From under-training to over-sleeping, we all have some scary images of race day gone wrong.
With temperatures starting to rise across the country, the need to stay hydrated before, during and after running becomes increasingly more important. Here are some ideas to ensure you have water readily available during your training runs:
- Plan your route around water stops. If you are lucky enough to live close to a city or neighborhood park, you may have access to water fountains. When I lived in NYC, long runs in Central Park were a breeze. There are fountains located sporadically around the park, making it too easy to just dart over for a sip of water when I felt I needed one. If water fountains are not an option, you can plan your route around homes of family/friends. Last summer, I made countless stops to my sister’s house (yard) and used her water hose to cool down.
- Head to the track. Probably not the most ideal location for a longer run, but you can easily make pit stops as often as necessary when you are doing laps around the track.
- Stash water bottles along route before you run. If you have a certain route you want to run but there is no water along the way, you can drive the course right before you run to hide a few water bottles. Just remember to retrieve them when you are finished!
- Carry it with you. This is probably the most common way to drink on the run. But the problem most runners have is finding a container that’s comfortable for them. Here are a few options:
- Handheld: If you aren’t familiar with these bottles, they are more comfortable and secure than just a regular water bottle. Most are shaped to fit into the palm of your hand and come with a Velcro strap so you can keep your hand unclenched as you run.
- Hydration Belt: Similar to a fuel belt, these bottles (usually two or four) hang on a belt around your waist. Typically, each bottle holds between 6-10 oz of water each
- Camelbak/Vest: Great option if you want to keep your hands free (especially important for trail runners). The water is kept either on your back or in water bottles on your vest.
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- Keep Water by your home. This is the method I use the most. I usually leave a water bottle on the hood of my car (I live on a dead end block so we don’t get much traffic) and then do short loops in my neighborhood with quick pit stops. If the sun is really strong or it’s a warm day, consider finding some shade for the water bottle.
- Have a moving aid station. My husband did this for me once (many years ago before we had children!) and it was the most amazing way to run. He rode his bike and would check on me every 5-10 minutes to see if I needed water or fuel. It was a breeze to reach over, grab the water bottle, take a sip and hand it back.
How do you ensure you get water during summer running? Tweet @nycrunningmama with your tips!