Packing for Racecations

Hello, 2017! 2016 was an absolute garbage fire and everyone on the planet is happy to greet you and start out on a great foot. Starting out solidly for a lot of us means one magical word: Racecation. If you're like me and live in the colder areas of the US, traveling to warmer climates for a race is a great way to not only get a break from winter, but also to start off 2017 happy and refreshed.

So you pick a race, train, and get ready to go! There's only one catch: packing for a Racecation is difficult. You need all of your non-running essentials and have the additional task of managing to fit all of your running gear into your bag(s) as well. Odds are, while you might travel somewhere for a race, you likely won't only be racing while you're there, and if you're like me and only pack in a small carry on roller suitcase and a tote or backpack, there's an extra layer of difficulty. So how do you fit everything into your bags? 

Photo by Stephen Cheong-Leen (@cheongleen)

Photo by Stephen Cheong-Leen (@cheongleen)

Photo by Stephen Cheong-Leen (@cheongleen)

Photo by Stephen Cheong-Leen (@cheongleen)

First, I want you to know that it is possible and I'm going to be your Raecation packing Sherpa. It is 100% possible to pack several days worth of vacation wear and running gear into a single roller carry on and a backpack. Below, I'll walk you through how I plan to pack for the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend in Disney World (Orlando, FL). This is a bit early, as the race is at the end of February, but I know there is a lot of Racecation packing happening right now and I wanted to give everyone a resource ahead of time!

As I mentioned above, I pack in two bags: a roller carry on (it is compliant with at the very least Southwest and Delta, which are the primary two airlines I fly) and a backpack. That's it! I do not ever, ever check baggage. I know some of you love it; it is nice to not have to worry about hauling luggage through the TSA checkpoints and around the airport. I had a bad experience flying to Hawai'i in high school with band (my airplane-proof bass guitar case came out CRACKED and a friend's trumpet came out in pieces) and I will never check a bag again, if I can help it. Plus it's nice not worrying about it being lost or on the wrong flight if there are flight cancellations and delays, and it's nice not worrying about waiting on it at baggage claim. Still haven't swayed you? Maybe the below will! Below is my personal packing list for the RunDisney Race. I will be there for four days, but I always pack for once extra day, just in case.

The Racecation Packing List

The Basics

  • Shampoo, Conditioner
  • Body Wash/Soap
  • Toothbrush/Toothpaste
  • Hairbrush/Comb
  • Contacts/Solution/Glasses
  • Face Wash/Moisturizer
  • Sunscreen
  • Vitamins

Non running outfits 

  • A nice outfit/dress for a nice dinner/lunch
  • Two pairs of Lululemon athletic shorts 
  • Two V-Neck shirts, one Chicago running based shirt, one tank top
  • Undergarments
  • Socks (Balega)
  • Sandals (Birkenstocks)
  • Nike Prestos (for walking around the parks)
  • Pajamas

Running Gear

  • Shoes (I will be running in my Saucony Kinvara 7s) and clip 
  • RoadID
  • Compression socks (I wear them AFTER)
  • Second Skin tights and Nike Pro Shorts (exciting info on Second Skin coming Febraury 1! For now, I have my nike tights for this post!)
  • My charity singlet (I'm running for Sophie and Madigan's Playground! Donate here!)
  • Running belt (Nike)
  • Running Headphones and iPhone 7 adapter (I use Yurbuds)
  • Gu ( I take pre-workout before and Gu mid way through)
  • Plastic baggy of Watermelon Athena Pre Workout from Unico (here!)
  • Blender Bottle
  • Collapsable, packable Brooks Running Jacket
  • Chicago Flag Headband (from Sweatybandz, here!)

Pain relievers, creams, etc

  • Sample Size Icy Hot packet (TSA approved)
  • Tylenol Extra Strength
  • KT Tape (four strips, each cut in two)
  • Lacrosse Ball (to roll out, sans roller)

Additional Items

  • Laptop (I have a 13" MacBook Air) and charger
  • iPhone charger
  • Book for flight

So that's it! I know I made it seem really simple, but it can be if you take the time to trim out unnecessary items. You can use a hotel's hairdryer, for example, so that saves you room. You can tie your running shoes to the outside of your bag to save space. It's all about being creative! 

i hope this helps! Have a question? Leave a comment!