One year of tracking how much I drink

One year ago I started using a water tracking app because my mind was convinced that I was drinking far less than the recommended 2-3 liters per day and that I was missing out on physical and mental performance.

My logged water intake from 2023 to 2024.
My logged water intake from 2023 to 2024.

One year later, I’ve finished the experiment and I’ve uninstalled the app because:

  • It’s nudged me to listen less to my body.
  • Trying to hit my 2-3 liters daily goal has made me go to the bathroom so often it felt wrong.
  • I’ve regularly bloated which drained energy and decreased mental performance.

Using an app has helped me become more mindful about how much I drink, but that’s of l felt bloated or felt like I was stressing my kidneys and wasting water

When I’ve stack to simply drinking when I was thirsty, when my urine didn’t look transparent, or when I was about to do strenuous exercise, I’ve not felt like I was wasting water, stressing my kidneys, and constantly peeing.

2-3 liters may be a good baseline but:

  • I live in a cold place in the mountains and I regularly feel cold.
  • I follow a vegan diet and I eat a lot of veggies which have more water than denser foods.
  • I try to eat unprocessed foods, which may cause less waste, and I drink hot water, which according to Ayurveda removes waste more effectively.
  • I have a slim constitution and my body seems to retain less water than people around me.

Lessons learned:

  • Don’t reinvent the wheel: if it’s got to do with the body, assume nature was there first.
  • Set tighter deadlines for experiments: Remember opportunity cost and The Lean Startup.
  • Don’t outsource what you value: body awareness, prioritization, or thinking.

If you want to experiment with a water tracking app yourself I recommend the one I used, WaterLlama: best UX and feature set.