While I did start the year by declaring my one word for 2018, I didn’t actually set specific new years resolutions. I’ve tried setting new years resolutions in the past, and year after year I tend to drop the ball before I even get started. I’ve also tried numerous times to drink more water everyday. And until recently, nothing has worked for me: I’ve tried apps, and rewards, and schedules. I tried infusions and seltzer too. I’ve even bought fancy new water bottles in an attempt to make suddenly drinking my body’s weight in water “fun” and “exciting.”
Thankfully, about 20% of our water intake comes from food, and I like my food. Because otherwise I’m not quite sure how well my body would be working.
So if you’re anything like me, and wonder how to actually make yourself drink more water everyday, I hope this roundup of tips and tricks to drink more water everyday will help you! Given that we all respond to inner and outer expectations differently, I don’t anticipate any of you to benefit from all of these tips and tricks, but I do think that a few of these ideas will work well for you, no matter what your personality type.
Why even bother to drink more water everyday?
Did you know that every single cell, tissue, and organ in your body needs water to work properly? And that even mild dehydration can leave you feeling tired and drained of energy?
The benefits to staying hydrated are endless. I think you’d be hard pressed to find a single professional that didn’t advocate for drinking a healthy amount of water on a daily basis. Staying hydrated increases energy, improves focus, supports quality sleep, reduces headaches, aches, and pains, decreases cravings, and can do wonders for your skin.
But simply telling yourself to drink more of the stuff, doesn’t always cut it. So here’s a roundup of tips and tricks from around the web (and my own experiences) to drink more water everyday.
My favorite tips and tricks to drink more water everyday
Set a goal.
When you’re first starting out, simply saying “I want to drink more water” makes it hard to hold yourself accountable. On any given day, if you drink one, or two glasses, is that good? Or not? I highly recommend setting a specific goal for how much water you want to drink each day. We’ve all learned our lessons about setting SMART goals from school and work, right? Same thing applies here. Get specific, and make it measurable and achievable. Last year I set a goal of drinking half my body weight in water each day. I weighed 120 lbs at the time, so my goal was to drink 60 ounces of water each day. Was that the right amount for my body? Honestly I’m not sure. But having a specific target in mind helped set me up for success.
Make a game plan, and gamify it.
When my goal was to drink 60 ounces of water each day, I laid out a game plan for how I would achieve my goal, and gamified the process to keep me on my toes. Not sure what I mean? I started by making a game plan. I decided to use my CamelBak eddy® water bottle which holds 25 ounces of water. So I’d need to finish 2.5 bottles full of water each day. That made it pretty easy. I’d drink one full bottle between the time I woke up and lunch, and a second full bottle between lunch and dinner. The last half of a bottle would be with dinner. That was about as complex as my “game plan” got, but it helped me “pace” my progress throughout the day. The other element to this game plan was that I literally told myself two rules: I couldn’t eat lunch until I finished my first water bottle of water, and I couldn’t start dinner until I completed by second water bottle. Little rules, big impact.
Mix it up.
Want to know the truth? I hate water. For something so plain, it’s surprising how much I dislike it. Seltzer makes life a little bit better, but it’s hard to drink seltzer in large quantities (for me). So one super helpful way to up your water intake if you’re not a huge fan of water is to mix up how you consume water. Cold water, seltzer water, fruit infused water, cup of tea. Work in whatever appeals to you most so that you don’t get “bored” of your sudden new bff: h2o.
Buy yourself a pretty bottle.
For some people, this tactic seems to work to increase motivation and productivity in all facets of life. If you want to start running, entice yourself with a new pair of sneakers. Need to stick to a gym regiment? Stock up on plenty of cute workout clothes. Not the most organized of folks? A new, cute planner might help. While this might not work for everyone, I feel it’s worth the (rather small) investment if you’re really struggling to stick with the water drinking thing… Splurge on a cute water bottle and perhaps you’ll find yourself actually excited about refilling and reaching for your next drink.
Visualize your deadlines.
Another fun trick for the visual folks in the room. If you prefer practical over pretty, skip the fancy chic water bottle and get literal. You can decide to DIY this one, or buy something online, but the idea is to physically mark your water bottle with hourly or ounce based goals, so you can watch your water consumption throughout the day.
Amazon has a million options to choose from, but here are my favorites:
- Three Drops of Life 50oz Sports Water Bottle
- Three Drops of Life 32oz Sports Water Bottle
- Bevgo 32oz Infuser Water Bottle with Hydration Timeline Tracker
- Slomg 32oz Straw Watter Bottle with Fruit Infusion and Time Markings
Or splurge on a smart water bottle.
Feeling lazy, or just personally intrigued by all things gadget? It probably won’t shock you that there’s actually such a thing as a smart water bottle. My favorite is DrinKup. DrinKup Smart Bottle recommends the most appropriate water intake, based on your height, weight & daily activities. From digitaltrends.com: “The DrinKup water bottle uses a high-tech smart lid to track your water intake throughout the day. It logs the time and number of ounces you drink in an easy-to-read companion app while the lid itself has a screen which displays your current stats. In addition to tracking when and how much you’re drinking, the bottle generates on ongoing hydration status in the form of a percentage that’s viewable via the lid — as well as in the app. This indicates your current hydration level based on your daily goal that’s calculated given your height and weight. When the number drops below 80 percent, the lid vibrates and flashes a heart icon to alert you to drink. It also sends an alert to your phone.”
Other options include:
- Hidrate Spark 2.0A Smart Water Bottle
- H2OPal Smart Water Bottle Hydration Tracker (super expensive)
- ozmo Watertight Rechargeable Bluetooth Smart Cup Hydration Tracker (comes in white!)
Set a schedule and reminders.
If a simple game plan like the one described above doesn’t cut it for you, perhaps you’re more of a schedule oriented person. When I joined an accountability group last year, we set out to drink 1 cup of water every hour on the hour throughout the traditional “work day”. This schedule was easy to follow and we used iPhone reminders to keep us alert as the top of the hour approached.
Use an app.
Obviously, there’s an app for this. In fact, there are dozens of apps for drinking more water. I’ve tried a bunch, but the simple user interface of Daily Water makes it my favorite. You configure the app to include things like how large your “glass” of water is, your daily goal, and you can set a schedule with reminders if you want. There’s also a simple badge system for iPhone users so you can quickly see either how many glasses you have completed so far, or how many you have remaining – depending on which view motivates you most!
Use the strategy of pairing.
The strategy of pairing is simple. With pairing, two things go together. Always. If you want to do one thing, you have to do the other. Watching your coffee brew? Drink a glass of water while waiting. About to sit down for a meal? Drink a glass of water first. Taking a bathroom break? Drink a glass of water afterward. Getting in the car? Drink a glass of water before you reach your destination. What’s important about the strategy of pairing is that you are explicit about what “things” go together, and you always do one with the other. So, if you decide to pair driving your car with drinking water, it means every time you get in the car you drink a glass of water.
Include accountability partners.
I thought about listing this first, because it is the one and only thing that has actually resulted in me drinking more water, consistently, every day. Shortly after Gemma was born, a dozen or so moms in my mom group joined a week long challenge to drink more water every day. We all set our daily goals. We downloaded an app to our phones so we could join a big group chat. And I set up calendar events for every hour of the (business) day for five days straight. There were a dozen of us whose phones were all going off every hour for a week straight, and when they did, we chugged a glass of water, jumped into the group chat and acknowledged our progress! Perhaps your accountability system won’t be as sophisticated as this, but even sharing your success with one buddy might dramatically help you keep up your new habit.
Alright friends, there you have it: a roundup of the tips and tricks I’ve used over the years to help me increase my daily water intake when times get dire! If you’ve found other ways to help ensure you actually drink more water everyday, share your strategies below in the comments!