Packing for an Ironman is just like packing to go on holiday. You’ll remember the majority of stuff but if there’s one thing that you forget, you could be left on the sideline cheering on your mates. So make sure you’ve got everything with this handy list of ALL of the kit you’ll need.
There are two things that will help you keep on top of all of the stuff you’ll need for the Ironman.
- Pack well in advance to avoid the unnecessary stress of running around the night before the event trying to find everything.
- Breakdown your packing in terms of each leg of the race so you can be more focused with your packing.
- Casual clothes and shoes
- Gear — GPS watch, heart rate monitor, power meter, etc
- Pre-race snacks
- Comfortable footwear
- Scissors — to trim down your race number (to fit better / to be more aero)
You will need to do some research in advance to see what the water temperature will be like so you know what sort of kit you’ll likely need. Not all races are wetsuit-legal so you’ll also need to check that. It is best to bring a wetsuit with you just in case. Better to have it and not need it than the other way around.
Many athlete will also bring two pairs of swimming goggles — one tinted pair and one clear pair — for in case you are swimming towards the sun.
- Warm clothes for the wait at the start
- Trisuit or tri-shorts and a top
- 2 sets of goggles
- An old shirt or towel — to wipe dirt off your feet before you get on the bike
- Waterproof suncream
Before you even think about packing, make sure your bike is ready. If you can, take it to a shop to get a professional service and tune-up. You’ll want to take a small tool bag with you and I recommended that you get yourself a small seat bag so that you can have these tools when you’re out on the ride.
- Bike (obvs)
- Helmet — you won’t be allowed to compete without one
- Cycling shoes and socks
- Multiple water bottles
- Nutrition — gels, snacks, energy bars
- Seat bag with tool kit — multi-tool, inner tubes, tyre levers, CO2 cannisters, mini-pump, etc
- Foot pump
Packing for the run requires the least amount of effort. Seeing as you can always wear your running shoes and your hat or visor to save crucial bag space.
- Running shoes
- Hat or visor
- Nutrition belt — for your energy gels and snacks
- Vaseline, plasters, etc — for post race recovery and comfort