How to Have a Healthy, Hydrated St. Patrick’s Day
Eat, drink, and be merry – It’s almost spring and St. Patrick’s Day is one of the seminal celebrations to welcome the flowers, fresh air, and fun that accompany the new season. That said, it’s important to understand how proper hydration can benefit you during the celebrations. Here are some tips for staying happy and hydrated – Call it the luck of the Irish.
Like Water for Guinness
Green beer, Guinness, and every drink in between – St. Patrick’s Day involves alcohol for most Americans partaking in the celebration, but rather than wake up the next morning with a hangover you’d love to forget, we’ve got a few quick tips to remember when enjoying your Irish librations:
- Alternate alcohol and water: Drinking a glass of water between alcoholic beverages is the age-old piece of advice, but for good reason – It keeps you more hydrated as you drink throughout the day with less potential for severe dehydration and hangovers after the parties.**
- Drink plenty of water before going out: By ensuring your body has proper hydration before you head to your destination(s), you’ll already be ahead of the hydration game!
- Try tropical drinks: Most tropical drinks include coconut water, making hydration a no-brainer since coconut water can rehydrate you as well as most sports drinks.******
- Food is your friend: With so many delicious St. Patrick’s Day food choices at your disposal, why would you ignore the buffet table in favor of another drink? As we all know, eating while drinking is key.
Running a Race? This Part’s for You.
If partying your St. Patrick’s Day away isn’t your speed, there are plenty of half marathons and other running events in March that will get you in the spirit for spring just as well! Here’s what to do to stay hydrated before, during, and after your race:
- Start hydrating before your feet hit the pavement: Going into a race already adequately hydrated means you’ll be ahead of the game and have less hydration ground to make up when you hit mile 3, 6, or 10.*******
- Limit pre-race alcohol intake: While a drink the night before won’t majorly affect your personal record, you’ll be running, it will be sweaty, and staying hydrated is half the battle on race day, so limiting pre-race alcohol will be better in the long run.*****
- Drink water during the race: Don’t fight through to the end without taking a few sips of water. To stay adequately hydrated during the run, it’s recommended to drink four ounces of fluids per mile, so keep that running belt bottle handy!
- Post-race, you have 15 minutes to rehydrate: It’s recommended to rehydrate within 15 minutes of finishing your run, before muscles have time to tense up and you’re sore for the remainder of the day, week, next few weeks… Have water on hand for easy refueling!*******
It’s Not About Luck, It’s About Hydration
There’s no rule you have to drink alcohol, eat corned beef and cabbage, or run a race on St. Patrick’s Day. While many partake in these events, there are plenty of alternatives to enjoy if drinking a Guinness and watching the Chicago River turn green isn’t your thing! But if you choose to partake in the typical St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, following the tips above will help you stay hydrated, happy, and healthy post-run or post-party in the following days.
*Wu L, Chen W, Liaw F, et al Association between fluid intake and kidney function, and survival outcomes analysis: a nationwide population-based study BMJ Open 2016;6:e010708. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2015-010708
**Dasgupta, S. (2015, July 28). Top Five Myths About Human Kidneys. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/top-five-myths-about-human-kidneys-180956088/
***National Kidney Foundation, Inc. (2017, April 26). 6 Tips To Be “Water Wise” for Healthy Kidneys. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://www.kidney.org/content/6-tips-be-water-wise-healthy-kidneys
**** McIntosh, J. (2018, July 16). 15 benefits of drinking water and other water facts. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/290814.php
*****Pfitzinger, P. (2018, May 25). Beer, Dehydration and Recovery. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://www.runnersworld.com/advanced/a20843529/beer-dehydration-and-recovery/
******Breene, S. (2018, February 08). 14 Simple Strategies to Stay Hydrated While Boozing. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://greatist.com/health/hydrate-while-boozing-tips
*******McCrann, P. (2012, June 11). Best Long Run Hydration Habits. Retrieved March 5, 2019, from https://www.active.com/running/articles/best-long-run-hydration-habits