Do you often struggle with drinking even an 8oz glass of water a day? I often get asked how I am able to drink so much water and why I drink as much as I do. I mentioned this topic in my 10 Healthy Habits to Develop in Your Twenties post and thought that it would be an excellent topic to further expand on. It seems like such a simple concept, however many people are incredibly overwhelmed at the thought of increasing their water intake. I know that I was. It seems very daunting when you go from drinking almost none to a gallon a day.

About a year and a half ago, I started drinking a gallon of water a day. Before that, I was lucky to hit a gallon in a week. If I'm being honest, I literally only drank soft drinks unless I was participating in some form of physical activity and even then I would drink Gatorade or Powerade. I ran into some personal issues and I kept reading online how cutting out soft drinks and increasing your water intake would help. I was willing to do anything so I committed to drinking a gallon of water (and only water) for 30 days to see what would happen.

Needless to say, it worked. Ever since then I have continued to drink a gallon of water every single day for the most part. Aside from resolving my issues, I also have noticed that I have much more energy, I stay super hydrated, my complexion has improved, my acne improved, I have more endurance in the gym, I snack way less, and it helps to flush out toxins. 

Below I am going to list a couple of helpful tips to increase your water intake. These tips worked for me and I hope that you find them useful as well.  

A Couple of Beginning Tips:

-You don't have to drink a gallon, that is just what worked for me. I started out with drinking half of my body weight in fluid ounces. So for example if you weigh 125 pounds: 125/2=62.5 So you would need to drink at least 62.5 fluid ounces. Find something that works for you. 

-If you decide that a gallon is right for you, I wouldn't recommend starting off drinking a gallon from the get go. I would maybe start with the tip above and gradually increase you ounces until you reach the gallon, which is 128 fluid ounces.

-I would recommend drinking distilled or water that has been through a purifier as a healthier alternative to tap or bottled. 
Tips to Increase Your Water Intake

1. Buy a Water Bottle to Easily Track Your Ounces

This was one of the first things that I did and a nice initial motivator (especially if you get a pretty one that you like). I went and got a water bottle (that I still currently use today) that holds 32 ounces. I would suggest getting a larger bottle that you don't have to continuously fill up multiple times throughout the day. I made that mistake at first and got a bottle that I had to fill up at least 8 times a day, which was miserable and was very hard to keep track of.

I know that I only have to drink 4 of the 32 oz bottle so it is easier to remember. I've been wanting to upgrade to a 64 oz bottle so I would only have to fill it up twice a day. This is a good tip if you work during the day and aren't able to fill up your bottle many times throughout the day. So say you work an 8-5. You could fill that up once before work, drink 64 oz at work and then fill up again after work and drink the other 64 after work. Again, use whatever method that works best for you.

2. Take that Water Bottle With You EVERYWHERE

I literally don't go anywhere without my water bottle. That way, it offers less room for excuses and is a nice reminder to keep drinking.

3. Have a Schedule

This is the part that typically overwhelms people. Usually people assume that it goes like this: I need to drink this whole bottle before 8am and 2 cups at 10pm, one around 12pm, one 16 oz at the gym. No, it does not have to be that complicated. If you keep yourself on a strict schedule like that, you aren't going to stick with it. Trust me.

So like I said, I have a 32 oz bottle and the way that I found was easy for me was that I would make sure I drank at least 2 bottles by 2pm and 2 by the time I went to bed. That's it. It's important to have a simple schedule to stay on track but don't over complicate it. 

4. Infuse Your Water

I did this at first and absolutely loved it and you don't need to go out and buy a special fruit infusing water bottle to do it. It's such a pretty and fun way to spice things up and hit your numbers. I would simply just cut up some lemons or whatever fruit that I had in the fridge and throw them in my water bottle. I liked to use lemon, strawberries, and lime but there are SO many variations of fruits and things that you can choose from. I would suggest checking out Pinterest. People use frozen berries, strawberries, mint leaves, cucumbers, basil, watermelon, kiwi - the list is endless. 

5. Eat Water-Rich Foods

There is water in almost every fruit and vegetable. Pineapples, strawberries, lettuce, cucumbers, spinach, oranges, cantaloupe, broccoli, celery, raspberries - I could go on and on. If you are eating enough fruits and veggies and getting your adequate nutrients, then that will contribute as an additional source of water. Although, it shouldn't be your only source and you should still be trying to drink your water as well.

6. Drink it in Smoothie Form

This was something that I liked to do when I first started as another fun way to incorporate more water in my diet. I would always have a smoothie first thing in the morning. It was very plain and it only consisted of a banana, kale, chia seeds, cinnamon, water and ice. But it's main use was to knock out some of my water intake for the day, so I was okay with that. However, you can make it as fun or simple as you want. Again, there are millions of incredible smoothie recipes on Pinterest that you can try.

7. Challenge Yourself to Try Hitting a Goal for 30 Days

This one was huge for me. Basically what it did was it created a routine for me to where it was just something that I did everyday. It was normal for me to drink a gallon every day. I felt incredible after the 30 days was up, that I just continued doing it and here we are. So challenge yourself to just give it a try. Pick an amount that you vow to hit every single day whatever it may be and STICK WITH IT. Don't give up midway or slack off. You owe it to yourself and to your body to do your very best. 

8. Dont Beat Yourself up if you Don't Hit Your Goal

If you don't get your ounces that day, it's okay. The important thing to remember is that you are actively and honestly trying to incorporate more water in your day. It will get easier. Falling short a few (or a lot of) ounces here and there is okay. Some days I simply don't feel like drinking. Some days I don't reach my gallon, but I pick right back up the next day and try again. Its not about being strict and hard on yourself to hit certain numbers everyday, its about understanding the importance of keeping your body hydrated and making it a subconscious daily action. 

So those are a couple of tips that I have on increasing your water intake. I hope that you found something helpful from my post. As always, if you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to contact me. Thank you for reading :)

With love, Danielle

Visit my blog: daniellecollison.wordpress.com

:)