No problem. Here is your easy how-to-pack guide.
A few assumptions:
- There is limited space in the van and you are sharing it with several other runners
- You want to compact everything you can into as little a bundle as possible
- You want to be able to find what you need without removing everything from your bag
- You will want most of your stuff packed away but will need ready access to a few personal things (phone, wallet, snacks, water, etc.)
The solution? Plastic bags. Lots and lots of clear plastic bags. I use the gallon size freezer bags because they are stronger and won't tear. Grab those, a black sharpie, and get organized.
And it all looks like this.
|These gallon sized bags are for the running clothes you will wear each leg.
|These bags are for other items I will explain below.
|Same, more items you will need.
|This is what I will wear on leg 2. That is typically a night run, so I want to make sure I am as visible as possible.
|And here they are, all packed tightly in plastic bags and ready to go. I can easily find each bag and be ready to go without looking for my shorts, shirt, or socks.
|This is one of the cold weather bags. It has my sweatpants and a long-sleeve tech shirt. I don't expect to need this to run, but I want to have it just in case the weather changes and I need to be warmer.
|This is my second cold weather bag. I have a light-weight hoodie and a beanie in here. I wouldn't run in this, but I will probably want to put it on when I am out supporting my other teammates on their night legs.
|This is all the gear I will need at night. I have a safety vest, headlamps, and rear blinky lights so I will be as visible as possible to other runners, team vans, and cars just passing by.
|The towel and washcloth (in its own smaller bag) so I can wash up after each leg.
|Here's the same run gear packed tightly into the bag. I also pack an extra pair of earbuds in this bag so I am not scrambling around to find them when it comes time to run.
|And here's everything packed into my gym bag and ready to go. My running shoes fit in here, too. Packing the bags tightly means I can get away with a smaller bag.
|My First-Aid kit. Don't leave home without it.
|I also pack a small toiletry bag with just the basics. No one wants to ride next to a stinky runner.
|Here's the personal bag, packed and ready. Because it's small, I can keep this bag near me in the van and have all that I need. My other bigger bag can go in the back of the van or underneath the seats and be out of everyone's way.
|This is it. All I need to run a relay race.
And with that, I'm ready to go!