Marathon Check List And Tips


Every year (since 2007) I’m trying to do few marathons.


Well, it’s a long answer for another post. But the short one (and I guess the main reason) is that it’ a lot of fun and a great sense of accomplishment. I’m sure others, have many different reasons.

In this post will focus on the check list. It’s part of an app for the google assistant that I’ve created last week.
You can use this app to make sure you didn’t missed anything, just ask “OK google, talk to Marathon List And Tips”.

Here is the check list(s) I’m using in order to make sure everything will work as plan. It’s important to remember that in such a long race, things will go wrong. So don’t be surprise, stay calm, slow down and think how to solve the issue. In most cases, there is an easy solution and you already being in similar situation in your long training runs.

Nevertheless, we all like to be as ready as possible and a check list is a great tool for that.

Below are 3 lists I used. In your hand bag are all the ‘must have’ things. The other lists, also contain important stuff, but you can send it in your suitcase.

In Your Hand Bag

Here are few things you want to make sure to pack or have them with you in the bag you are taking with you to the flight.

  • Something health to eat and drink while you traveling. Focus on things you like and used to eat.


  • Sunscreen is important, especially if it’s going to be a sunny day. For most of us, a marathon is 3-4 hours in the sun.
  • Sunglasses – If you use them on your long runs.
  • A singlet or a t-shirt is important part. Make sure to use the one you have tried during your long runs.

  • Running shoes. It’s the main ‘tool’ for the day. Don’t try a new shoe on race day. Use for the race a shoes you used during at least 2-3 long runs.

  • Compression socks – if you use them in your long runs, bring them. Same with gloves if it’s a cold marathon (e.g. New York / Toronto).

  • The race confirmation is your insurance for the expo. Sometimes, they will wish to see a prof that you are register. Make sure to have in on your phone or print it.

  • Cash, Credit cards and driver license


  • Mobile phone – If you like to listen to music or just carry your phone for safety. Make sure to bring it and a charger so you could use it when you need.
  • Healthy food. In a lot of cases, we are traveling to a marathon. So take with you some fresh fruits, nuts and other good food you like. It’s important not to eat something ‘new’ (and junk) a day or two before the race. Moreover, don’t try at the expo any ‘new’ drink or food. keep them to the future after the race.

  • Last but very important! Bring the face game and smile to each camera you see.

In Suitcase

You want to bring extra things that in case the suitcase won’t make it, you can still run.
  • Safety pins.
  • More healthy snacks for the weekend. A couple scoops of protein powder in a small sealed container.
  • Street clothes, work clothes, and comfortable shoes.
  • Another singlet and a short-sleeve or long-sleeve shirt for shakeout runs.
  • More shorts and tights for shakeout runs, as weather dictates.
  • An old T-shirt I can toss on race day.
  • Waterproof jacket.
  • A head lamp (just in case).
  • A plastic bag for wet, dirty clothes.
  • Compression tights and socks to wear on the flight home.


  1. Race confirmation.
  2. Hotel confirmation.
  3. Plane Tickets.
  4. Course Map.
  5. Directions to race and number pick-up.
  6. Anti-chafing lotion.
  7. Hat.
  8. Sunscreen.
  9. Lip balm with sunscreen.
  10. Hat or visor.
  11. Safety pins.
  12. Water bottle for the flight.
  13. Healthy, carbohydrate-laden snacks for the flight.
  14. Extra cash / credit cards.
  15. Street clothes and shoes.
  16. Ear plugs.
  17. Travel alarm.
  18. Food you usually eat for breakfast before running.


  1. Watch / GPS.
  2. Race shoes + socks and/or compression socks.
  3. Singlet / short-sleeve or long-sleeve shirt for race.
  4. Shorts / tights for race.
  5. Old sweatshirt or T-shirt you can toss after a few miles.
  6. Gels or sports drink if you’ve been training with them
  7. Energy bars if you’ll be standing around for several hours before the race. It’s popular in all big marathons that are point to point and put you in the starting line hours before the time.
  8. Sunglasses
  9. Gloves – Depend on the weather.

You can see this app (and others) in action over here.

Good luck!


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