How To: Pack for a Relay

Since we’re only 8 days out from the Mother of All Relays, Hood to Coast, I figure that there are probably people wondering what to pack.

Since I just recently did the Ragnar Relay Northwest Passage, my packing relay essentials is still freshly in my mind.

I’m still a relative newbie to relaying but I’ve had lots of Oiselle teammates and many runner friends whom have done tons of relays provide me great advice along the way.

To provide you some ideas on what to pack, I’m re-posting just the packing section of the original blog post with some additional items to consider. Enjoy!

Tip: Pack each of your leg outfits including your undergarments, socks, fuel, etc. into gallon ziplock baggies. This will be useful for easily finding your outfit – no panicking! – and for packaging up those sweaty post-leg outfits. Be nice to your vanmates and don’t stink up the vehicle.

From the Ragnar recap:

One key component of relaying is ensuring that you don’t overpack or underpack. I began packing two nights before the relay with regards to my race outfits. One great tip is to pack each of your three race outfits (one per relay leg) in a gallon-sized ziplock baggy for easy retrieval of the outfit and for storing the sweaty, stinky post-run aftermath. No one wants a dirty locker room in such close quarters.

My race outfits included the following:

Leg 1: Oiselle Team singlet and Roga Shorts in Poppy (currently on sale!)

Leg 2: Mesh Tank in Violet (previous season) and Roga Shorts in Black

Leg 3: Winona Tank in Poppy and Diamond Roga Shorts in Indigo Diamond


Here’s my relay packing list and I hope that it helps you determine what to bring on yours.

  • Three race outfits + socks + sports bras in ziplock bag
  • Extra undergarments: undies, sports bras, etc.
  • Extra socks including PRO Compression sleeves for racing and PRO Compression socks for recovery
  • Extra race essentials including:
  • iPod Nano
  • Garmin 305
  • Extra tank tops and shorts for lounging between legs
  • Long-sleeved top and sweatpants during nighttime chill
  • Advil gel capsules
  • Unscented insect repellent — came in super handy around exchange 15 as everyone was getting bitten! So many people asked me to spray them and I’m glad I came prepared
  • Body Glide for anti-chaffing
  • ShowerPills — super handy to freshen up on the fly without a shower (available also on Amazon here — Amazon Prime it!)
  • Neutrogena facial wipes — quickly freshen up after a leg
  • Wet Ones
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Lip balm with SPF
  • Sunscreen
  • Deodorant
  • Hair comb
  • Dry shampoo — didn’t end up using this but it would be nice to freshen up the hair in between legs
  • Icy Hot spray — didn’t end up using this but it’d come in handy for cooling pain relief
  • Toothbrush
  • Other essential bathroom toiletries
  • Extra toilet paper in case of emergency
  • Cowbells
  • Portable Power Pack — this came in SO handy for on the go and speedy recharging of my iPhone!!
  • Extra hair ties




In addition to the above items, here are the food items that I would recommend bringing for a relay:

  • Bagels
  • Peanut Butter
  • Oatmeal raisin chocolate chip cookies – or any cookies
  • Gummy bears — even though I failed to remember that I had brought them!
  • Baby carrots
  • Hummus
  • Pretzels and/or peanut butter-filled pretzels
  • Sliced deli meat
  • Chips — in my case, I lived off of Cheetos for the sodium – you’ll likely want to opt for super salty easily digestible potato chips
  • Picky Bars — the best bars, dude!
  • Nuun Hydration — the best electrolyte that is sugar-free
  • PB&J sandwiches
  • Chocolate milk or chocolate coconut water
  • Coconut water
  • Bananas
  • Apples

For additional relay van packing essentials, check out this Oiselle blog post from my relay queen teammate on What to Pack for Hood to Coast.

Update: this just in from #hitreset #yogaforathletes gurus, JasYoga — don’t forget these essentials. Who doesn’t need a hamburger for the road and hammy stretch time? Check out their blog for must-do #vanyoga moves!


2 thoughts on “How To: Pack for a Relay

  1. Pingback: *Fuel Friday ~ meal planning for HTC* | wasntjustthewinetalking

  2. Pingback: Race Recap: Hood to Coast 2013 | sarahthefitfoodie

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