NYC Marathon Pre-Race Packing

Pre-race anxiety is a marathoner’s right, and I am experiencing it in a new and different way right now.  I have run 10 marathons before, but only once did I fly to the event.  I was flying from a cold climate (Boston in February) to a temperate climate (Austin in February), so I was fairly certain I’d be running in warmer weather than what I was used to.

This time, I am leaving Friday (tomorrow!!) morning, returning Monday night.  The weather forecast has highest highs around 55 and lowest lows around 36.  First of all, these numbers mean NOTHING to me, as I have not felt anything as cool as 50 since last spring….  I can’t even imagine what 50 feels like, much less 40 or 36.

I also need to pack regular clothes, which includes an outfit to go to a Broadway show as well as my super cozy wear-in-public-appropriate loungewear for the trip home.  I have a pair of somewhat fashionable shoes that has to get in the suitcase, too. And I’m planning on carrying on my bag, so as to avoid those nasty checked bag fees.

Of course, I also need a full compliment of running attire, given that some models show race day to be dry with temps ranging from 38-45 and some models show race day to have snow (no, dear God, no) and some models show race day to be 40 and rainy (definitely not ideal, either).  All models show Sunday to be very windy– 20-25mph winds with gusts up to 35-40mph.  My race day outfit will be my Texas flag running shorts and some combination of these running bras and tops, depending on the weather.  I’m sure I’ll wear gloves and my running hat, at least until I’m off the Verranzano-Narrows Bridge.


The race time temps aren’t so important for the race itself, but they will affect my pre-race body.  I catch the Staten Island Ferry at 7:30am, but I don’t start the race until 10:05am.  What am I doing for those hours in between?  Sitting around soggy Ft. Wadsworth in the athletes’ village, trying to cast off more nervous energy than I absorb.  I’ll also be trying to keep warm.

I went to Savers yesterday to buy a fleece jacket and sweatpants that I will wear over my racing clothes (whatever they happen to be….) and then toss at the start line.  Those will go over an old Balance Personal Fitness Training  t-shirt and a pair of capris I made myself.  I also bought long socks and cut out the toes to make arm warmers.  I have old gloves that I will wear over my running gloves. And a knit hat. And I have my running hat, should it be on the colder end of temps.  And a baseball-cap style hat in case it rains. And sunglasses.  I’m taking an old pair of running shoes and two pair of old socks to wear to the athletes’ village. Of course there will be Body Glide, too.  Consider yourself lucky if you don’t know what it’s for.  There’s also a red transparent poncho to go on top of everything and a small plastic sheet to sit on in case it’s muddy or wet around the start corrals.


This is why I have anxiety, y’all.  I run because it’s easy.  It’s simple. Straightforward.

But this race prep thing?  It involves trying to predict the future, and I’m not good at that.

In the end, though, I’ve got these things in my suitcase, and they’re really all I need.


Everything else is details!


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