How much Water should I drink when Hiking? | #ScienceSaturday

Are you drinking enough Water while you Hike?

Thomas DeLauer discusses how much water you should consume while hiking, when to hydrate, and how Magnesium plays a key role in hydration. And if you're located near Scottsdale, AZ like we are, make sure you stay hydrated as it gets hotter in the Valley of the Sun!

Learn more about  Jigsaw Electrolyte Supreme™.

Thomas is a member of Jigsaw's Business & Scientific Advisory Board.

Learn more about  Thomas DeLauer.


Fluid and electrolyte loss and replacement in exercise

Fluid replacement during exercise

Update on the relationship between magnesium and exercise

Magnesium enhances exercise performance via increasing glucose availability in the blood, muscle and brain during exercise

Effects of magnesium on exercise performance and plasma glucose and lactate concentrations in rats using a novel blood sampling technique

Water, hydration and health

Water tips for efficient exercise

Full Video Transcript:

Hey, it's Thomas DeLauer with Jigsaw Health and today I'm talking about hydrating when you're going for a hike in the desert.

See, here at Jigsaw, we're in Phoenix, Arizona and in case you didn't know that, it's kind of in the desert. 

As summer's starting to approach, we're thinking about getting outside, we're thinking about hiking and that means that we're going to be depleting a lot more minerals and we're going to be becoming a lot more dehydrated.

So this video comes from the suggestions of some of our viewers who wanted to know how much water should we be drinking and how many minerals should we be taking in if we're going to be hiking when it's excessively warm?

Well, first and foremost, let me explain how this balance works, how fluid balance works.

You see, when it comes down to hiking and getting your electrolytes in, it all comes down to something called osmolality.

That osmolality is the balance between water, sodium and ultimately your electrolytes and I always use this analogy 'cause I think it makes a lot of sense.

If you have two water balloons, one has just water in it and the other one has water with sodium in it.

If you were to magically connect those two water balloons, you would find that the water balloon that has the sodium would draw out almost all the water from the water balloon that doesn't have sodium.

That is osmolality working at its finest. That's called an isotonic state.

We wanna create the same kinda state when we're exercising. We want our body to be encouraged to hold onto water but there are five different factors that we have to pay attention to especially when it's hot out.

  1. The temperature – How hot is it?
  2. The intensity of your exercise – How hard are you working to encourage sweating?
  3. Your genetic factors – who are you as a person, do you naturally sweat a lot more?
  4. Humidity – How humid is it? That's going to encourage you to sweat more. That's gonna create that perception of whether you're sweating more or not simply because the water doesn't evaporate off your skin as easy.
  5. What kind of clothes are you wearing – It's a simple thought but it plays a big difference.

So those five factors can determine how quickly you're going to deplete water but what is really really important when it comes to working out in the heat is keeping your fluid levels more stabled  before your workout than during and I'll explain how that works in just a second.

It's important that you know that water is absorbed through the small intestine and it is required to have a level of sodium and even some levels of glucose to shuttle that water in from the small intestine.

So if you don't have sodium coming in, that can't really dictate the absorption of water through the small intestine.

So I'm gonna get to how you balance that in one second but like I mentioned, you wanna keep your fluid levels high before your workout rather than just during.

Here's a simple break down that might help you understand the kind of guidelines you should follow.

When it's hot out, try to consume about 50% of the water two hours before your workout. 

Then you wanna try to consume about 20% of the water 15 minutes before your workout.

Then you're taking sips of about 5% throughout the rest of your workout.

Now, if you're using 100 milliliters, it would look something like this:

  • Two hours prior to the workout, drink about 50 milliliters.
  • 15 minutes prior to the workout, drink about 20 milliliters.
  • Then if it's a four to six hour hike, drink about five milliliters of water every 15 minutes to 30 minutes.

Pretty darn simple right then and there but this wouldn't be a Jigsaw Health magnesium video if I didn't bring magnesium into the equation.

So we all know about magnesium. We all know it's importance when it comes down to absorbing your minerals and actually getting a lot out of your body. 

But what about when we're hiking?

Well, I think it's time that I reference a 2009 study that showed something pretty interesting and it's all gonna make sense and you're not gonna think I'm just this crazy mad scientist in just a second.

So this 2009 study took two different groups. One group was given a magnesium supplement. One group was not but both groups were exerting a lot of effort on treadmills.

What the study concluded was that those that took a magnesium supplement ended up having much better performance on the treadmill but they also had higher levels of blood glucose while working out.

Why is that a good thing?

Well, the higher levels of blood glucose tell us that their small intestine was absorbing glucose better and was also absorbing water better all because magnesium was present. You see, we're so chronically depleted in magnesium, we're deficient in it.

When we actually put it back in our bodies, it starts to regulate fluid a lot better.

So what should you do?

Well, for one, take the  Jigsaw Health Electrolyte Supreme™ along with your pre-workout fluids.

That way, you're getting yourself the minerals but you're also getting yourself the magnesium, not just the sodium like a lot of major brand electrolyte drinks will do.

You also wanna make sure that you're sipping slightly throughout the workout.

USA shipping map


Coupon "" has been applied and will be in your shopping cart when you’re ready to place your order.
Thanks for shopping with us! — Team Jigsaw

Buy more & save up to 10%*

It's fun to mix, match & save!

Buy more and save

# of Items


3 or 4

Save 5%


Save 10%

* Bulk discount exclusions:

Sample packets, such as the Jigsaw MagSoothe 7 Pack, are excluded.