the date is set: Sunday, May 15, 2011

race: Toronto Goodlife Fitness Half-Marathon

goal: 1 hour, 58 minutes

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Lesson in Hydration Equipment

Motivation is on the rise! As is my distance, yet unfortunately, I cannot say the same for my speed. I’m still lagging, and quite disappointed about my lack of “oomph” (for lack of a better term) throughout my runs. Today, however, helped to increase my personal motivation meter.

The first day of March brought with it sunshine, warmer temperatures and a burst of springtime pep. I had a fantastic 45 minute run and felt great afterwards. I’ve switched over to my Mom’s prescribed training schedule, which focuses more heavily on spinning and weights, as opposed to strictly running.

With today’s newfound enthusiasm, I dragged my Dad into the Running Room for a proper analysis of what I will call, “the water bottle situation.” Here’s a little secret that I’m not too proud of: I’ve ran and trained for two half-marathons without purchasing a proper way to stay hydrated. Of course I have my water bottle while at the gym, or before and after my runs, but nothing for the entirety of a long, outdoor run. I’ve come to the realization that this is simply, unhealthy.

The Fuel Belt.
Ready to change this fact, I asked the knowledgeable Running Room Sales Associate for the low-down on water bottle selection. Her recommendation? The fuel-belt. Basically, it’s a Velcro belt with mini water bottles spread evenly across your waistline. Even distribution of the bottles is supposed to alleviate any discomfort, and, according to the Sales Associate, you barely even know you are wearing it!

The Fanny Pack.
Now, I have to be honest: it reminds me of a fanny pack. And, if there is one fashion faux pas that I cannot stand--it is a fanny pack. Images of a loud-printed canvas frontal pack trekking around amusement parks and carnivals, in the heat of summer, enter my mind. I realize that this is an unfair generalization and comparison, but I can’t help it: the fuel belt screams “FANNY PACK” in my mind.

I choose to keep this comparison to myself, as the Sales Associate continues. She proceeds to show me a full-size water bottle holder. Still a belt with a bottle, but it looks more like a regular belt with a water bottle secured on the small of your back. I try it on and immediately can tell that I will not be comfortable with a water bottle hanging off my back as I run. My only other option is a hand-held water bottle holder. I rule this option out, as I already carry my iPod, and that is just plenty.

So, as unfortunate as it is…it looks as if the fanny pack’s sister, the fuel belt, is the route to go. However, I guarantee that I will retract my words of disdain for the fuel belt once I see the benefits of proper hydration. 

Happy Running!


  1. This was a great idea for a post Brit. I realzed how much I did not drink water in the average day to day setting and have changed that drastically. However, your post made me notice how much I have been lacking in staying hydrated during workouts as well, especially while running. These little contraptions are a great way to battle this, I'm going to go and check it out!

  2. Great post Britt. How much water would you recommend someone drink to remain hydrated while running?

  3. these are great ideas, I always find it awkward running with a bottle in my hands

  4. your bring up a great point. I'm at 14K in my training and have yet to bring water with me! I have figured out how to eat on the go...but the water thing...I'm just not ready for the 'belt'!
    Love to see a review once you've tested it out.

  5. I really liked this post, and it actually reminded me of the gear I used to wear in the army. I obviously wore gear that was various shades of green not rainbow. I might consider sending this information to a friend of mine who is a logistics officer in charge of supplying equipment to our troops. I think a rainbow fanny pack might actually frighten the Taliban to the point where we would no longer need bullets.

  6. Thanks for your comments!!

    Jessica - that's a great question, and to be honest, I'm not sure there is a set answer. I think it probably depends on the person. For me, drinking small amounts of water throughout a run is much better than trying to drink half a bottle during a break. But, everyone is different!

    Nathan - you're hilarious! I couldn't imagine the response from troops if they were to receive rainbow coloured fanny packs on duty!