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Water, water everywhere

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Water is a key ingredient in all peoples' diets. More importantly, water is an essential part of an athlete's training, competition, rest and recovery diet.

It is difficult to believe that many people, wether they are training or not, consume enough water.

Water is found as an ingredient in most things we drink and can easily be obtained in North America through numerous sources. Bottled water, water from the kitchen or bathroom tap, water in coffee, soft drinks, juices and other beverages, at restaraunts, and from fountains at school, work, the mall or the gym are some of the major sources of water in today's world.

The effects of not drinking enough water(dehydration) range from mild, including lack of concentration, reduced athletic performance, to the severe; hospitalization, even death.

As adults, our bodies are 70% water. Thirst becomes apparent when we have lost only 1% of this total. While most things we eat and drink contain water, beverages like soda pop, tea, and coffee contain caffeine. Acting as a mild diuretic, caffeinated beverages can prevent water from reaching important parts of the body, thus water is best consumed in a non-caffeinated form. Source: www.allaboutwater.org

So where does Calgary's water come from?

The water supply in Calgary comes from the fresh water runoff of the Rocky Mountains. The Elbow River feeds the Glenmore Resevoir in the South of the city and the Bearspaw Dam in the city's North is fed by the larger Bow River.

According to the City of Calgary, the water that flows through our taps is tested for about 150 parameters more than 100 000 times a year. Strict testing helps lead to the safe supply of drinking water that we enjoy here in Calgary like most other places in North America.

For more information about how our drinking water is treated, where it originates from, and how Calgary's water supply resevoir plays a major role in Alberta flood prevention, visit www.calgary.ca/UEP/Water/ .

The next article will deal with staying properly hydrated. As athletes, how do we ensure to drink an adequate amount of water when we are training or competing?

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