I don’t like drinking water. I never have. When I was little I used to call a certain type of stomachache, the kind where liquids slosh around in a too-empty stomach “watery stomach.” I detested those stomachaches as much as their namesake. My issues are two-fold. First, water has no texture or taste except for those times it does and the taste is chemicals or chlorine. Secondly, there are millions of diets and most have zero overlap but they ALL insist the only way to true long-term weight loss is drinking water. Even on diets where I’ve eaten only cabbage or eaten nothing and just drank juice, water has still been one of the hardest parts of the regimen.
I wish I could say the new diet at my boot camp is different, that they are instead proponents of Yoo-Hoo or Sunny Delight or even something like root beer that I could really take or leave.
But no. Of course it’s water. And not just a little. The nutritionist, a meal-prepper by trade, told me when I started that I needed to be drinking a lot of water. When I asked her how much she replied “a dramatic amount.” I laughed because I knew my idea of dramatic was far, far less than hers.
A few weeks ago in our gym’s Facebook forum I learned the standard for what everyone else considers dramatic—a gallon of water a day. A gallon. Don’t people in radio station contests DIE from drinking that much water? Albeit that was in like a few minutes time but still it has been rough. I bought a few one gallon jugs instead of the 16 oz. bottles I usually buy but then I had the problem of refilling them so I had to buy a water filtration system for my faucet. Now I can refill my jugs with ease and I just have one little problem.
I STILL HATE DRINKING WATER. But I am genuinely trying. Here are some of the things I do:
- Get fountain drink cups with just ice in them and drink four of them pretending that everything is as delicious and exciting as when the same cups are filled with soda.
- Put dried orange and lemon slices into my water. Pretend it improves my situation.
- Drink diet soda and pretend it counts because there’s water in soda.
Here is the next thing I’m going to try: diving my water intake over the hours I’m awake which is usually 15 so that works out to 8.5 ounces per hour. So I can either eyeball the amount over an hour or on days when I’m really bored take a shot glass of water every ten minutes. By the time I’m done my days will revolve around little else kind of the way I imagine it must be for someone with a bad drug problem or for Angela on My So-Called Life when she divided her days into two parts: kissing Jordan and not kissing him. I will either be drinking water or not drinking water.
The point is guys, I’m trying. Any water I drink is more than I would be drinking otherwise and firmly qualifies by my standards as dramatic. Some days I even hit a gallon. I can’t say whether I feel better physically as a result or not because I am doing SO many things in conjunction like eating better, working out and taking vitamins and supplements. But I can say I’m feeling accomplished so there’s that. Bottoms up!