First of all, if you’ve made it here from the Team #runDisney FB page then WELCOME and thanks for stopping by!  I think these group topic blog posts will be a lot of fun and a great way for us to share information and experiences as we train for our upcoming runDisney events!

I love checking out what other runners are wearing and using both at races and on training runs, so I thought it would be fun to write about what I’m using and hopefully get some recommendations on new things to try from other runners!

Yesterday I wrote about what running clothes I’ve been loving recently, and today it’s all about the gear!  I always joke that when I’m getting ready for a long run I feel like I’m packing for a trip, it’s borderline ridiculous the amount of stuff I end up carrying with me, but over the past year I think I’ve found some stuff that really works for me!  Here’s everything I had laid out ready to go for the Disneyland Half Marathon:

Hydration Belt – Since I started training for my first full marathon a year ago I’ve been using the Nathan’s Speed Waistpack (pictured above) I love that the strap is nice and wide, velcro and it’s easy to adjust while running.  It has 2 ten ounce flasks (I usually do one water, one Powerade) and a small pouch that easily fits all my running necessities (chapstick, energy chews, tissues, a key and sometimes my iPhone or camera).  

Garmin & HR Monitor – I didn’t get a Garmin until I began training for a full marathon last year.  Up until then I used RunKeeper on my phone and that worked great until my runs started getting longer and longer and the battery wasn’t lasting.  I found a great deal on the Garmin 405cx and finally broke down and got one, I used it for my training through the marathon, but never really learned how to use anything but the “start” and “stop” buttons so I quickly got frustrated and as soon as the marathon was over I went back to RunKeeper.

Friends, here is a tip – if you get a Garmin, learn how to use the darn thing!  Honestly, the watch can do some pretty cool stuff if you are familiar with more than the start and stop buttons!  This summer I discovered the Learning Center on the Garmin website which has short videos (about a minute each) that teach you how to use all the different features – since then my Garmin and I have been on great terms! 

In the past couple of months I’ve started wearing my heart rate monitor too, I’m not totally confident with interpreting the data I’m getting from it, but I’m learning!

iPhone & Holder – I use my iPhone for music/ podcasts when I run.  I’ve considered getting something smaller like an iPod nano, but in the end I decided I like having my phone with me when I run for safety reasons.  I either put it in my hydration belt pouch or use a Tuneband – it’s comfortable, stays in place and mine’s lasted well over a year.

Chapstick – I am a chapstick addict (Burt’s Bees to be specific).  I learned my lesson the hard way back in March when I ran the NYC 13.1 and forgot to put chapstick in my belt…I PR’d that race and I think it’s because I couldn’t wait to get back to my car to get my lip stuff!  Eventually I did think to stop at one of the medical tents and ask for vaseline which helped, but now I always keep one in my hydration belt.

Fuel – right now I’m using pink lemonade Honey Stinger Chews and strawberry lemonade or lemon-lime Powerade.  I try to train with the lemon-lime Powerade since that’s what they have at most runDisney events (let me tell you the blue Powerade on the course at the Disneyland Half really threw me for a loop!).  The Honey Stinger Chews are organic and not as sweet / sugary tasting as some of the other fuel options I’ve tried out, they aslo make these great Stinger Waffles that I like pre-run (I find them a little messy for during a run, they’re sort of waffle cone texture).

Camera – Yes, a camera is an odd running accessory for most people, but not at runDisney races!  I didn’t run with my camera at my first runDisney event (because I was concerned about carrying the extra weight) and I definitely regretted it.  Since my camera was a few years old I was in the market for a new smaller/ lighter camera and right before the Disneyland Half I bought the Canon PowerShot ELPH 110HS

Running with camera in hand!

Yes, the person at Best Buy looked at me like I was crazy when I told them I was looking for something that fit in my hand comfortably while running, but during the race I barely felt it and I got some great “on the run” pictures!

On the run character photo!

Other – Some other things I don’t travel to a race without:

  • a small foam roller or Tiger Tail Muscle Massager – runners, if you don’t use either of these TRY THEM!  Check out this “How to Foam Roll Like a Pro” graphic to get started!
  • golf balls – arches hurt?  roll them out on golf balls (works better than tennis balls and even better if you freeze them!)
  • compression pants – I’ll put these on after an ice bath for anything over 15 miles, I wore them on the flight home after the WDW Marathon last year and I really think they helped!

Thanks for stopping by and I’m looking forward to hearing what running products you’re loving now!

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