Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Hydration conclusion: what to wear when and why…

It struck me that this is probably the most useful post of the series especially given that it’s taken 8 months! Yeah pathetic I know! But in my defense the cat ate my homework, I lost my book, the dog was sick and blah blah blah….

So here are my humble options based on my favorite pieces; UD Wasp, UD FastDraw Extreme (Handheld), Mutant and H20:

For run between 1-2 hours

  • Run is supported; gas station etc; UDHH, Mutant or H20
  • If fluid is likely to freeze: UDHH
  • If likely to trip over; UDHH, use bottle to break fall
  • If you prefer two drinks; H20
  • Do you want a gel flask; Mutant
  • Carrying clothing that you might remove after start; gloves hat armwarmers etc; Mutant
  • For races where you want minimal stuff; H20 or UDHH
  • Prefer hands free; H20 or Mutant
  • Prefer waist free; UDHH

For runs 2-4 hours:

  • No 7/11s on the route but maybe a garden hose; Mutant
  • Is fluid likely to freeze; UDHH x 2
  • If likely to face plant; UDHH x 2
  • If you prefer two drinks; UD handheld x 2 or Mutant + UDHH
  • Do you want a gel flask; Mutant
  • Want hands free but race light and don’t mind messing with lids; H20
  • Carrying more clothing for unforeseen changeable weather; Wasp
  • Likely to get chase by small dogs; UDHH x2 drink from one squirt from the other

For runs 4 hours+

  • Run is unsupported in everyway, no gas station, garden hose, nothing; Wasp + UDHH(s) (Optional)
  • Is fluid likely to freeze; UD Handheld x 2 + Wasp half full, decant asap
  • If you prefer two drinks; UD handheld x 2 or Mutant + UDHH or Wasp + UDHH
  • Do you want a gel flask: Wasp or Mutant + UDHH x 2
  • Carrying a lot of gear; map, food, cooker, kitchen sink; Wasp
  • Likely to get chased by anything larger than a small dog; Wasp – bearspray, mace, flare gun, canon!

As you can see the list is pretty endless as are the permutations, some people hate having things in their hands, some don’t like things around their waists and other dislike packs, of course if you plan you route well enough and can run past enough water fountains then you should be good without anything I suppose, Personally I have raced in all but the Mutant, I worn the Wasp for 24 hours plus with no problems and carried handhelds for the same distance, I have refilled my H20 bottles multiple times during a marathon, what I am trying to say is there are no hard and fast rules… the main things to remember are (1) drink and (2) don’t try it on race day!

Of course if you’re likely to fall over when it’s frozen and your being chased by something larger then a dog, well, maybe you should think about going to the gym instead!


  1. Okay, I love the classification under Runs 2-4 hrs. "If likely to trip over; UDHH x 2" =) This is no joke! I hate carrying hand helds but have continued to do it for this one reason.

  2. I'm just picturing you going through all these scenarios. Very impressive list here. I need to remember the breaking fall with UDHH bit. Important!


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