Skip to Content
Most people lose as much as
1 qt (1 L) to
2 qt (2 L) of fluid during 1
hour of exercise. When you are not drinking enough fluids, your muscles get
tired quickly, and you may have leg cramps while walking or running.
If you are an athlete,
you can lose as much as
3 qt (3 L) of fluid an hour
during an intense workout. Fluid loss in endurance activities such as distance
running, cycling, strenuous hiking, or cross-country skiing can be severe.
These types of activities can quickly lead to
In endurance athletes,
dehydration can cause symptoms, called post-extreme
endurance syndrome (PEES). Symptoms of PEES include decreased body temperature,
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, muscle cramps, and an
inability to drink fluids.
Distance runners and other endurance
athletes are not the only ones to have problems with dehydration. Football,
basketball, and hockey players all may lose large amounts of fluid during a
game. High school and college wrestlers often decrease their fluid intake and
promote excessive sweating before a match in order to "make weight."
To protect yourself from dehydration:
It is important to protect yourself from dehydration in
extremely hot or dry weather and at high elevations. Exercise early in the day
or later in the evening when it is cooler.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerH. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Current as ofMay 27, 2016
Current as of:
May 27, 2016
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
© Copyright 2016 Rush-Copley Medical Center • 2000 Ogden Avenue; Aurora, IL 60504
Main: 630-978-6200 • Physician Referral & Information: 630-978-6700 or 866-4COPLEY (866-426-7539)