Following on from last week’s post on Tough Mudder, I thought I’d write about all the things I took with me for the day. This is partly because I love watching these videos on YouTube (mainly because I’m nosey), but also because before my first mudrun, I searched high and low for this kind of information, and couldn’t seem to find it anywhere. I relied on my friends to tell me what to take, so hopefully this will benefit somebody out there and I’ll’ve done my good deed for the week. I also have a severe problem with over-packing, so maybe I’ll use this as a reference for my next race.
Let’s start with my bag.
Obviously you’re going to need something to carry all your junk in. Whilst it might be easy to pick the biggest bag you can, this will more than likely mean that you’re going to fill it with stuff you don’t need. I love my Reebok gym bag, purely because it’s big enough to fit in my essentials without allowing me to fill it with crap.
A change of clothes (and underwear!).
Again, another obvious point, because aside from the fact that you’ll be sweaty, your current attire will also be absolutely caked in mud and/or sheep shit. A point to remember here is not to pack anything too tight: because you’ll be damp, skinny jeans are not a good idea. Go for something oldish, that’s easy to pull on and you feel comfy in. Trust me, you won’t give two hoots about how attractive you look by the end of the race.
This would usually be flip-flops for me, but I chucked my last pair away after coming home from holiday and forgot to buy some more (typical). I opted for a beaten pair of Vans, but again, just pick something comfy and that’s easy to slip on.
Baby/face/massive festival wipe things.
As I’ve mentioned, you’re gonna be covered in mud. No matter how hard you try on site, you’re going to have to wait for the ‘two showers and a bath’ combo until you feel fully clean again (and even then I still found some mud in my ear, lovely). However, some baby wipes to clean your hands and wash away a bit of the grime is always nice. I’m not sure of the technical name for them, but a member of our team brought what was basically a massive, towel-sized baby wipe, which I thought was a great idea.
Though you may think this is for wiping away the dirt, it also doubles up to protect your modesty. On the first two mudruns I completed, we had a pretty large team, so we hired a coach to take us. After the race, we weren’t allowed to get back on the bus until we were clean-ish, so had to get changed at the side of it. To keep your dignity in tact and stop you flashing the rest of your team/random passers by, a towel is essential, and this year I took my new lightweight one, which saved space in my bag and was much easier to manoeuvre under.
Rolls and rolls of bin liners.
No bag would be complete without them. You can clearly use them to bung your dirty clothes in, but they can also be used to cover the seats or footwells of your car, minimising on clean up time once more.
Because by Christ you’re going to be thirsty by the end of all that running.
Snack/protein bar (or whatever the hell you want to eat, actually).
My friend can’t eat on the day of the race or the day after. I, on the other hand, turn into a ravenous little piggy, so I need something in me ASAP otherwise the hanger draws in dangerously quickly.
Again, this can be used for post-race scran (forever hungry), but you may also want to purchase merchandise or pay for parking etc.
Paracetamol/joint pain tablets.
Unfortunately, injuries happen, sometimes when you haven’t even gone anywhere and manage to twist your ankle in the warm-up ring (well done, Sophie). If you’re clumsy like me, it might be useful to take some tablets, just in case.
General admin type things.
This is something I nearly forgot, so it was a good job I was reminded the day before. You must remember to bring your event ticket, waiver form and ID to the course, because otherwise you’re going to have a hard time getting in. You can download most tickets into your Apple wallet so you’re not carting a million bit of paper around with you, which is really useful. Similarly, a photo of your ID is usually fine.
I could not do a race without these! Although they get annoying during obstacles that involve monkey bars and the like, a pair of builders gloves really help you to grip onto ropes and get over fences. They save your hands from getting cut and keep them clean(ish) too, so I highly recommend heading to Wilkos and picking a pair up before you go.
After you’ve done your very best to baby wipe your hands, there’ll still be loads of nasties on them. Hand sanitising them before you touch your phone/any food is a must.
A bottle/can of coke.
I don’t often drink full-fat pop, but this is a really useful one for after you’ve finished a mud race. Not only do you get a quick hit of sugar, it’s also really good at killing any germs you may’ve picked up along the way (like when you accidentally swallow a mouthful of crap-filled water, mmm). Halfway through the race, my friend pointed out that coke can be used to clean your jewellery, so even though I don’t encourage you to drink it all the time, it must be bloody good at keeping post-race bugs at bay.
And that’s that. Again, this will hopefully help somebody out there, so if you have any of your own suggestions then please feel free to leave them in the comments down below!
If you’re taking part in a race then good luck: you’ll love it!