Packing for stage races

You walked into the room, and everyone pointed at your waist. Loud laughter followed. Good lord! You had forgotten to put on pants that morning! Oh, the shame.

So it was just another bad dressing dream, but its real-life equivalent is getting to a remote trail run, and realising you’ve left your trail shoes behind. Or your hydration bladder. Or even only your contact lenses.

The small items often punch way above their weight.

To spare you the inconvenience and the shame, here’s our list of must-take items, in random order.


Running clothes for each stage

Trail shoes for each day

Socks for each stage, plus spare

Gloves for warmth and protection

Peak or cap for sun protection

Sports glasses (pref photochromic)

Contact lenses if you use

Leg compression (sleeves/socks)

Arm protectors with UV rating

Head torch with spare batteries

BUFF or similar for wind/sun protection

Beanie if racing in the mountains

ID bracelet to ID you when you can’t

Chafe cream if you have rub issues

Hydration pack containing:

reservoir with water

soft bottles with electrolyte drink

trail snacks in zip-lock bag

emergency blanket

phone with emergency numbers

light waterproof jacket

zip-lock bag with loo paper

sunblock/lip balm


Warm jacket for before/after stages

Closed shoes for socials/cold weather

Underwear that doesn’t chafe

Shirts and shorts for after the run

Jeans for prizegiving/socials

Tracksuit for prizegiving/socials

Long sleeve shirts for cold/high UV

Slops for foot hygiene after showers

Swim gear if there’s a pool/river/lake

Massage oil to soothe joints/muscles


Own pillow


Hot water bottle

Eye mask to sleep during the day

Towel of good size and fl u_ ness

Toiletries (especially deodorant)

Power bank to charge phone

Lantern to illuminate inside of tent

Wet wipes for er, wet wipes

Cash for the bar

Snacks just in case

Credit card for medical emergencies


Bin bag for wet clothing and shoes

Rehydration powder/concentrate

Headache tabs because you never know what

Anti-infl ammatory meds if you use them.


Although this list will guide you, do still double-check you’re wearing pants before you step outside!


There are small things that make a huge di_ erence, before, during and after your races.

Earplugs reduce sounds by 15-30 decibels, and can improve your sleep by up to a level of Miraculous.

offer familiar texture, scent, thickness, and comfort. Better sleep means better recovery, reduced risk of fatigue-induced mistakes, and subsequent injuries.

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