When you first start your running journey, you are excited to get out on the road! Once you catch that running bug, your mileage becomes longer and longer. Suddenly just grabbing your running shoes isn’t quite enough, as you need to prepare for hours on the road. For those training for the longer runDisney distances, here’s a look at ideas on what to carry during a long run!
Water/Hydration – This is BY FAR the most important! When running for a long period of time, you need to make sure you stay hydrated – no matter if it is cold, sunny, hot, rainy or anything in between. Whether you bring your own hydration or stash it along the route, make sure you have enough for the whole run. The rule of thumb is approximately 4 oz every 2 miles, however you may find you need more based on the weather conditions. If it is particularly hot or humid, an electrolyte drink may be a better idea.
Fuel – Once the double digits begin, you may find that your pre-race food isn’t enough. That means finding out what to take along to snack on during your run. This truly is trial and error, as what works for one runner may not work for another. Great options are gels, chews or even dried fruit.
The key is to fuel before you’re hungry, which can be hard to figure out! If you aren’t sure, try fueling every 30-45 minutes. If you feel you need an extra boost, it doesn’t hurt to fuel a little more. Or if you feel like your stomach is too full, fuel a little less. If you do take chews or gels, be sure to chase them down with water!
Identification/Phone – Unfortunately, you never know what may happen on a run. We HIGHLY recommend Road ID bracelets. The bracelet includes important information about yourself, as well as who to contact if something should happen. There is also an app for your phone that will include those important numbers on the lock screen. And yes, we also recommend running with your phone! During a long run, you have the potential to be miles away from home or your vehicle. With your phone, you can call someone if you roll an ankle, don’t feel well, etc. Always remember – SAFETY FIRST!
Miscellaneous – While the above are the most important, there may be a few other items you want to bring along on your long run. A house key (if you are running near your home), cash (in case you need to stop for more hydration or fuel), bandaids, tissue, etc. You want to make sure you have anything you may need, but at the same time – you don’t want to feel like a pack mule! Try to keep the extra items to a minimum, if possible.
How do you carry all these items? There are many options! A popular option among runners is a running belt. There are MANY varieties, so head to your local running store or race expo. Some fit higher or tighter than others, some include water bottles, etc., so you need to find the right fit for you. Another option is a handheld water bottle with a pocket. It may take a little trial and error, eventually finding the option that works best for you!
Throughout these blog posts, we will cover all aspects of training from our own personal experience. Please note that we are not medical doctors, personal trainers, registered dietitians or in any way qualified to give individualized recommendations. If you have something you would like us to address, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org!