Running a 5K is no easy feat so kudos to you for getting it done. Everyone has to start with their first and if that’s you, it pays to be prepared when the big day comes. Even if you’re a 5K pro, you can learn something here too. There are some things that you should never run without. Whether it’s for practical reasons or convenience, make sure your 5K bag has these important items so that you can get the most out of your race. Happy running!
Many 5K events have advertisers and food vendors that come out to hawk their wares. There’s nothing worse than wanting to refuel with a tasty breakfast burrito, but not having any money on you. Tuck some cash into your 5K bag and you’ll be prepared for anything, whether it’s a t-shirt to commemorate your achievement or a snack to get you through until lunchtime.
Most of the time you’re going to have to wait until you get home to shower after running a 5K. Toss a packet of wipes into your bag and you can wipe down your face, neck, between your breasts and your armpits so that you feel a bit fresher, even if it’s going to be a little while until you can suds up for real.
If you run a 5K, you can pretty much assume that your feet will sweat inside your running shoes. Pack a clean pair of socks and another pair of shoes or some flip flops in your bag so that you can take off the damp, icky shoes and socks and refresh with a clean pair. This helps get nasty bacteria away from your feet and you wouldn’t believe how good it feels to put on a fresh pair of shoes after a run.
Hanging out in your sweaty workout wear can lead to breakouts and irritation on your skin. It’s always best to get them off as soon as possible. Some 5K events have makeshift showers, but if yours doesn’t, you can wiggle into clean clothes in the back of your car or behind some trees. That way you keep your skin healthy and you don’t have to feel sweaty until you get home.
If you do decide to brave the showers at a 5K, if they have one, having a towel makes it easy to dry off before you put on your clean clothes. If not, you can at least wipe of all the sweat pouring down your body after you run your race.
Think about how gross your shoes, socks and running clothes are after you run a 5K. They’re sweaty and dirty, right? Don’t just stick them in your bag because then all that icky stuff gets on the inside of your bag. Stuff your dirty stuff into a couple of garbage bags to keep it clean.
You’re going to be thirsty and hungry after you run a 5K so it makes sense to toss something to eat and drink into your bag. A tall glass of water is a must to help you rehydrate after a run. A granola bar, apple, string cheese or nuts make for a delicious recovery snack.
How many 5K events have you run? What other things would you never be caught without?
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