Packing for a Cross Country/Track Meet

With practices, school, homework, and a job it can be easy to forget items while packing for a meet.  There were many times that I packed my meet bag not long before I left and I ended up missing items. Here is a list of what I packed in my meet bags for high school and collegiate races:

Common items:

  • Duffle bag: This is needed to pack everything else that you need to bring to the meet. I usually pack too much so I like a larger duffle bag.  I recently got a pink under armor duffle bag which I love to take to meets.
  • Uniform
  • Warm ups
  • Sports bra(s): An extra is always great in case a friend needs one or it is raining and you want tot change out of your clothes.
  • Bandaids: I usually would use bandaids for blisters but if you fall during a cross country meet or during an event in track they would be helpful too.
  • Lots of extra socks: Especially if it is going to rain.
  • Snacks: Currently, I like to pack Ezekiel English muffins with peanut butter, larabars, apples, squeezable apple sauce. In high school I packed bagels with peanut butter, granola bars, and pretzels.
  • Energy gels: I would eat a package of Berry Sports Beans 30 minutes before many of my high school cross country and track races.
  • Extra rubber bands for your hair/headbands: I am always losing hair bands so I always make sure I have extra in my bag
  • Money: For snacks or t-shirts, I have so many t-shirts from all of the cross country meets
  • Spikes (the shoes and the metal spikes): and your spike wrench
  • Watch
  • Waterbottle/Gatorade: Drinks are important so you don’t become dehydrated
  • Earbuds: I always listen to music on the bus ride to the meet to get myself mentally prepared
  • Phone


Hot weather:

  • Sunscreen: Even if it doesn’t seem like its going to be sunny, still pack it. Especially for outdoor track meets when you’re outside for hours.
  • Extra t-shirt/shorts: To change into after getting sweaty


Cold weather:

  • Extra sweatshirt/sweatpants: I always pack too many layers but if it gets colder I like to have lots of options.
  • Running headband/hat
  • Gloves
  • Blanket: Great for bus rides too!
  • Long sleeve top/leggings: These would be for racing in if it is very cold; or just to keep warm.


Items you may not have thought of: 

  • Electrolyte replacements: I started using Nuuns this summer and I love them! I really like the tri-berry flavor. They are packed full of electrolytes which is great after a tough race or long run.
  • Toilet paper: At many meets, the toilet paper would run out quickly so this would be needed.
  • Tissues
  • Pads/tampons
  • Hand sanitizer: Many times there were not sinks/hand sanitizer at the porta potty’s at meets
  • Umbrella: Pack this only if its supposed to rain
  • Chapstick: I take this everywhere I go!
  • Garbage bags: I always bring full sized garbage bags to put my duffle bag and my backpack into; this is especially helpful when its raining or muddy
  • Plastic bag (like a Walmart bag): This is important for when its muddy or raining, so you have somewhere to put your dirty spikes
  • A lunch/dinner: I notice that many girls do not pack a lunch or dinner to meets, they mostly just pack snacks. Many times I would get home from meets around 9:00 or 10:00pm and I can’t wait that long to eat dinner.  I like re-fueling with a meal pretty soon after my race so I always made sure I had something to meet.  In high school it was Subway subs and in college it is usually grilled chicken, whole wheat pasta, and some veggies.
  • Small roller: I love to bring my little roller to roll out my muscles before my meets!
  • Portable charger/charger cord: This is great for the bus/to keep in your duffle bag if your phone is running out of battery


This is a long list, but many of these items are small and depend on the weather.


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