Healthy Living

How to carry water and other gear without creating strain

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There are few problems more perplexing than how to stay hydrated during a run. We’ve all been there: dumping water down our throats all day in preparation for your big 3-mile jog or guzzling H2O minutes before til the belly bloat makes every step feel like you’re treading water.

As we head into summer, the need to be hydrated is even more important. Hydration—and dehydration—can affect running performance, your health, and even how you feel on a light jog.

The obvious solution is to have water with you so you can take a few sips here and there, but how in the heck are you supposed to comfortably carry a water bottle while you’re pounding pavement? Not only is it awkward to hold without it slipping from your grasp, but it also creates a distraction when you need to be focusing on the run.

For runs less than 30 minutes:

Wear a backpack. Not only is this a convenient way of carrying your water bottle since it’s on your back, it won’t encumber your run and you can put other items inside as well, like a towel and first aid kit.

For runs between 30-60 minutes:

Have your route run past your house. If you’re running for an hour, plan the first leg so that you circle back to your house halfway through. That way you can have a drink waiting for you on your front step for a quick hydration break.

For runs over an hour:

Plan your route along public water fountains. This way you’ll know exactly when that sweet, sweet H2O is coming and it can provide extra motivation to push yourself to that location.

Other tips:

Purchase a carrier. Several fun pieces of equipment exist that allow you to clip a water bottle onto a belt, your arm, or even your back. Some examples can be found by going here: http://www.runnersworld.com/trail-running-gear/how-to-carry-water-on-a-run

Pack some cash. A long run is great when you’re passing through a town or city. Not only is it great site seeing and people watching to keep the run interesting, you’ll also be passing some little cafes and fast food restaurants where you can purchase a water bottle. Stuff a few dollars in your shoe and grab yourself a bottle.