Whether you are a casual jogger, or a marathon junky, staying adequately hydrated should be top priority in your training regimen. It has been common knowledge for a very long time that our bodies are made up between 50 – 65% of water; meaning that in order for our bodies to work at maximum efficiency, we need to keep our levels of hydration high at all times. Just like racers fine-tune their engines to reach maximum capacity, all the while keeping them well oiled, cooled to the right temperature, and causing as little wear and tear as possible. A runner has to keep the waters levels up, while not carrying heavy bottles that will weigh them down. Hydration belts are a runner’s jetpack ensuring fuel and constant speed without the bogging down of extra weights in your hands.
Rain or shine, I need to take my daily 45-minute jogging session, whether I am training for a competition or not, whether it’s freezing cold or under the oppressive heat, I need my run to keep me happy. I have tried using all forms of water carriage and bags, all in the effort to find the ultimate ease and comfort during my runs and hydration belts are at the top of my list so far.
I try and keep my long distance Cross Country or trail running to a limit as it often tears away at my muscles and the recovery time keeps me grounded for far too long. However, in any training that I do over 2k at a time, I’ve found a significant difference in my performance when I am fully hydrated than when I try to keep my water levels are bare minimum. When I am fully hydrated, I can perform at a steadier and faster rate, keeping my energy steady while I focus on my stride. Having hydration belts handy keeps my hands free until I need my water hit, as well as combining as a utility belt of sorts. I am not one to take my phone on a jog with me;however,there are certain items that I find essential to carry with me when I am out of the house. My house keys, sometimes my car keys, some cash in case of emergencies, and an energy bar to recover from the run.
Hydration belts and balancing your water intake
When training or during a race
Of course, water is an important aspect of my training, and it should be for you as well. In my hydration belts, there are always 2 bottles of 125ml each. I tend to make a special mixture of 200mls of water and 15grms of a natural energy mixture in powder form. This combination gives me the ultimate boost for when I need that little bit extra, and I have found that it keeps me on a constant and balanced energy surge. The natural energy mix isn’t just for added energy but for extra hydration which actually helps keep me watered-up at the right levels on the longer runs.
Regular day-to-day running
When I am taking my daily 45 minutes without extra training, I am usually on turf, or dirt tracks, with about a mile worth of asphalt. I am telling you which surfaces I run on, so you will get a better idea of how my energy is spent during my running times.
During these runs, I opt to keep my water at 250mls max, with most runs needing approximately 180mls of water. This keeps me adequately hydrated while still keeping me fairly light on my jog. The difference between the plain water to the energy boost mix, isn’t felt during these short runs, so it is better to converse the extra boost for longer runs.
Well there you have it, my humble opinion on how to stay perfectly hydrated during runs, training or races. There are so many new devices and advancements in running technology; I am open to trying them all in order to find the very best fit for me and my run.