How much water should I drink after exercise?

How much water should I drink after exercise?

Drink 20-24 ounces of water for every pound you lost during exercise.

As a general guideline, drink 20 oz. – 24 oz. of water for every 1 lb of body weight you lose during exercise.  Drink this water within 2 hours of completing your exercise.


John weighed 200 lbs before exercise.
John weighed 198 lbs after exercise.
He lost 2 lbs during exercise.

John will want to drink 40 oz. – 48 oz. of water within 2 hours of exercise.

Here’s the math:

2 lbs x 20 oz. = 40 oz.
2 lbs x 24 oz. = 48 oz.

If you lose weight after exercise, it does not mean you’ve lost fat. It means you’ve lost water weight and need to replace the water you’ve lost.

Weigh yourself naked (if possible) because clothes drenched with sweat after exercise can add weight to the scale.

ACSM Position Stand: Exercise and Fluid Replacement
Beth Stover and Bob Murray. Drink Up! The Science of Hydration. ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal. March/April 2007

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