I received a question about hydration/water on long runs. First, let me say that receiving questions makes me feel like a REAL blogger and that makes me happy. :)
I do carry water on pretty much any run that I do. I'm sure that this is part mental, but I just like the idea of having it if I need it, even if it's only 3 miles.
I use a Nathan 22-ounce handheld bottle. I will say, it did take some time getting used to it, and I will complain that sometimes my fingers start to fall asleep, but it supplies me with quite a bit of water or gatorade. It has a little pouch that can carry my key fob, chomps, or Gu's which is nice.
For instance, yesterday's 12 miler was humid and I started with a full bottle of water with NUUN. I have liked these - they only have 8 calories, no sugar, but still have the electrolytes that you need. In typing this, I realize that I am diluting mine a bit in using a 22-ounce bottle since it comes with a 16-ounce. I will need to alter that!
So, at the 8 mile mark, I was pretty much out of water, so one of my running buddies filled up my bottle with water and I was empty again after my last 4 miles. Wow! We already know that we will be placing extra water along our routes. Training in the south, in the summer ... you just have to. My clothes were literally soaked.
Other good options for hydration would be the Nathan waist pack. I have not been a fan of waist packs in the past, but I have known runners who really liked this hands-free option. FuelBelt also makes several options - waist & handheld. I would recommend trying out some options - maybe borrow one if you can to find out what works for you. Remember that it may take some getting used to, but using one of these kinds of packs may be better than dropping water along the route.
The good thing is on race day, you will likely have water or a sportsdrink along the course, so I usually will alternate between grabbing a cup, and drinking mine to help conserve what I am carrying so I don't have to refill.
Does anyone else have any products that they love?