Is a Hydration Pack Necessary for Training?

Runners ask me if it’s necessary to carry a hydration pack for training or for a half or full marathon. My answer is always, yes!

Water is given on the course. But, if you are taking run/walk breaks and stop at the water stop, you will kill your time. That’s why I prefer to carry water with me. I recently had the opportunity to sample the Orange Mud Hydration Gear Vest 2L pack.

Orange Mud Hydration Gear Vest 2L pack.

When I took it out of the box, I noticed a few technical things I found quite clever. I’ve had a few of these types of hydration backpacks but the Gear Vest 2 from Orange Mud is different.

I love that Orange Mud uses Hydropack as it’s insert. It can hold up to 35 oz of hydration. The beauty of this pack is it can hold two more hydration packs up to 500 – 600 ml per side! The Hydropack is made using super light materials that are incredible strong and durable!

The Gear Vest 2L also has a couple of compartments that enable you to bring nourishment with you. I try to go all natural and bring raisins or prunes with me. They both give you the boost you need.

How did it do on an 8 mile run?

Amazingly, it didn’t bounce around like so many of these hydration packs do! The Orange Mud Gear Vest 2L stays in place while you run. At first, I found the straw hitting me in the face. Then, I got annoyed, until I noticed there was a handy pocket for it.

After the first mile or two, I didn’t even notice that it was on my back. It was comfortable and moved with me.

I particularly liked the straw, once it was in place. It had an on off toggle. I kept it on the entire time and not once did I get splashed in the face. (I use the Fitletic belt most of the time. My runners laugh at me because every time I take a sip of water, I get splashed all over my face. This didn’t happen with the Orange Mud unit.)

I enjoyed using the Orange Mud Gear Vest 2L. I look forward to taking it with me on longer runs and trail runs. It just makes sense! Plus, I love the colors – black and orange!


It was relatively easy to clean. The pouch opens with a slider on the top and you can rinse the Hydropack. However, I would make sure to wipe it dry with a paper towel. It was difficult to air dry. The straw also disengages from the unit making it easier to clean as well.


The Orange Mud Gear Vest 2L retails for $109. The additional flasks go for $19.99. (I’ll be purchasing those in the near future!) Go to They have a lot of interesting products on the site worthy of a look!