Semper Currens XI: Secrets of the Fanny Pack

Week Ten Training Wrap-Up

This week, the weather in Syracuse was officially declared a heatwave, and the effect it had on my running was predictable. Monday’s gentle 7 miler turned into a grueling endurance test; Tuesday’s tempo run, on the hottest day on record since 1964, petered out halfway through and finished with walks and gentle runs.

I felt burned out and discouraged. I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel, but there was a lot of soul searching. The dream of a BQ and a sub-3:40 finish seemed to vanish in the haze.

Thankfully, the weather broke on Wednesday. By Thursday, I was back on my game with a strong interval run in Onondaga Lake Park, which is just a few minutes from work in downtown Syracuse and which will be my go-to route until the end of the program as daylight is now disappearing fast.

Another fifty miles in the books. I live to fight another week.

The Week Ahead

This is going to be the craziest week of the whole program. Today, I leave for Philadelphia for Tessa’s surgery. We’ll be back in Rochester by Tuesday, and I will be home briefly on Thursday before returning to Rochester on Friday for the Rochester Half-Marathon on Sunday–my tune-up for the main event.

The program is going to have to go out of the window. Fifty miles is going to be a stretch, and I’m going to have to sacrifice either the long run or one of the hard runs to accommodate everything.

Never a dull moment.

Feature o’ the Week: Secrets of the Fanny Pack

It is never-ending source of amusement to Team Love Nugget (“Dad! It’s just NOT COOL!”). But, next to my Brooks Adrenaline GTS shoes, it is the most important part of my running gear.

It is my fanny pack.


It’s about twenty-years-old, made of genuine leather and bought, if memory serves, at the New York State Fair. When fanny packs became uncool to wear while traveling (were they EVER cool?), it was buried at the back of the closet, only to be repurposed when my running career began.

You can keep your fancy-schmancy running belts. This little beauty does the job, and carries all the essentials for everything but my longest runs in its three pockets, as the picture shows. It is nothing short of a microcosm of my life on and off the road.

In the back pocket: 2 Band Aids for emergency purposes, my kokopelli charm and a vial of sand from Sodus Bay, where Tessa and I went on our first date.

In the middle pocket: my car key (not pictured, but a frequent passenger), an emergency gel pack (in a sandwich bag to stop the sticky goo from getting all over when the pack has been consumed), my Road ID bracelet (kept in the pack between runs, but always on my wrist when I am running in the countryside or on unfamiliar routes), my phone and a twelve-ounce bottle of water.

In the front pocket: the all-important, frequently used sandwich bag of tissues. Their presence should be self-explanatory. And if it’s not, well, you really don’t need to know. Trust me.

Team Fox Update

If you’ve been reading Semper Currens regularly, or if you’ve found anything here of use, go to my fundraising page and make a donation to the Michael J. Fox Foundation and help eliminate Parkinson’s!

What’s your go-to piece of gear? And what do others make of it? Leave a comment here, or send me a photo, and I’ll feature it in the next Semper Currens.

About Bruce Pegg

I write about running, music and spirituality.
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1 Response to Semper Currens XI: Secrets of the Fanny Pack

  1. Pingback: Semper Currens XIII: The Andy Wheatcroft Blog | Bruce Pegg

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