The Runner's Race Day Checklist

Preparing for race day is just as important a part of your preparations as the training itself. Here's a handy checklist on what running kit to bring with you on a race day.

An image of The Runner's Race Day Checklist
  1. Running shoes - Make sure that these are well worn in with around 150 miles (or approx 250km) miles worth of running. Don't make the mistake of wearing brand new shoes for a race. Always take spare laces with you.  
  2. Running clothing - Don’t wear new gear (shorts, socks or top) on race day as you may well find out that it rubs in places you don’t want it to, exactly when you don’t need it to.  
  3. A towel - For use if there are shower facilities at the end of the race or even just to towel yourself down when you’re dripping with sweat.  
  4. Refuse sack or old top - It’s essential to keep warm on race day once you’ve deposited your belongings. Wear this to stay warm and then ditch it just before the gun goes off.
  5. Sun cream and shades - You may well have been training in the cold and dark, but remember race day could end up being hot and sunny.
  6. Mobile phone - So that you can meet up your friends for well deserved drink at the end of the race or so that they can let you know where they've found a spot to watch from.
  7. Vaseline and muscle rubs - Vaseline could prove useful for the nasty chafing that could occur without it, particularly on the nipples, while other creams such as your muscle rub should not be forgotten.
  8. Muscle support, strapping, bandages and plasters - A small first aid kit with other essentials is always useful should you have a mishap prior to the race or have a pre-existing issue that you need help with.
  9. Snack foods - Bananas, cereal bars, chocolate and energy gels could all be useful additions. It is important never to eat anything on race day that you aren’t used to, or you could spend more time with the runs rather than running.    
  10. Drinks - Being well hydrated is essential before the start of any run or race, so water and energy drinks are essential. Many events will have water stations around the course to help keep you hydrated.  
  11. Safety pins or magnets for your race number -You can never have too many of these. Take enough for your friends just in case they forget theirs.    
  12. Race number and race informationRead the information provided by the organisers to make sure you know all you need to know about the race. Secure your running number onto your top the night before.  
  13. Kit bagIf you were provided with a kit bag to deposit in the baggage area, don’t forget to bring that along. Baggage handlers at races usually won’t take your bag unless it’s in the official race kit bag.    
  14. Timing device - The timing chips that many of the big races use are essential if you are to get your finish time. Without it you won’t appear on the results. Make sure you give it back at the end of the event or you could lose any deposit you put down on it.  
  15. Emergency cash - Make sure that you have money just to cover you in the event of any unforseen emergency purchases that you need to make before or after the race.