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What I take with me on long runs and marathons

May 25, 2015 | Kit, Running | 8 comments

I’ve had a few requests to divulge what I keep in my backpack when I complete long runs and marathons. I absolutely love my Nathan Sports Hydration pack– my friends bought it for me as a birthday present a few years ago and I haven’t stopped wearing it since.

procompression Paris marathon

I love wearing it as it allows me to drink whenever I want, rather than waiting for water station (or having to battle my way to the table) plus I can drink on the go. A lot of marathons are transitioning to cups for water, which I find impossible to drink from whilst running.

As well as filling my hydration pack with water (2 litres), I use the backpack for numerous other items for marathons or long runs:

Gu gels (that includes a spare for marathons, less depending on the length of the run)

Immodium and painkillers

Loo roll


Phone and headphones

Vaseline pot (for long runs)

Oyster card (for long runs)

Long sleeve top – only for long runs when I’m going straight to brunch/getting the tube home

Keys (house keys or a hotel key if I’m doing a race abroad)

Nuun tablets (or other hydration tabs)

What do you take with you for a run or while running a marathon? 


  1. wendyistakingthelongwayhome

    I love seeing what other people carry with them on the run! I use a handheld for my fuel and wear a spibelt (waist pack). My spibelt carries my phone, wipes, chafing cream, Tailwind ( my fuel), my credit card, and drivers license!

  2. Zoe at Splodz Blogz

    I have only just started using a hydration pack (for hiking rather than running) and I am definitely converted. Can’t believe it’s taken me this long! I can carry more water and it’s much more convenient, meaning I drink more often.

  3. Coco

    I think I have the same Nathan pack. Usually it just has my phone and earbuds, but for races I will add lip balm, individually wrapped personal hygiene wipes and a granola bar.

  4. Kaci @ Running the Next Step

    Does your hydration pack ever feel hot or heavy on your back when you run? I want to try one but I’m worried I wouldn’t like it and would have wasted my money. I usually take a handheld water bottle, ShotBloks, my phone, and headphones when I run.

  5. Chinwe

    I’m new to your blog- and to running- but want to say I absolutely love it! Keep the great posts coming, you aspire to me to get after those miles 🙂

  6. Lauren (@PoweredbyPB)

    I never go without my hydration pack too, it;s just much easier to carry your own water rather than faff about at water stations, I like to carry a mix of coconut water and salts in my water too. I usually pack lots of snacks too.

  7. Liz Wilson

    This is great! Thanks for the tips!

  8. Vieve

    Girl, you are ready for the zombie apocolyse everytime you step out to run — and yet, you are only getting faster in running away from said Zombies, too. Way to be prepared! Me, I just take a hand held 20 oz water bottle with a small pock for my mace and keys. Then a spibelt for my iphone.


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