Take a load off, fanny.
June 10, 2007 7:35 PM   Subscribe

AskMe Runners: Do you use a lumbar pack/bum bag/fanny pack? If so, how do you keep it from flopping around while you run?

I am both a frequent hiker and all-terrain runner. It's hot where I live, so I like to have water with me while I'm out. When hiking, I've carried a CamelBack backpack, which, though it's sometimes heavy (and a bit too big for my needs) works pretty well.

When I try to jog with it, though, I always have to hold onto the shoulder straps in order to keep it from moving up and down with each stride. In the past, I have run simply holding a bottle of water in my hand, or using bottle holders like this (still floppy) and this (not hands-free). The latter holder is nice because it has a tiny pocket for a few bucks and lip balm, but I can always tuck that stuff into my shoe/bra so the pocket's not a must.

I'd really like to buy this cute bum bag but can't figure out how to keep it from bouncing up and down as I run either. How do my fellow runners deal with this? Alternately, how do you carry water with you when out on the trail?
posted by Brittanie to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (11 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
They make them specifically for runners. Here is one, though I don't have any experience with this model. I think most sports equipment stores will carry something like it. You might want to to and try one on as opposed to ordering one online.
posted by jiiota at 7:42 PM on June 10, 2007

Fuel Belt
posted by underdetermined at 8:31 PM on June 10, 2007

Best answer: Similar to the Fuel Belts are Amphipods. I just got one for running and am quite happy with it. I really don't even notice it.
posted by driveler at 8:40 PM on June 10, 2007

I use a fuel belt when I'm doing long runs (I have the four-bottle one). The pocket is big enough for my cell phone and a power gel, which is enough for me. It doesn't bounce around at all, and like driveler I forget I have it on after awhile. I did try a belt with one big water bottle (like this, as opposed to the ones with a few smaller bottles) and I found it did bounce around and ride up a bit -- not as much as I expected, but I do like the fuel belt better.
posted by AV at 8:52 PM on June 10, 2007

Response by poster: Those of you who prefer a fuel belt over a lumbar pack, please tell me why. I think I'd rather carry just one bottle, but if I carry four 8oz bottles I end up with more water.
posted by Brittanie at 9:46 PM on June 10, 2007

Well, my only complaint with the one-bottle belt was the aformentioned bouncing around and riding up (because the weight isn't as evenly distributed). I will admit that the one-bottle kind look less dorky, but then again when you're running ten miles that's not much of a concern.

This is just my personal theory, but I think the one-bottle belts are better suited for guys, who are more wedge-shaped (i.e. smaller hips and less booty) which would keep the belt from riding up as much. But if you're particularly long-waisted or have a boyish shape, you'll probably be fine with the one-bottle belt.

Hope that helps!
posted by AV at 4:40 AM on June 11, 2007

I also run frequently in hot temperatures and have been exploring hydration options outside of my Camelbak, which I love, but is also a little unwieldy at times.

Lately, I've been really happy with the ultimate direction water bottle -- it really is a step above other bottles, in terms of design. The grip on the bottle itself is really well thought out -- I ran a marathon with mine the other day and it was shockingly comfortable compared to running long distances with the Camelbak.

I dunno... if you don't carry a lot of extra stuff, you might wanna give it a shot. I decided to pick one up after seeing a ton of pictures of people running with 'em in various trail running magazines... and I'm beginning to think they might be on to something.
posted by ph00dz at 5:59 AM on June 11, 2007

I used a bum bag to carry water etc when training for the London Marathon. The thing that stopped it bouncing: a safety pin either side through the belt part and attached to my shorts. Low tech, but it worked okay.
posted by crocomancer at 6:57 AM on June 11, 2007

My coworker who competed in a 100k (!!!) last weekend says that all the around-the-waist systems he's tried have been annoyingly bouncy. Instead, he carries a water bottle in his hand. He says there's some kind of strap thing that goes around his hand, so he's not actually using his fingers to clutch the bottle all the time. I can't get details right now, but I bet a specialty running store would know what you were talking about if you came in with that kind of description.
posted by vytae at 8:36 AM on June 11, 2007

I have a lot of experience with very long runs, and while I used to use a UD two bottle fanny pack, I've more recently switched to just two fastdraws (like the one linked above) in my hands, and a very small and light fanny pack for some essentials on my back.

While the UD fanny packs do a fairly good job of not bouncing, I felt that the one I carried contributed to a piriformis problem I had that sidelined me for several months.

In general, though, the folks I run with use every possible option for carrying things, it really does come down to individual comfort. Many people like camelbacks, many use fanny packs, many use just handhelds.
posted by OmieWise at 7:26 AM on June 14, 2007

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