I’ve already discussed what I bring on racecations, but today’s Tuesdays on the Run is 5 tips for racecation packing. I’ve run 11 half marathons, and almost always run when on vacation. So I’ve had a little bit of practice.
Running Clothes in Your Carryon!
This should absolutely be a no-brainer, but too many people learn it the hard way. Whatever is really, really important to your race — carry it on!
I don’t really suggest wearing your running shoes. It seems to make sense, but it’s a pain when going through security if you’re flying. So they usually go in my carryon.
Stick socks in your shoes
Some people put all sorts of things into their sneakers to fill up that wasted space, but do you really want gloves you’re putting on your hands in your sneakers?
I do put my socks into my sneakers.
Add +/- 10 degrees to the forecast
Unless you’re going somewhere you absolutely know will be warm (like Hawaii) or cold (the North Pole? Siberia?). Even cold places can be surprisingly warm at the right time of year. Don’t trust the weather forecast. They lie.
Which makes packing for racecations really frustrating. My best advice is to have plenty of layers. Sometimes I will pack two completely different outfits, but usually there just isn’t space and you have to make a decision.
If you’re going somewhere warm and you’re pretty sure it will be warm — and if you like running skirts — keep in mind that running skirts (capris, too, sometimes) and running tops can do double duty for racing and sight seeing.
If you’re going somewhere that is normally warm, still check the weather. My first Vegas half (also my first half) was my coldest half on record so far; it’s also the only one I’ve run in December so far, so that seems to make sense, only people don’t think Vegas can get cold. Trust me, it can and it does.
Well, I did run Austin in February. It was a glorious day. But that just goes to show you: having lived in Austin for 17 years, I knew that February is a very iffy month weather-wise. It can sleet or it can be very, very warm.
Just don’t take the weather for granted. Weather will surprise you.
Try packing cubes for your race clothes
Packing cubes will take up a bit more space in your suitcase, but oftentimes it’s worth it. It makes it easy to separate my everyday clothes from my race clothes. If it has a handle, it makes a nice little gear bag (if you have someone with you to take it from you before the race).
I am partial to the packing cubes from Flight 001 (not an affiliate link). I’ve had mine for years. There is one side for clean clothes and one side for laundry. They come in their own bag, though, so I just take that to use for a laundry bag.
And they have holes on the side that allow you to squeeze out some of the air and make them even smaller.
Stick a garbage bag in your luggage
Running out of room? I find no matter how conservatively I start to pack, I almost always end up having to take stuff out. Garbage bags have multiple uses: laundry bag, rain poncho, insulating layer if it’s cold. They basically take up no space so stick one in there.
Tell me one thing that is always in your gear bag