Let’s talk about hydration... 💦
Something that for most people doesn’t become an issue until they go beyond the normal 6 miles they do a couple times a week.
I’ve tried hand bottles and I’m not a fan. I have to keep switching arms and although you don’t actually have to grip it, 300-500ml of water gets uncomfortable.
I like to keep my hands free as it helps with balance and form, especially on the trails.
Anything 6 miles plus...I wear a hydration pack.
So, my low down on hydration packs. There are two types. Ones with a bladder and those with soft/hard flasks in the front. Different sizes, little race vests just to carry essentials and then way up to self supported multi day events where you have to carry your own kit and food for 5-6 days.
Let’s start with the effects of dehydration. Consider this, if you lose just 1% water in body weight your performance drops by 2%. That’s a lot and just to start some finish the marathon over 6% down!
Water is key in keeping your blood, which contains much needed oxygen and sodium, flowing quickly and easily to your heart, lungs and muscles... as well as helping every body part needed to run well function at its peak.
However, when you become dehydrated, consequently your blood becomes thicker, which makes your heart work harder to pump blood to the body parts that need it’s fuel. Drinking liquid regularly whilst running will then offset your liquid loss through sweating and keep everything in balance and working order.
How much should you drink...?
We are all different. On average, people lose 800-1200ml an hour via sweating and breathing. A rule of thumb is drink to thirst. However, when it’s really cold people don’t tend to drink as much. I personally aim for 500ml an hour.
At Bay Running Shop we have a selection of hydration packs. Some with a bladder and some with bottles. The benefit of having a bladder is that you can carry up to 2l of fluid which can see you through a marathon however, you can’t keep a check on how much you are drinking and you can only have one type of drink which can often slosh around.
The next option is soft flasks. They are usually 500ml each so you can carry a litre. The benefit is that you know exactly how much you have drank and you can carry two different types of fluid, like a carb and electrolyte drink or water in one. The negative is that you can only carry a litre, so you need to plan your route to involve picking a bottle up.
The other benefit to having a well fitted pack is that you hardly know it’s there. They usually have a pocket designed to carry your phone, a back pocket to carry another layer or light jacket and other pockets to carry keys, nutrition etc
Our hydration packs start at £31.98 and we have something for everyone.
What are your hydration tips?