website Skip to content

6 Things You Should Pack In Your Running Hydration Vest

6 Things You Should Pack In Your Running Hydration Vest

I've been doing a lot more volume running lately. Why? Well, I'm training for a 100k ultramarathon later this year.

Okay, I'm still a long way off running 100km, but what it means is I've been using my Runly R700 Hydration Vest a lot more in training.

If you've never used a hydration vest before, there's a good chance it will take you three, four, five runs before you actually get used to it.

There's no denying, it's different. You're not used to carrying anything around your chest. Then boom, all of a sudden you're carrying a couple litres of water and you've got this thing strapped to your body.

But once you get used to it, you'll feel naked running without it.

Naturally, I speak to a lot of runners. Many of them tell me the same thing - it doesn't matter if they're running 5km or 50km - they all wear their hydration vest.

The great thing about most hydration vests, is that you can customise it to suit your particular run.

If you're running 5km, your needs are very different to a 50km run.

There's only so much you're going to need to drink on a 5km run. Realistically, you might only have a few sips of water. So you certainly don't need to be carrying 3L of water on your back!

Alternatively, if you're heading out for a big long run, you're going to want to be prepared.

Let's jump into the six things you're going to want to pack into your hydration vest when running:

1. Water

It goes without saying. Hydration = water.

But the question is, how much do you need? That is a golden question and something we have tried to answer in another blog post here.

For short runs, you're not going to need a lot of water. It's worth carrying a little bit more than you think you might need, because you never know, but there's no need to bring 3L on a 5km run.

For example, in my R700 Hydration Vest there are two soft bottles for the front of the vest with a 450ml capacity (900ml), and a 2L water bladder in the back.

It would be a waste to fill everything up and carry 2.9L for a 5-10km run. I'd be lucky to even make a dent in that!

What you might consider doing instead is taking out the water bladder, or both of the flasks to lighten your load. Around 1L of water would be more than enough for a short run.

Now, if I'm heading out for a long slow 2-3 hour run, that's a different story.

I'd be inclined to pack the whole 2.9L and sip at it slowly. You're going to be out there for a while so you want to be prepared.

2. Your Phone

Alright, aside from taking beautiful pictures and videos of the sunrise on the water and uploading it to the 'gram, your phone is a safety measure.

I know, we're glued to our phones.

But I do believe it's important to carry our phones when running because it acts as a safety tool.

First of all, if you head out and for whatever reason you need to make the 'call of shame' for someone to come pick you up, you have the means to do it.

Don't worry, I've been there a few times.

I've set off on an ambitious long run after a big day of work and you just hit the wall. You can't do it. Instead of making the long walk home, you can call a loved one to collect you.

Failing that, you can get also get yourself an Uber home.

We've all been there. It's part of the fun (or not so fun) of running.

Secondly, in case of emergency you've got the means to call emergency services.

If something happens on your run, or you encounter someone else who needs help you've got your phone there to call for help.

Sure, the chances of this are slim. But I know that I'd rather have my phone than not in that scenario. The key thing here is being prepared, and being in control which makes for a safer run and a more enjoyable experience.

3. Energy Gels

As I mentioned before, sometimes you take off for a run and you just the hit the wall sooner than you would've hoped.

An energy gel is perfect for that little extra boost you need to get through your run.

It can be used as both a planned intake, or a little emergency boost. But either way having something in your pack for a little extra boost can go a long way.

If you're heading out for a longer run, bring a few energy gels, or lollies, and make sure to munch on something at predetermined intervals.

For example, if you're heading out for a 20km run, perhaps you might have a hit of energy at both the 10km and 15km mark to get you through.

4. Keys

I mean, I don't think I even need to explain this one.

If you leave the house, there's a good chance you need your keys to get back in! Before I started using a running vest the last thing I used to say to my partner was 'Will you be home in 1 hour?'.

The reality is that stuff happens, someone else won't always be home. Pack a set of your keys in your hydration vest. A good vest will have plenty of room to store your house keys, or car keys, and you won't even notice that they're there.

5. Medication

The reason I started Runly was because I needed to carry my medication while running - both my asthma puffer and my Epipen.

So for me, it's imperative that I take these along with me. Luckily, my R700 running vest has so much room to easily store these items. I could probably store ten of them and not even notice.

But for you, maybe it's something else. Perhaps it's some regular medication you need or a 'just in case' device.

For everyone else, it's very handy to carry some basic medication like a couple of Panadol, maybe some anti-inflammatory tablets or some antihistamine if you're prone to allergies.

6. Clothing Layers

Last, but absolutely not least.

Depending on the time of year you're running, you're going to want to bring a layer just in case.

I've been caught out a number of times not doing this. Mind you, it's not because I didn't have the space to carry it, it's because I thought 'she'll be right'.

The less serious example of this is going for a long slow run and thinking that you'll warm up as you go. That makes sense, right?

Well, if you haven't done a lot of long slow running before, you might not understand how your body reacts to it from a temperature perspective.

One of my first long slow runs I remember taking off in shorts and t-shirt in winter time thinking that I'll be hot as I'll be running a long way.

I was freezing.

As I was trying to keep my heart rate under 150, my body temperature did not rise significantly and there I was pounding the trails with goosebumps on my arms. Lesson learnt.

The other example which is a bit more serious is if you're considering doing some elevation running - especially on mountain trails, you need to prepare for some changes in conditions.

It can get significantly colder the higher you go and on mountains the temperature can change really quickly.

Make sure you take a windbreaker at the very least and shove it into your hydration vest - you'll be extremely thankful when it comes time to needing it!

I hope this article has helped you consider the key things you might need in your hydration vest when taking off for a run. Consider the distance you'll be running, how much water you need and what you might need in case of emergency.

Of course, there are other things you might need to consider taking depending on the run, such as a first aid kit, a survival whistle or some extra snacks.

Stay safe out there and run well!

Previous     Next

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published