This is topic about hydration beeminding strategies, tips and technology.
I have a problem with staying hydrated, drinking water in regular intervals. In fact, I sometimes spend my days drinking only coffee
I’m thinking about starting small with having a goal of 1 glass of water per day.
I bought a 2 litres water bottle with a measure, but I forget to take it with me or fill it in the morning. Maybe I should beemind filling it each morning?
This project could be also technology driven. I imagine I could record everything that happens in my kitchen and detect my face and a glass of water. Or sync bottle water level with iPhone?
I’m very open to hear all sorts of feedback and stories from you.
There are smart water bottles that light an LED when you are supposed to drink. There are also some that have Bluetooth and connect to an app on the phone, so it seems like there is some potential for automated goals here. (I cannot say how well these bottles work as I have never used them myself.)
As for me, I just… naturally drink a lot of water because I like it.
Is there anything you can do to make drinking water more enjoyable? Get a huge bag of ice cubes (super cheap) and drink water with ice? From a fancy whisky glass? Water on the rocks? That’s what probably would’ve worked for me.
I have a water goal that tracks water by weight drunk (or volume, it’s the same thing for water).
I measured the capacity of all of the cups I commonly used so that I don’t need to weigh water each time I drink some.
I keep the list of cup descriptions and weights in a list in a Tasker scene and configured it so that one tap on a list item will submit that much water to my Beeminder goal.
I have a couple of entries in my morning routine to remind me to drink water at those points.
In the past I’ve also had reminders later in the day but they were more annoying than useful; I’m in the habit of drinking enough now so I usually don’t need them.
I count tea and coffee towards my water consumption. It used to be thought that they should not count towards water consumption because they are diuretics, but I did a web search several months back and found a high proportion of articles saying that the diuretic effect is not enough to offset the hydration effect.
I also count milk but I submit only 95% of the weight because some of the weight is milk solids (that calculation is configured in Tasker too so I don’t need to think about it). I obtained the 95% figure by pulling it straight out of the air because it “felt” about right.
I do not count alcohol. I hardly ever drink soft drinks or fruit juice so I don’t have rule about them. I’ve probably counted them in the past if I felt like it but again with a small reduction in the weight recorded.
I think logminders are correct and this could indeed help me. It would be interesting for me to compare beeminder vs public accountability systems (are there some? I know communities like https://wip.co/ etc). To me, beeminder is an external motivation system - it’s “them” who charge my credit card whenever I fail. It seems to me that if you don’t know what to beemind, beeminder might be not for you. “Too early for beeminder”. This is probably the case with logminders and my hydration issues.
Yep, I used to track each glass of water and coffee and synced it with Apple Health and Beeminder, but it’s a lot of overhead. I would like it to be very transparent. Almost all of my goals are synced automatically and I just check status on the widget or BUI app.
The alternative thing to track would be your hydration level. Or non-dehydration level if you want Do less goal. Imagine a device that could read your hydration level from your pee (it’s colour?) or your saliva in a second (Theranos mode). I did no googling to learn if it’s possible. Preferably it would scan my fingerprint to know if it’s dry or just fine.
But how much water do you all drink?
Do you think it’s enough to take two glasses aka 500 ml in one shot in the morning and I’m done? May I have your feedback in a structured way? Here’s the form: https://forms.gle/jkhK5nUVFvTUMkJS8
I’ll share the results once we collect some responses.
Problem here is that the feedback loop is very loooong and boring. I would have to spend 2 months or so to notice if my fingers and elbows are harsh and dry (this is how I know I’m dehydrated currently).
My target is just about a gallon a day. I used to beemind drinking directly, but that resulted in me chugging my daily quota right before my deadline, which is entirely counter-productive, since it’s very unpleasant and just goes straight through.
Now I have one large water bottle that holds my whole daily quota, and instead of beeminding drinking it, I beemind filling it. So, for example, if I have a water beemergency and my bottle is still 25% full, I’ll still fill it up and give myself a datapoint of 1, since the goal is for the purpose of ensuring I always have my water within reach, and not forcing myself to drink it.
I have a lot of trouble with hydration, because I don’t actually know when I’m thirsty*. I’ve tried beeminding drinking more (including with a smart bottle that flashed to remind me to drink: Hidrate Spark bottles can integrate with Fitbit and automatically report to Beeminder), but I had two problems: 1) drinking so much made my acid reflux worse**, and 2) I really hate it.
So I’m trying instead to beemind habits like when I start drinking in a day, and always ensuring I have a drink ready. We’ll see how it goes…
* I know that whenever I say this somebody feels the need to tell me that everyone knows when they’re thirsty and it must mean I’m not really thirsty. I assure you that I don’t know, that I need more fluids than I’d take in of my own accord, and that it has caused medical problems! ** Not a commonly known issue, but it appears to be what happens for me. I don’t know if ramping up the habit slowly might help here. Since I’m on the waiting list to see a gastroenterologist, I’ll discuss it with them and am not looking for advice at this time.
As an aside, 95% is pretty good, but tweaking down to 90% might be slightly more accurate. Which, like, I normally wouldn’t bother mentioning this, but since it’d be a one-line tweak in Tasker, might be worth it. That’s the number I use when thinking about hydration for baking. This harvard nutritionsource page says whole cow’s milk is about 87% water, and of course slightly more of any of the lower-fat milks will be water.
I love the idea of beeminding having water available rather than, stictly speaking, drinking water. I’m not totally sure I want to track it just yet, but it has motivated me to go get my water bottle from the other room and fill it up!
This will be beenary, 4/7 days a week. I will also add an iOS widget that will display information if it was done today (like I do for Anki, Duolingo and Memrise, along with the urgency load). Deadline will be 10 AM, so it has to be done in the morning.
Then I will create a one-tap shortcut to create a datapoint and add Health that I did water, for sanity I’ll assume it’s 3/4 of the bottle or so. This will get me some graphs and usage patterns as a side effect.
I’ll take feedback from April to make it less boring, I’ll add lemon, ice and mint from time to time.
Result will be net positive, because I do nothing right now, doing something will help. The only easy alternative I see is setting up one or two reminders to start small and commit to drink 500ml each time. I could have both of goals, but let’s see what “refills” goal brings in 3 weeks.
I’m thinking also about something like “morning-routine” goal, consisting of 3-4 key things that have to happen, one of them being bottle refill.
Just wanted to add that I have a Beeminder goal that syncs with iOS health, and I think of it more as a “baseline”. I don’t want to pressure myself into feeling bad about my health, but I do need to make sure I’m getting a minimum of water each day.
I log when I pour a new drink and just estimate how much each cup is. I figure if I estimate each time, the average error evens out consistently. I use the app Waterminder (not affiliated with Beeminder) and it has a watch app too and some nice complications / widgets for both. It also has some nice “coaching” and alert features like calculating how much water you should drink by certain times of the day. I think it was 3 or 5 bucks.
But I love having it sync to Beeminder for both the standard monetary motivation and the long term simple tracking.