Runners - what do you bring on your long runs?

Background - I was mostly biking during the summer, but with less daylight and as the weather turns wetter, I’m going back to running more. Luckily I’m handling the transition OK - I tend to have difficulty increasing my mileage, or running more than about 4x per week. I’m getting my long runs above 10 miles now, with a goal of about 15 miles - actually much farther if I consider hike/run combinations. So, the issue is my kit. Running, it’s just me, shorts, t-shirt, gloves (hardware-store cotton gloves for cool weather), and sometimes a small water bottle in my hand. Hiking I carry a small daypack, but it interferes with my running.

So, what do you all bring on your long runs? Particularly in regards to hydration - I go through a lot of water, and this can be a real problem for me in hot weather. Do you find that a CamelBak is comfortable, and if so, which one? I’ve biked with a loaner CamelBak, but not run with one - thus I don’t know which sizes would work well for the running motion. And I gather that there are other makers of camelback than just CamelBak™.

(Also, I wanted to send out thanks to Scylla for helping to motivate my current increase in running mileage. Good luck in the JFK.)

It depends how far I go. Running 20 miles on Pikes Peak takes a lot longer than 10 on a flat trail. I can go 10 miles with nothing more than shorts and shoes.

Until this year, I used a Camelbak on long runs. I think it is 70 oz. It is a backpack style and good when the weather is unpredictable and I need to carry a lot. I can take my phone in it, in case I find some hurt, and carry all the jackets, gels, money, keys, tp, etc. I need. I’m a bit bigger than most long distance runners, so I can carry more than most.

However, the Camelback can be clunky and hot. This year, I bought a hip belt thing that holds up to 6 small water bottles and a couple of gel packs. I might still take a windbreaker and some gloves, but I have to tie the jacket about my waist and carry the gloves in my hands.

I almost always wear sunglasses, because all of this outdoor stuff is hard on my eyes. I don’t want cataracts or other issues. I’ve started wearing hats to protect against the sun. I’ve long known that as long as I keep my ears warm (with an old ski headband) and some gloves, I can run in almost any weather.

Oh, and I like to take a dog and/or some friends.

I’m training up for my 7th marathon. Lately my long runs have been 18-20 miles. I wear synthetic clothes, particularly RaceReady shorts (that have great pockets). I carry a gel or two, a little plastic wallet with a couple bucks and spare batteries for my GPS reciever, a dog tag ID, an asthma inhaler (rarely use, but when I need it, I really need it). I generally run with a minidisk player.

For hydration, I figure 20 oz/ hour for temps in the 55-75 range. More for hotter, less for cooler. I have 2 options: If I know I can refill, I’ll usually wear a 20 oz. bottle in a belt (w/pocket for my minidisk). If I can’t refill on the run, I have a 72 oz. camelbak. Either works good for me, but I kinda prefer the belt.

Usually, I wear a hat (from Headsweats) and sunglasses. If it’s dark and buggy out, I have clear glasses - I once got an ugly insect in my eye, and don’t ever want to go there again.

Oh, and don’t forget the tape for the nipples (!).

I use a Fuel Belt ( It has a little pouch that holds an energy gel (which I may or may not use, depending on distance) and my car key. Weather is not generally a factor for me in San Diego, so I have my running clothes on, and my fuel belt, and I’m set.

The Fuel Belt has a few different models that have different amounts of bottles. I use the 4 bottle one, and that’s sufficient for me. On super long runs I will need to refill, but generally it’s enough water.

I use blistershield, although I don’t generally have problems there. It prevents chaffing in all sorts of useful places. And you don’t rip any hairs out with it.

Good call on the chafing - I use BodyGlide, but forgot it yesterday, and ouch!!

Also thanks for the suggestions on packs/belts. I have tried a waist-pack/bottle-carrier, but it never rode right for me. So I picked up a CamelBak today and will try it on a longer run tomorrow. It holds 70 oz., but not much else (it’s one up from the basic model), so I’m hoping it will work nicely for longer runs and also cross-over for bike rides.

I’ve thought of trying the RaceReady shorts, and toying with the idea of setting a marathon goal for 2006. Like I said, I’m more of a biker and running has never seemed to be my thing. I think if I don’t try to get all my aerobic training from running, but split it up with biking, that maybe I won’t break down so much.

Thanks again for all your ideas, and good luck with your training goals, too.

I live in a rural area so I plant water and electrolite replacement fluid along the way rather than carry it. Generally I will go out with t-shirt and shorts, maybe a light gortex wind breaker and vasaline, of course, on the chafable points.

That being said a couple of times I have started out for 10 or 20 mile runs in nice warm conditions and ended up being caught in a blizzard (this is Colorado after all).