We are just 9 days away from embarking on the adventure of a lifetime with Team Every Mother Counts: Hood to Coast! From the Oiselle roster JJ, KMet, Sally, Lesko and Christy will be running. Not to miss any of the fun Kerr and Bob will be driving vans. Mac will, sadly, be sitting out this HTC as she ramps up for the Chicago Marathon. As the date nears we tapped Relay-Pro Robyn Hefner for her Must-Haves Packing List for Hood to Coast. Check it out and maybe we'll see you out there!

A stocked van is a happy van in relay land.

  • 2 copies of the handbook (one will disappear in the first 5 minutes)
  • 2 sets of keys and a plan on where to keep the keys
  • Chargers for phone etc
  • Anti bacterial gel
  • Garbage bag
  • Cooler
  • Water
  • Washable car markers - check off each leg after you complete!
  • And don’t leave the lights on in the van… good way to get dead battery.


You won't get much, but be ready to steal a few minutes here and there when you can.

  • Sleeping bag or blanket- if you plan on getting out of the van to sleep in the field (designated sleeping area) I recommend a sleeping bag and ground tarp for the wet grass.  Some people like to bring a small foam mattress
  • Pillow (nice so you can doze off while driving to the next exchange)
  • Eye mask
  • Earplugs or headphones for van napping

When you're not running you're recovering on the move. Be sure to bring clothes for that! And best way to pack, hands down, is in large zip lock bags labeled Leg #1, #2, #3 in Sharpie. Trust me when you're rooting around for your next leg in the dark cramped van you'l be happy you did.

  • 3 changes of running clothes (complete change! Undies & socks included) Pack these in large zip lock bags so they are 1) easy to find and 2) easy to put your awesome sweating running clothes in when done.  Recommended:  I often bring one extra change of running clothes because a girl has to have options… but I’m also high maintenance
  • 2 pairs of running shoes and a pair of flip flops or sandals so your feet can breath- I recommend 2 pairs of running shoes because at night if you’re not wearing sandals it’s nice to walk around in the ones you are not racing in
  • Hat/visor/gloves/sunglasses
  • Garmin and charger (since your miles will not be marked)
  • Reflective Vest (it’s sort of gross to have to share these…)
  • Your own head lamp (check your batteries)… not only for running but you’ll want your own unless you enjoy wandering around in the dark
  • Van clothes- Long sleeves, shorts, long tights, jacket, sweats etc… it gets COLD at night!
  • Compression sleeves are nice in between legs
  • Finally if you are staying the night at the finish I usually pack a smaller bag for once I get to the beach that I don’t have to access during the race.  It can stay tucked under a bench and out of the way during the race.


If you are a shower-every-day type of animal, get ready to let go of your normal 'clean' standards. This is van life, baby. BUT that doesn't mean you can't stay somewhat clean

  • Tooth brush and toothpaste- way better than a shower
  • Deodorant
  • Baby wipes or ShowerPill
  • Small towel

Food is personal but I like to bring easy carbs and high calorie proteins that are easy to digest.  Here’s a list of food that’s worked for me:

  • Potato chips (the saltier the better)
  • Rice crackers
  • Quinoa crackers
  • Raisin bread
  • Cookies (chocolate chip… oatmeal ect)
  • Fruit (bananas, peaches…)
  • Peanut butter
  • Hummus (if you have a cooler)
  • Lunch meat (if you have a cooler)
  • Beef jerky
  • Pretzels
  • Fruit roll-ups
  • Nuun
  • Ensure (for after each leg)

** Beware of gels or energy drinks with lots of sugar, these can be okay for one leg but can be trouble in the middle of the night.  The key is getting calories in!



  • Sunscreen and chapstick with sunscreen (every year I forget the chapstick and burn my lips
  • Camera/phone & chargers
  • Mylanta- will be your best friend for the night legs


August 13, 2013 — Atsuko Tamara

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