With the hotter temps Missoula has felt recently, I've been chugging water like crazy.

This week I'm flushing out my body to help drop excess water weight for my powerlifting competition on Saturday. What that basically means is I drink a lot of water starting on Monday and cut back .5 gallons each day after. With the whopping 1.5 gallons I had to drink on Monday, it got me wondering how much water we are supposed to drink per day...

As a kid, I remember hearing that you're supposed to drink eight 8-oz glasses of water per day. True? Well, according to the Mayo Clinic, kind of.

The Institute of Medicine determined that an adequate intake (AI) for men is roughly about 13 cups (3 liters) of total beverages a day. The AI for women is about 9 cups (2.2 liters) of total beverages a day.

Eight 8-oz glasses of water isn't too far off from 2.2 liters (1.9L); I think it's just easier to remember. To hit that recommended mark, you don't have to chug three liters of water, although you may think that's the best option. I suppose it could be. But Mayo also says that 20 percent of your water intake comes from food alone.

Many fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon and spinach, are 90 percent or more water by weight. In addition, beverages such as milk and juice are composed mostly of water. Even beer, wine and caffeinated beverages — such as coffee, tea or soda — can contribute, but these should not be a major portion of your daily total fluid intake. Water is still your best bet because it's calorie-free, inexpensive and readily available.

With the hot temperatures rolling in for our Missoula summer, don't forget to stay hydrated!