We hope that you love our articles and find them useful and informative! In full transparency, we may collect a small commission (at no cost to you!) when you click on some of the links in this post. These funds allow us to keep the site up and continue to write great articles. Click here to learn about our review process and affiliate structure.

Should You Drink Water While Running: Your Guide to Fueling Your Body

Runners know the importance of staying hydrated. We all know we should ideally be drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day to stay fully hydrated. But when you are running, there can confusion about whether or not you should drink water on your run.

If you are just going for a short run, hydration isn’t a key concern. But as your runs get longer – and as the weather warms up outside – you need to ensure you are properly hydrated.

But if you are new to running, you might be concerned that drinking mid-run will cause cramping or other issues. In this article, we’ll explore if this is the case and how necessary it is to drink water while running.

Should You Drink Water Before Running?

Running is a high intensity activity and causes many people to sweat. It’s important to fuel up your body before going for a run to keep your body hydrated.

If you plan on running for a short amount of time, it is then advisable to consume at least two to three glasses of water two to three hours before you run. But if you plan to run for longer than sixty minutes, then you will need an extra boost for the body which can be supplemented by sports drinks.

Should You Drink Water While Running?

A lot of people ask if it is okay to drink water while running. Many believe that drinking water while running may lead to gastrointestinal distress. While some people think they should drink water while running to avoid dehydration—which is, in fact, true.

One of the physical and immediate results of running is sweat! So if you plan on a run lasting longer than 20 minutes – or are running in high you should drink while running to avoid dehydration.

The amount of water you should intake while running must only be according to your thirst, just the right amount to offset dehydration.

There are a few ways to drink water on the run. If you are lucky, you can run past a water fountain. But many runners find it’s easy to use a hydration waist pack to store water while keeping your hands free. You can also use a handheld water bottle for shorter runs.

Should You Drink Water After Running?

In no less than thirty minutes after you exercise, make sure to consume one to two glasses of water to keep your body replenished. Your body will keep on sweating even after you’re done with the activity which means that you also have to keep on replacing the minerals you keep losing as you perspire.

What To Remember

Water or sports drinks that are a certain mixture of sugar, water, and electrolytes, are the two best beverage to consume before, during, and after running. You have to be mindful of what you consume pre-, mid-, and post-workout.

Some drinks, especially those milk-based energy drinks, would be bad for your body if you consume them before your workout since it takes longer for the body to digest. You wouldn’t want that extra dairy to ruin your metabolism in the middle of a workout.

Meanwhile, some people choose to drink caffeinated drinks to kick-start their day before hitting the gym. This is okay but only if your coffee intake is moderated. Since coffee is a mild diuretic drink, you’ll find that you’d have to urinate more than usual and that may not be ideal during your workout session.

Additionally, too much caffeine may also lead to cardiovascular problems while running, so make sure you don’t drink more than two cups of coffee before a run.

What To Consider

Your water intake is significantly affected by your age, weight, height, duration of your run, and, of course, weather. If you’re a person who sweats a lot, then you might have to consume water at a more frequent rate than an average person.

Same goes if you weigh more since your body exerts more effort in carrying your weight which means that more energy is used and thus your body needs more water to keep it replenished. It is imperative that you pay attention to your body while you exercise to find the perfect amount of water to intake before, while, and after running.


So, should you drink water while running? Absolutely! Running, being an average-level exercise is one of the most practiced activities of all ages of people because of the many health benefits it brings. However, there are a few things that you must consider before going for a run.

Your body, like it or not, works like a machine. If it doesn’t get replenished every once in a while, then you might find it a lot more challenging to stay longer in any activity. The key to maintaining your stamina and endurance for a more extended time is to make sure you consume the right amount of fluid throughout the session.

Christine Adorno
The Wired Runner