What To Bring To A Marathon

As someone who has participated in several marathons, I know firsthand how important it is to come prepared with the right gear and essentials. Whether you’re a seasoned marathon runner or a first-timer, having the right items can make all the difference in your race day experience. In this article, I’ll share my personal recommendations on what to bring to a marathon.

1. Running Shoes

One of the most important items to bring to a marathon is a reliable pair of running shoes. It’s crucial to choose a pair that fits well and provides adequate support for your feet. I recommend visiting a specialty running store to get properly fitted for shoes that suit your specific foot type and running style.

2. Moisture-Wicking Clothing

Marathons can be long and sweaty, so it’s essential to wear moisture-wicking clothing to help keep you dry and comfortable. Look for shirts and shorts made of breathable materials that will wick away sweat and prevent chafing. Don’t forget to pack extra socks to change into during the race if needed.

3. Hydration System

Staying hydrated during a marathon is crucial for maintaining energy and preventing dehydration. Consider bringing a hydration belt or handheld water bottle to easily access fluids during the race. Some runners also opt for a hydration pack or a water bladder that can be worn on the back.

4. Nutrition and Energy Gels

Long-distance running requires fueling your body properly. Pack energy gels, bars, or other easily digestible snacks to consume during the race. It’s essential to test these products during training runs to ensure they agree with your stomach and provide the energy boost you need.

5. Sunscreen and Hat

If you’re running a marathon in sunny conditions, it’s crucial to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Apply sunscreen with at least SPF 30 before the race and bring a cap or visor to shield your face from the sun. Don’t forget to reapply sunscreen throughout the race if it’s a long duration event.

6. Body Glide or Anti-Chafing Cream

Chafing can be a painful experience during a marathon, especially on areas where clothing rubs against the skin. To prevent chafing, apply body glide or anti-chafing cream to areas prone to irritation before the race. This will help reduce friction and keep your skin comfortable throughout the run.

7. Extra Clothes and Layers

After completing a marathon, you’ll likely be sweaty and in need of a change of clothes. Pack an extra set of clothes, including comfortable shoes, to change into after the race. Additionally, consider bringing layers such as a lightweight jacket or a blanket to keep warm in case of chilly weather.


Preparing for a marathon involves more than just training your body. It’s essential to gather the right gear and essentials to ensure a successful and enjoyable race day experience. From comfortable shoes to proper hydration and nutrition, each item plays a crucial role in your performance. So, make a checklist, gather your supplies, and get ready to conquer that marathon!