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Packing Light

by Meghann on May 3, 2012

Out-of-state marathons have their perks (exploring a new area, dedicated “girl’s weekend” with my sister, traveling,etc) and their not-so perks (packing, figuring out where to eat before the race, packing, and did I mention packing?).


There’s a lot of pressure when it comes to packing for any out-of-state race. (Check out my posts on packing for a half ironman or for a Ragnar Relay race) You have to consider race gear, electronics, comfy clothes, snacks, and so much more.

We’ll be in Cincinnati for three days. We arrive Friday morning and leave Sunday after the race. Since it’s such a short trip my goal was to fit everything in a carry-on. Doesn’t sound hard, but I am not a light packer by any means. I’m one of those people who tends to overpack because I never know what I feel like I’m going to wear when I wake up the next morning. Even while trying to keep it light, I still packed two separate options for the three days we’ll be there just in case.

Here’s a tip for anyone who is flying out the same day as a marathon – pack something comfortable!


Our flight is Sunday evening and I know from past experience that I will NOT want to wear jeans or even a real bra after the marathon. (This might be TMI, but after the San Diego marathon I chafed pretty bad from my sports bra and ended up letting the girls fly free on the way home.) So I packed comfy yoga pants, a loose fitting cotton shirt, a light hoodie jacket, and a cotton lounge bra for the flight home.


Biggest piece of advice I can offer is having a lounge bra to wear after a race or after any long run. So much more comfortable than a real bra. Trust me.

The clothes took up most of the room in the suitcase, but also came with the least amount of pressure. After that came the race gear. (which I went over and over in my head to make sure I didn’t forget anything).


  • Running Shoes
  • Socks (+ extra socks just in case!)
  • Race outfit
  • Fanny Pack (for camera + cellphone)
  • Headband
  • Garmin
  • Ipod
  • Ipod holder
  • (I plan to purchase GUs at the expo since I’m out)

Electronics + Chargers


(some electronics were in use and are unpictured)

  • Droid XYBoard (part of my Verizon Brand Ambassadorship)
  • DSLR
  • camera Chargers
  • Ipod chargers
  • point and shoot
  • garmin charger
  • droid charger
  • laptop
  • laptop charger

Toiletries and make-up


I decided to go au natural this weekend and left my curling iron and straightener at home, as well as most of my hair products. It’s just easier to throw my hair in a ponytail and really not worth messing with. Plus, that stuff takes up a ton of room!

I’m also saving room by only bringing my running shoes and a pair of flip flops that I plan to wear on the plane. No other shoes are needed. πŸ™‚


Done. It all fits!


My laptop is in the pink bag, as well as my DSLR case, snacks for the flight, a magazine, and important documents.

I’m not sure Maddie liked what was going on here.


Derek was pumping Maddie up this morning with all the fun they were going to have this weekend. I caught phrases such as “all you can eat treats” “baseball at the bar” and “sleeping ’til noon” Something tells me they’re not going to miss me at all. πŸ˜‰

I originally planned to get lunch on the road, but ended up staying in town later than planned. When it was time to eat I decided to dive into the leftovers I had set aside for Derek’s dinner (sorry babe!)


In my defense, he has dug into plenty of leftovers that I’ve saved before I had the chance to eat them. The joys of living together, right?


The veggie lentil burger was still good – even better!

With a side of carrot sticks, cherry tomatoes, and a pickle.


Alright, now it’s time to really hit the road. I’m so behind! eek!!!

1 Ali May 3, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Good luck on the race!! Race weekends are always so much fun!!

2 Mary @ food and fun on the run May 3, 2012 at 1:56 pm

Good luck Meghann!!! You are going to rock Flying Pig! Any runner tracking available?
Mary @ food and fun on the run recently posted..The Country Music Marathon: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

3 Krissy @ Shiawase Life May 3, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Great packing, Meghann!
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4 Dana May 3, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Have a great race!
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5 Lizzie May 3, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Good luck!! Have fun!! Don’t forget comfy shoes for the flight back, too!
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6 Kristen @ notsodomesticated May 3, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Good luck! Can’t wait to hear about it!!
Kristen @ notsodomesticated recently posted..Every fiber in my being hurts.

7 Hillary May 3, 2012 at 2:35 pm

Packing stresses me out for a normal trip, but packing for races stress me out infinitely more. Looks like you got it all covered!

8 Angela @ Happy Fit Mama May 3, 2012 at 2:51 pm

I tend to over pack because I’m always afraid I’ll forget something. In most cases whatever I forget I could easily buy somewhere at my destination.

I’ve never been able to fit anything in only a carry on no matter how long the trip is – that’s how bad of a packer I am!
Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted..Sexy Shoulder Workout

9 Dori May 3, 2012 at 2:53 pm

You know what’s even more comfortable than a lounge bra? No bra at all. I have big boobs and I NEVER wear a bra to travel. I wear a tank top or t-shirt with a big, comfy hoodie over it and no one would ever be able to tell.
Dori recently posted..Article on Get Tressed: My Student Hair Styling Experience

10 Dana May 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Have you thought about compression socks for the flight? I flew San Antonio to Boston right after running the Rock ‘n’ Roll half and I was so glad I had them. I really think they helped with the soreness and everything.
Now I’m like an old lady and I wear them every time I fly. πŸ™‚

11 Courtney May 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm

Awesome post, so helpful! LOVE that pink and black/white striped bag. πŸ˜‰
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12 elise May 3, 2012 at 4:02 pm

Good Luck on your travels and race.

13 Sarah @ RunningChickago May 3, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Good luck this weekend! πŸ™‚ Have fun with your sister!
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14 Dawn May 3, 2012 at 4:08 pm

Thanks for the after race clothing tips. This is my first away from home race. My hubby, daughter and I are all running the 10k on Saturday then driving home 3+ hours. Will be packing comfy clothes!
Good luck on the race to both you and your sister!

15 Elizabeth May 3, 2012 at 4:12 pm

I love the Flying Pig!! I am from Columbus but have a ton of family in Cincy so it is always a huge tradition!! For the night before the race you should eat at Pompilios! It is super yummy!! And its famous, it has been a restaurant in a few movies! However it is on the KY side, but just a walk across the purple bridge into Newport! Good luck in your race!

16 Katie @ Peace Love and Oats May 3, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Hope you had a good drive to Orlando!!
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17 Caitlin @ This Bride's Joyride May 3, 2012 at 4:54 pm

I 100% agree on the lounge bra after a race! And flip-flops!

Good luck this weekend πŸ™‚

18 Mary May 3, 2012 at 6:38 pm

My old dog Chloe used to look at suitcases like that when we would get ready for a trip. It always made me feel so guilty:(. Derek sounds like he has things covered this time though. Have fun and rock out that race!!!!!! Can’t wait for your recap.

19 Macrae Carreker May 3, 2012 at 7:43 pm

Good luck!!!! You and Kelly must watch Chariots of Fire, one of the best if not the best running movie ever πŸ™‚ We watched it on every cross-country road trip!

20 Katie @ Creature of Habit May 4, 2012 at 12:31 am

Good luck on the race!

And I definitely know what you mean about chaffing. I still have a mark from about three months ago when I wore some terrible bra with a wire on a six miler. There is a reason sports bras don’t have wires!
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21 Emily N May 4, 2012 at 9:57 am

Make sure to buy a sweaty band at the expo. Maybe one with pink piggies on it! (that’s the one I am looking for). 1. for the obvious “flying pig” reason. 2. sweaty bands make their home here in the nati!
Emily N recently posted..Marathon Week- Thursday: 3 Days to Go

22 Steph @321delish May 4, 2012 at 12:57 pm

GOOD LUCK! I can’t wait to hear how it goes!!! Kill it!!!
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