the emphasis it deserves, partly because it’s as boring to say as my clients often find to do.

“How much water do you drink?”

The usual answer, “Not enough.”

Which says two things.  First, most of us know we need to drink more water, but more importantly we choose not to.  Yes, most of us don’t actually abstain from water or consciously not drink water (although, there are some of us who do), our crime is more of one of neglect.  We just forget to remember to drink more.

To stay hydrated I recommend clients drink at least an ounce of water per pound of body weight.  For me that’s over a gallon a day.  That seems like a lot and the first hurdle is just getting it all down, as most of us are not used to drinking that much of anything.

Next, comes the potty breaks.A fully hydrated system means a functioning kidney and bladder, which translates into a trip to the bathroom about once every hour.  At first this will probably be more frequent.  Dehydrated tissues are like that sponge that’s been sitting on the kitchen counter for three days unused.  It’s all dry and stiff and when you first wet it most of the water just runs off.  Your tissues, like that sponge, absorb water much more effectively when they’re already moist.

The benefits of staying fully hydrated are innumerable.  It’s a testimony to our evolution that we manage so well while dehydrated, but not so much to our good sense that we allow ourselves to walk around this way.  The greatest advancement of civilization is the availability of clean, drinkable water.  We shouldn’t waste it.

Ever heard that your body is 60, 70, up to 90 per cent water?  The actual figure doesn’t really matter.  What matters is the understanding that every vital function of your body is dependent on water.  Digestion, assimilation, respiration, excrementation (Yeah, I made that up.  You know what I mean.) are all dependent on full hydration to operate at their best.

A whole host of common ailments can be traced back to not drinking enough water.  Everything from obesity to head aches to indigestion, constipation, impotence, fatigue, aches and pains of all kinds, gallstones, kidney stones, gout and things I haven’t even thought of can often trace their origin to lack of adequate water.

The key is you have to make the effort and keep it up.  To do this, first get a water bottle.  I find a liter is the most convenient size, if I fill and empty it five times I’ve hit my goal of a gallon plus.  Now, carry it with you all the time.  Always have water on hand and it will be easier to stay hydrated, just sip on it through the day and refill it every time it gets emptied.  Now, don’t you feel better?

Stay strong.


Filed under Fitness, Martial Arts, Motivation, Movement, Personal Development, Personal Training, Recovery, Strength, Strength Training

2 responses to “The 3rd Commandment

  1. This is one of those areas where I am almost always of dissenting opinion. I drink so little liquid it freaks my wife out. I fuel up on Yerba mate on the morning and then sip sparingly. I have tried the ” drink till you float” thing and it doesn’t work for me. BTW….staying in the south. Buildng a new room so my shed can be all physical dojo.

  2. I have learned in life that every statement should be followed with, “Your personal mileage may vary,” and that in the end we all must find our own path and what works best for us individually.

    That being said I’m glad you’re staying local and can’t wait to come work out in the shed.

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