Packing Hacks for Runners

The Olympics have me all fired up and reflecting on how proud I am to be an athlete. I’m far from being elite, but being a long distance runner is a huge part of my life and my identity. Traveling doesn’t stop me from training! Here are a couple things I did and wish I would have done to prepare my running gear for a trip across the ocean.

These tips should be beneficial whether you’re heading across the country for a week or to another country for a few months!

On the flight

  1. Wear your running shoes on your flight. Running shoes are usually bulky. Boots and flats can be rolled or flattened to save room. Tennis shoes cannot, so wear ’em and save a little space!
  2. Consider wearing compression socks on the plane, especially if you’re a woman taking birth control pills. Long flights are rough on anyone, but puts female athletes (esp. those on the pill) at risk for blood clots. Compression socks can be worn under almost anything, and your legs will thank you when you arrive at your destination!

In the bag

  1. Pack old/ugly/unwanted technical clothing to throw away at the end of your trip. Although I’d love to give the expensive Lululemon-vibe (spoiler alert- I own nothing from there!), my space is my luggage was much more valuable. I took all of my ugly, unflattering FREE race shirts I’ve accumulated, and pitched them when it was time to head home. More room for souvenir wine! 😉
  2. Make your running tights double as regular leggings. Please, learn from my mistake. I only packed normal cotton leggings, even though running tights are among my favorite pieces of clothing. These are also perfect to fly in! On that note- don’t pack regular socks. Use your technical ones!
  3. You must take a hat. A solid-colored technical hat should suffice. I have a plain black one from H&M, and it’s saved me more times than I can count- whether I’m running, hiking, or being a tourist. My boyfriend has even worn it too! It’s a good thing athleisure is so big right now. 😉 A technical hat is easy to wash, easy to pack, and will save your scalp and face!

Here is my basic Packing List from my very own article on Salty Running!

GPS watch
4 sportsbras
4 pairs technical socks
3 pairs marathon shorts/bottoms*
1 pair spandex shorts
1 pair running tights
4 technical/ugly race t-shirts that I plan on throwing away*
1 technical longsleeve tee*
1 pair shoes**
1 headband
1 vest that can double for regular “fashion” use
1 technical hat
1 water bottle
1 pair cheap gloves for cold days

*dependent on climate/temperature variations
**1 extra pair of shoes: If you are traveling long term and have the packing space, I suggest packing a second pair
foam roller: If I were here more than a year I would purchase one here and likely leave it behind at the end of my trip

If you are traveling short term, I think you can cut the list of clothes in half and get away with 2 of each items… 2 bras, 2 shirts, 2 shorts, etc.

 

You can catch my endless European instagrams under @jamie.redman. Happy trails and safe travels!

 

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