Ragnar Essentials: The Ultimate Packing List

It’s Reebok Ragnar Relay week, and it’s time to prepare yourself for the unforgettable journey that lies ahead. Give up on the idea of sleep. Get excited to run your heart out. Look forward to slap happy, hilarious and meaningful conversations at 4 a.m. And last but not least, pack like a Ragnar Relay PRO to maximize your experience:


Safety should always come first, but it’s especially true at a Ragnar Relay. It’s not only important to us, but it is required that you have the proper safety gear:

Nathan reflective vests for Ragnar

  • Headlamp (required – 2 per van) – You can share headlamps with your van-mates, but we suggest having your own because they get sweaty and fit differently on everyone. The new Nathan Nebula and Halo Fire headlamps are the first headlamps ever designed specifically for runners and feature:
    • Run-Right Light™ combination of Spotlight & Floodlight
    • RunWave™ technology to adjust settings touch-free
    • Auto-Strobe™ communicates runner’s presence to drivers
    • Check them out and see the difference!
  • Taillight (required – 2 per van) – Nathan Sports offers the “StrobeLight” in 4 different colors.
  • Hand Flash light – Not required, but awesome.


  • In case of emergency (ICE) contacts for each runner


Running a Ragnar Relay is much different than your typical 10K or half marathon. You’ll be running three, or more times within a 24 hour period so the clothing you pack and wear is even more important to your overall experience:

  • Sweat Vac Team shirts – Custom Ragnar team tee-shirts, visors and tech-tees are fun to have during the race and will help commemorate your accomplishment when it’s all over. Just think about all of the Ragnar nostalgia you’ll have when you see your team shirt after the race is over.

SweatVac shirt at Ragnar

  • Costumes/ Accessories – Because everyone loves chasing superwoman or a man in a tutu.

costumes at Ragnar Relay

  • Three running ensembles (six for ultra-teams):
    • Shirt or tank top
    • Running shorts and compression shorts
    • Socks
    • Sports Bra/Underwear
  • Running shoes 

Reebok running shoes

  • Light jacket (Rain layer)
  • Warm hoodie or jacket – Depending on your event, you also might consider gloves and a ski hat.
  • CEP Compression socks or sleeves – Great for recovery on the go and hanging out in the van after a long run
  • Running Hat – Keep the sun off your face.
  • Sun Glasses
  • Sweatpants and cozy clothes for the van
  • Flip flops – It will feel nice to air out your feet. Consider wiping your feet off with ShowerPills to help avoid getting blisters and keep them from stinking up the entire van.
  • Ragnar Bondi Band – Keep the sweat off of your face with a bold fashion statement (not just for women!).

bondi band


You don’t need to overdo it on bringing things like magazines, books, card games and everything you can think of on your Ragnar adventure. You’ll find that time will fly by between the running, navigating, getting food, exploring local landmarks and bonding with your team. Here are a few items to consider:

  • Car compatible phone charger
  • Video Camera/ GoPro – Enter the Find Your Inner Wild Video Contest. – $3,200+ in prizes up for grabs!
  • Cowbells/ Noise Makers
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen- Thinksport Sunscreen is made for athletes and safe for your skin.
  • Running Belt – Hold your phone, money, keys, etc. with the FlipBelt.
  • Headphones like JayBird Wireless headphones
  • GPS Running Watch – Track your miles, average pace and heart rate right from your watch.
  • Jaybird Rein Activity Tracker – Track your activity, and (lack of) sleep throughout the 200ish mile relay.
  • Sleeping bag/ Pillow/ Blanket (optional)

Van Items

  • Van decorating supplies
    • Markers
    • Team Van Magnets
    • LED lights for inside/outside of van
    • Anything that will make your van stand out but not litter the course

decorated vans at Ragnar

  • Cooler
  • Ice
  • Trash and Recycling Liners (Pick them up at the start line and Exchange 6)
  • First Aid Kit
  • Ragnar Race Bible (print 1 per van OR save the race bible on your mobile device)
  • Pace Calculator


  • ShowerPills – a better alternative to baby wipes!
  • Deodorant
  • Sunblock/ Lip Balm
  • Bobby pins/ hair ties/ BondiBand
  • Comb/brush
  • Antichafe powder or cream
  • Toothbrush/ Toothpaste
  • Extra roll of toilet paper


  • Water – We suggest you bring a big cooler of water and fill up reusable water bottles instead of using bottled water to minimize waste.
  • Nuun Electrolyte Tablets – Pop these tasty, portable, electrolyte tabs is your water to keep you hydrated. Nuun tabs deliver a fast-absorbing electrolyte blend without the sugar or waste of bottled sport drinks.

nuun at Ragnar

Pack up your bag, hit the road, and leave the world behind! If you have any additional packing tips or items you like to pack during a Ragnar Relay, leave a comment below!

Team finish at Ragnar

About Rebecca Babicz

Rebecca Babicz is the Sr. Brand Manager at Ragnar. She enjoys #skiing, #running, #biking and sees the world through social media goggles. It is her personal goal in life to find the world's best fish tacos. Follow her on Instagram: @Bebabz

26 Responses to Ragnar Essentials: The Ultimate Packing List

  1. Michael A Harvey says:

    Is the cost of the vans, included in the registration? Or, is it a separate fee. How do you go about renting the van’s?

  2. JoAnn Franklin says:

    I would include baby wipes to the list of items to bring since we may not get to shower.

    • Good point. ShowerPills work just like baby wipes, but are better, and you only need one! Check them out here: https://showerpill.com/

    • Kim says:

      She’s pushing the shower pills! She just didnt explain it that well so you can understand they are the same thing as baby wipes, only better because you only use one.

      • Lisa says:

        From our relay experience, baby wipes are better. The Shower Pill is one thick sheet that you have to carefully fold and refold so that a fresh surface is available for each part of your body. If you are a big person, it doesn’t really make it, and we still ended up smelling a bit after finishing. We “practiced” with these before our relay, but decided to go with baby wipes. They are cheaper, more moist, and you have much greater surface area to clean for the same space and weight of product. Get a huge package of baby wipes and then distribute several sheets into individual ziplocs before the race, then use the ziploc to capture and toss the used wipes, so even if you are not near a trashcan, you can still zip away the offending odors.

  3. Cathy says:

    Pack your clothes in zip lock bags. Then when you put them back in after a run the van doesn’t smell as bad!

  4. Rachel Mackey says:

    Place a Bounce dryer sheet inside each bag containing your running clothes to help alleviate the smell after running.

    • Anna says:

      Be careful if anyone in your van has breathing issues/perfume sensitivities. I cannot use scented dryer sheets and being stuck in a van with them (yes even in a ziplock) would be miserable. Same goes for perfume/body spray/febreeze. Anything aerosol and scented. Other things bother me as well but I can’t as everyone to stay away from everything…

      • Kim says:

        I agree. I dont want to smell someone else’s perfumey stuff. Besides, febreeze and dryer sheets are toxic.

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  6. Gephry Taton says:

    Throwing a fully topped-off external charger in your bag can be a lifesaver when it seems like everyone in the van needs to use the car charger.

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  8. That is me in the right of the very last picture, and I was having an amazing and super fun run in Napa. If you have a chance to run a relay with Ragnar, go for it. It is fantastic.

    • Amanda Hill says:

      Hi John! I just watched the movie Fat to Finish Line in Netflix last week. When I saw your comment, I was like “I know that guy!” It was such a great documentary. You guys did such a great job and are so inspirational. I told my team about the show and told them to watch it. I’m signed up for the Ragnar Luckenbach!

  9. Very nice post! The tips are great. I agree with JoAnn Franklin that is a good idea to have baby wipes:)

  10. Judy Bowen says:

    Fantastic list! My sister was a part of ragnar adventure last year. She told me that it was amazing experience. I am going to send her your post! Thank you for sharing it! Best regards!

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  12. Tammy says:

    I like to have bug spray. Especially when I run at night I get bit up on my legs pretty bad. I also like to have packets of peanut butter that you purchase in the store. Some of the small packets also have peanut butter mixed with honey. I bring mini bagels and Schmeer mine for little snacks in between.

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  16. Mark says:

    Is there an actual list of approved safety vests or examples. IE: People have the NoxTracer gear but is it not approved?

    • Nicole Ginley-Hidinger says:

      Hi Mark- you can see the examples on the last page of the Race Bible for any road race.

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