On episode six of season four of Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw says this most Carrie-ish of Carrie-isms to her pals over lunch trays at Chelsea’s Cafeteria: “Shopping is my cardio.”
And, well, the sentiment resonated with me. Because I literally make shopping my cardio. On Saturdays, I change into jogging gear — which includes a tiny, stretchy little fanny pack (more on that later) — put on my running playlist called “Running Playlist” (which is really just Robyn’s Body Talk), and motor over to a bookstore in my neighborhood. Then I run to a nearby clothing store I like (0.4 miles), stop, peruse, and then run to a home-décor store (0.3 miles), where I again stop and peruse. This method works for me: I’m a terrible runner, and find that I’m more likely to get moving if I have built-in breaks scheduled at places that I like. If I decide just to run a couple of miles without stopping in stores, I’ll still generally try to end at the supermarket for groceries or at the deli to pick up paper towels.
Now back to the fanny pack: My weird stop-and-go style of running makes carrying a credit card while I jog necessary. And my Nike fanny pack is the object that makes that possible. Or less horrifying, anyway: pre–fanny pack, I carried the card around in my sports bra — which was uncomfortable (plastic, sensitive skin) and exceedingly rude to the salesperson who had to watch me withdraw a sweaty piece of plastic from my chest and then touch it.
The Nike fanny pack is very slim, but expandable: In it, you can fit a house key, a credit card, and maybe a third thing (some tissues, perhaps). It’s not a Fashion Fanny Pack, and should not be worn slung around a shoulder, but it’s by no means terrible-looking; I picked it because when you search “running pack” online, it’s the skinniest one that comes up. It’s black and plain and can hide very easily under a T-shirt. It doesn’t slip down your thighs or thrash around when you run — it fastens tightly and securely to your waist.
In sum, if you’ve ever paid for a water bottle with a dollar bill extracted from your sports bra, or if you’ve put your keys on your necklace only to have them bop around angrily on your chest, I would classify this fanny pack as a must have.
Other Strat-approved fanny packs
“This classic zippered look from State has a small pocket inside for little important things, like cash and keys.”
“This Etsy designer has a ton of good fanny-pack designs.”
“This is actually a wallet that attaches to a belt, so inside it’s got card slots, a space for your ID, a zipper for change, and a slot for cash.”
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