When you’re out walking long distances—for example, all that training you’re doing to walk 20 miles a day on the Susan G. Komen 3-Day®–you want to make sure you’re equipped with whatever you might need along the way. Most Komen 3-Day walkers arm themselves for those long stretches by carrying a waist pack to hold the items they want to keep close by. What you carry in your pack is completely up to you, and chances are the contents will change depending on how far your 3-Day® training walk is taking you.
But to give you some idea of what you might want to include in your waist pack, we asked a few of our 3-Day coaches, who are also walkers, to share what goes in their packs.
Ann, the local events coach for Michigan, takes the minimalist approach to her walking goodies: “I carry a water bottle, my phone, and a couple bucks for fun treats that might show up along the route.”
Jennifer, the participant support coach for Michigan, adds a little bit more to her list of must-haves: “I carry my phone, tissues, Chapstick and sunscreen. I also have mints, because Gatorade mouth is nasty. I’ll carry sunglasses (if they aren’t already on my face), Handi-Wipes, which I use to clean my hands and to wipe my feet at lunch when I change my socks, and of course, extra socks.”
The other 3-Day coaches I asked had more robust lists. Alyssa, my 3-Day social media cohort (who walked her first 3-Day in San Diego last year) shared her list:
- Tissues – for a runny nose and runny eyes, which may afflict you at any point
- iPhone – fully charged and in airplane mode, of course.
- Pink bracelet – because everybody likes to wear pink.
- Sunscreen – because reapplication is so important!
- Small packet of trail mix – for a heart healthy boost if I’m hungry but have eaten too many grahamwiches
- Headband – to keep fly-aways out of my eyes when wind acts up
- Fresh pair of socks – because this is the best idea ever. Change into them at lunch and rejoice.
- Chapstick – to keep those plump puckers hydrated
- Gum – Chewing gum while going up a hill just makes it better.
- Large capacity, wide mouth water bottle – so crew can easily fill it with ice and sports drink
- 3-Day Flair – a badge of pride, and to remember why I’m walking.
Gayla, our Dallas/Fort Worth local events coach, leads or joins training walks throughout the year and has her fanny pack (which she bought in 2005 and has trained with for 10 years) contents down to a science:
- 2 – 20 oz. water bottles with wide openings for ice
- Soothing Care Chafing Relief Powder-Gel by Monistat (I don’t walk anywhere without this gel. I prefer this over the “stick-style” anti-chafing products.)
- Spark energy drink mix
- Pen (for autographs, ha!)
- Phone charger & plug
- Lip balm
- Fundraising business cards
- Clean, dry socks in a Ziploc bag to swap sweaty socks mid-day
- Driver’s license
- Mints or gum
- A little extra room in my pack for all the stuff I seem to collect on the route at the cheer stations.
Seattle participant support coach Paula, who, with 15 events under her belt has walked more times than any other coach, totes quite the impressive array of goodies in her pack:
- A copy of my credential with my cell number, so my pack will find its way back to me if I lose it!
- My driver’s license/ID and my debit card and/or cash for those must-have 3-Day souvenirs or a Starbucks along the route! (This is in the most secure spot in my pack.)
- Wet wipes
- Hand sanitizer (clips on to my pack)
- Pain relief meds (Tylenol/Advil/Aleve)
- Chapstick with SPF
- Hairbrush, ponytail rubber band
- My 3-Day bub
- Rain poncho
- Large trash back to sit on if the ground is wet at lunch
- Extra pair of socks in a Ziploc bag (bag will hold dirty socks after lunch)
- Body Glide
- Blister kit – bandages, moleskin, small scissors
- Sticky notes and a permanent marker pen (to jot down names/emails of new friends)
- A soft “squeeze” ball (mine is actually pink ribbon shaped) which is great to help circulation in your hands and keeps your fingers from swelling from all that arm swinging! J
- Any stickers or items I may want to pass out to people along the route. I have some cool pink ribbon temporary tattoos that are a big hit with kids and adults alike!
- For training, it’s all of the above, plus sports drink powder for hydration and snack bars for some carbs.
What goes in your pack?