If you can’t travel with just a carry-on, well, I hate to break it to you, but we can’t be travel buddies. There, I said it. We can fly on the same plane. To the same destination. Even stay at the same hotel. But, I will not wait for your bag to come along on the little carousel. Last in line. At midnight. I’m already in the car on my way home. Goodbye and good luck.
I don’t know when my aversion to checked luggage began, but I also can’t actually remember checking bags so…somewhere in that time frame. I don’t want to wait for a bag that may or may not have made it on the flight or might be thrown aggressively by the ground crew (while you watch and gasp from your window seat tsk, tsk). So, here I am. Traveling with just my carry on for as long as I can remember.
Some of you are reading this and laughing. How can one travel for a long weekend without 6 pairs of shoes, 2 different curling irons, 4 handbags, 6 pairs of pants, 3 books you won’t read on the plane, and a partridge in a pear tree?! Well. Some of you can’t. 😂 It’s okay. But for the rest of you, there’s hope! We have a few trips coming up over the next few months that will overlap with half marathon training. If you workout on vacation, you know the struggle. By the time you pack your gym clothes and clunky athletic shoes, there’s no room for the rest of your regular clothes, shoes, and certainly not your travel-sized liquids. That’s all well and good if you’re going on a vacation and plan to wear athleisure/hike/bike whatever adventures you do for the entire vacation. But for the rest of us, that’s just not going to work.
When I started packing for Tahoe and Napa, I realized I needed to do a minimum of 2 runs while on vacation. I automatically decided that my airport travel attire would have to include my running shoes and a denim jacket since the weather looked a bit chilly at night. Yes, I’m as stylish as you’re imagining right now. I cannot tell you how many hours I have spent on Pinterest trying to pare down the best “essentials” for packing a carry-on. While I absolutely have that concept down for long weekend trips, I did have to manage to fit 7 days worth of casual AND running clothes in this time. Challenge accepted.
I wanted to have enough options that ranged from casual to dressy casual, go for a few hikes, and of course squeeze in a few runs. Dresses and jumpsuits were lifesavers for this trip (hello winery tours and other trendy adventures) and I tend to ALWAYS dress in mostly neutrals. This makes outfit combos/accessories/shoes the easiest piece of packing. It all matches. Please hold, I’m giving myself a high-five for success.
I roll my clothes to reduce wrinkles and cram as much into the tiny space as possible. I also live in a small town with an airport so we have those little commuter planes. I usually pack a canvas weekender bag so it can be squished/contorted as much as possible in overhead bins or under the seat. In addition to my running shoes and denim jacket I ended up packing 2 pairs of shorts, 3 tops that can be dressed up or down, 1 jumpsuit, 2 dresses, 3 pairs of running shorts, 1 pair of leggings, 3 run tanks, 1 t-shirt, 2 pairs of sandals, and a swimsuit. I forgot my partridge in a pear tree. Oops. I was fortunate to have a washer/dryer during the first half of the trip so I washed my run clothes but you can always grab a grocery bag for dirty clothes if you don’t have a way to wash them. And always, always, pack some dryer sheets to keep your clothes fresh during your trip.
The only thing I could not fit in my allotted liquids see through almost won’t zip bag was dry shampoo. I even bought it specifically for this trip in travel size. Shucks. Lucky for you, and my plane mates, I did sacrifice that space for deodorant. You’re welcome.