My New Years resolution was simple: Drink more water.
By the end of 2009, I had already committed myself to running two marathons in 2010, the Trail Marathon and the Detroit Marathon. I also committed o being the best father I can and to being more organized and, in general, on top of things. (That last goal has been perennial, with mixed results.) Beyond those lofty ambitions, I reasoned that any other goals for this year should be simple with a relatively high yield, benefit-wise.
Water’s about as elemental as it gets. Hydration’s important, whether training for distance running or sitting on the couch of doom.
My friends know me for my love of coffee (hence the napkin-stained theme of this blog). I defend the habit with science that shows coffee doesn’t dehydrate and the fact that my go-to style is strong and black, so daily consumption amounts to almost no calories — not that I worry. It’s the at-least-it’s-not-a-Frappuccino argument. And it’s a valid one. Yet, I know deep down in my Buddha-mind that if coffee and water were both streams leading to enlightenment, water would carry me there quicker. Which brings me to beer, my other great liquid love. Drunken Master aside, beer isn’t carrying anyone to enlightenment. Still, beer, like any alcoholic beverage, dehydrates the drinker. Not good. Particularly during marathon training.
Regardless of my passion for both, drinking either effectively comes with the opportunity cost of not drinking water. That’s not to say I plan to give up either. I don’t. But, as I commit to drink more water, the others get crowded out a bit. That’s the plan.
Besides having other preferred beverages, water doesn’t do much for me taste-wise. When I drink water, it’s usually fizzy or flavored or both. I can’t exclude fizzy water from the resolution; really, I embrace any liquid that gets me there. But I also need to learn to love plain ol’ agua. That ain’t easy for me, but I try.
How have I set out to fulfill this resolution? I start the day with coffee, which isn’t water, but gets me conscious. I follow my morning joe with at least 16 oz of water. Later, when I get to work, I drink another 16 oz before I allow myself to drink more coffee. That 32 oz is probably 20-some more ounces than I would fit in before I made this goal. And Mrs. Blocletters, bless her, just got me a fancy stainless-steel water bottle. I think it holds 20 oz, so that’ll help.
So far, I give myself a B-. I’ve forgotten the second 16-oz glass a few times, but overall, I’m doing swimmingly. Here’s hoping I can keep it up.