How to stay hydrated on a longer trail run

Back in my youth, I would just run until I dehydrated.  This seemed to work and meant I didn’t have to carry anything. It also meant a couple of close calls with narrowing vision and raging thirst.

I have been trying to figure out the best way to carry enough food and water to keep me going on a hot days now that I am a bit more respectuful of my body.  I have a few hydration packs, but mine are for day hikes and so can be a bit cumbersome for running.  So I started to ask around to see what other people use.

In the end it really seems to be a matter of what feels best and how much money you want to spend. Being a cheap bastard who had never tried a waist belt, I went with a waist belt with a single bottle and a zip pocket.

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I like it! The bottle doesn’t move and I really don’t even notice it. The issue I had was that in 90+ degrees heat if you are running over 10 miles that one bottle was not enough. In cooler weather or places where a re-fill is possible, this may be a better choice.

Other thoughts, this would work well for climbing scrambles since it keeps the weight over your center of gravity.  If you have a long hike in to reach the climb, it may be worth carrying this in your day pack and then stashing the pack to run up the climb.

When I have more budget again, I will try a true running pack.  In reality, I want to get back to long happy trail runs again, so I hope that a pack will provide the gear room and water capacity to get me where I am going.  For now, I will just try to adjust my old hydration pack to see how that works.

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