Hood to Coast Packing List & My Legs!

Note: this list consists of items that I would *like* to bring, but I have a feeling it will be a rude awakening when I actually try to stuff it into a medium-sized backpack.

On Wednesday morning, I’ll be on my way to Seattle to meet the Nuun teams that will be running this year’s Hood to Coast. I’ve been looking forward to this since they day I returned home from Boston. This will be my first relay and my first relay with strangers. But, let’s be real, runners usually aren’t strangers after chatting for 2 minutes and we definitely won’t be strangers after spending 20+ hours in a van together.

Tentative Packing List:

  • Face mask & ear plugs
  • Ibuprofen & Endurolytes
  • Sweatshirt and warm pants
  • Compression socks
  • Small towel
  • Body/baby wipes
  • 4 running outfits in gallon Ziploc bags
  • Water bottle
  • Gloves + HAT/warm headband
  • Garmin
  • iPod (for sleepin’ tunes)
  • Jacket/hoodie
  • Flip flops
  • 2 pairs running shoes
  • Sunglasses (running + regular)
  • Travel pillow- inflatable!
  • Small blanket
  • Car USB charger for iPhone (dual)
  • Sunscreen
  • All the snacks!
  • Colgate Wisps! (no water needed to brush teeth!)
  • Trigger Point Massage Ball (Tiger Tail will be provided)
  • Extra phone battery- JCrew
  • Safety vest + headlamp (Nuun is supplying these, but Corey was nice enough to let me borrow hers!)

*Items in bold were added to the list gradually- based on tips and suggestions from Hood to Coast veterans!

This doesn’t seem like a lot to pack to me but I know I’ll feel differently when I start putting it in a bag. I took a lot of tips from Oiselle’s and Portland Running Company‘s packing lists + many suggestions from friends that have run Hood to Coast before (thanks friends!)

2 pairs of shoes can take up a lot of space but I think it will be worth it. I’m oddly more concerned about what to pack for the 2 days that we’ll be in Seattle than the comfy running apparel I’ll spend most of my time in.

On Wednesday, we arrive, spend time exploring Seattle, and go bowling that night. On Thursday, we visit Oiselle HQ (eeeps!) and run around Green Lake, ride a duck boat (!), and decorate the vans in the evening. And, FRIDAY, we drive and start runnin’ runnin’ runnin’! And, of course, I’m excited for ALL THE BEER in Seaside on Saturday before heading back to Chicago on Sunday afternoon. Dude. It’s going to be a crazy 5 days!

My Leg Assignments:

After my switch from Team Lemonade to Team Cherry Limeade, I’m officially assigned as Runner 4 in Van 1. I will be running a total of 15+ miles which works perfectly with marathon training (especially because I’ll be running on tired legs by the end!)

Leg #1

Hood to Coast Leg 4

7.18 miles with a steady gradual downhill along paved shoulder on Highway 26. The closest thing to this that I’ve run on in the past few months is Cricket Hill in Chicago (ha.) I’m going to keep telling myself that the downhill sections of Boston prepared me for this at least a wee bit. According to our projected paces, I should be running this around 3:30 PM.

Leg #2

Hood to Coast Leg 16

3.78 miles on gently rolling highway, paved shoulder just like the first leg. I’m gonna ROCK this thing. I’ll run this leg around 11 PM so that should be fun (happy that my legs are at relatively ‘normal’ times!)

Leg #3

Hood to Coast Leg 28

4.20 miles, gradual uphill on paved road (narrow highway with limited shoulder). Considering this is my only uphill leg, I think I got lucky [or they were very wise and put the flatland runner on some of the easiest legs. More likely!) This will feel more difficult that it would on fresh legs of course but I’ll be read to bust out those 4+ miles like it’s my job. I’ll be running this leg around 6 AM, so again–normal for my schedule!

Alright, what am I missing people? What else would you pack? How would you save room in your backpack?

Any vets that have run as Runner 4 in the past? Give me all your tips! Tell me all of your stories!


12 thoughts on “Hood to Coast Packing List & My Legs!

  1. Stephanie says:

    This is a great packing list!!! And you can definitely fit a pretty good sized bag with you in the van! Like, definitely bigger than a backpack for sure. I brought a pretty big duffel bag and was able to shove it under the seat.

    And, I think Nuun will provide you with all the Nuun you will need 🙂

    Dude. Have the best freaking time!!!

  2. Kristy Hill (@KristyH5) says:

    do you think you need a headlamp for leg #2 or some sort of lighting?? A hat JIC it rains? Body Glide & bandaids? ummmmmm I have never done a relay but those are my thoughts off top of head. You’re going to have a blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaast!

  3. ed schober says:

    You need a headlamp and a safety vest. Your team might be getting this for you but I wasn’t sure.
    Have fun and good luck!
    My wife flies out on Thursday. They start at 3pm.

  4. Drew Armstrong says:

    Just a couple of quick things since you have a run at night.

    Reflective Vest (Required)
    2 Blinking Red Lights, 1 for your front and 1 for your back (These are required)

    Make sure you pack your clothes in ziplock bags, it makes things easier and organized. You can actually force the air out of the bags which allows you to compress your clothes.

    Here is a link that I came across a couple of years ago which is pretty nice.

    Click to access packing-list-for-participants.pdf

    Good luck from “Team Plumb Crazy”

  5. Fast and Fabulous says:

    I’ve done several relays with mostly people I had never met prior to the race, and all of them turned out to be amazing experiences! Spending 20+ sleepless hours in a van full of sweaty runners just might be my all-time favorite way to make new life-long BFFs! And Hood to Coast is extra-awesome, so have ALL THE FUN, and holla at those Oiselle birds for me!

  6. Maggie says:

    Make sure you have an outfit that will be clean that you can wear when you cross the finish line. I assume even if you aren’t the last runner, you’ll all want to meet her and cross the finish together. And you won’t want to change back into your stinky clothes to do so.

    Make sure you pack a toothbrush and toothpaste in your running bag. I got a chance to brush my teeth in the middle of the night during Ragnar and it felt SO good. Also, any chance I got to wash my hands with actual soap and water (and not hand sanitizer) felt great. If I do a relay again, I think I’ll pack soap “shavings” in a zip lock bag so I can wash my hands on the go.

    Also, bring the travel pillow. And a travel blanket.

    I don’t know how their rules compare, but for Ragnar, everyone (not just runners) had to wear a reflective vest at night, even the drivers. Anyone walking around the exchanges had to wear a vest. And runners also had to wear a headlight and tail light during their night leg.

    Hope you have a blast!

  7. Dominick S. says:

    Packing list looks great and your running leg looks primed for slaughter. Downill 7+ and the other two are relatively flat…FAST!

    Travel pillows…REI has inflatable camping pillows that work great and take up almost no space. You will likely not sleep during the entire run, maybe an hour but it should be fun! As far as beer goes, if you have never been to the Oregon area, keep your eyes peeled for Hair of the Dog Brewing…the BEST in the country.

  8. Lauren says:

    That looks like a good list to me! Of course Nuun will provide all the Nuun and ALL the snacks you could ever want so you don’t need to worry about bringing those things :). Your travel list looks just like mine!

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