The Color Run is Coming Back to Chicago

I participated in The Color Run when it was in Chicago last June.  My team walked it, had a great time, and planned to do it again next year.

What we didn’t realize it that it’d be back before then.  The Color Run heads back to town October 14th.

While it will be here, we won’t make it this time. However, it has me thinking of what I’d do the same and do differently if I was headed to the upcoming one.


  • Be part of a team.  We had so much fun cheering each other on and laughing at how ridiculous we all looked after going through each color zone. We also made team shirts which got laughs from other people.
  • Put my cell phone and wallet in a ziplock bag. It kept everything safe and practically dust free.  I had to only deal with a little dust from the few pictures I took at the beginning. As I got more and more covered in the color dust, I just kept it in my bag.
  • Bring my fanny pack/hip bag/travel pouch/whatever you want to call it. I first bought this from Target’s travel section before I ran the Hot Chocolate 5k a few years ago. I feel more comfortable knowing my valuables are on my hip rather than on my back.  Even though it does bounce around a bit, if it is a short distance it really doesn’t bother me as well.
  • Bring bottled water. I rarely buy bottled water since we have a ton of travel bottles. This was more of a convenience factor and a “just in case” with the water station or after party.  I would have been fine since there was a station plus bottled water there at the end but not having to think of it ahead of time helped. It was also nice to have it for the way home.
  • Bring an extra shirt. Being able to clean up just a little bit was extremely helpful since I didn’t have color dust rubbing off on my arms or hands.
  • Put spray in conditioner in my hair.  I read in the site doc that if you put on spray conditioner, it will help keep the dust out of your hair.  I sprayed my hair so much it ended up a bit crunchy. It worked because the lighter parts of my hair (I’m a brunette but the sun lightens my hair a bit in front.) stayed lighter.
  • Wear a bandana around my neck. I passed through the color zones I was so glad I could cover my mouth.  While it wouldn’t hurt you, the dust didn’t taste good.  I only got stuck once where the angle of the throw got through.


  • Rethink my layers.  It was a cooler breezy June day and the run was right on the lake so I was able to wear layers. I had a wedding reception that evening so my goal was to keep warm but also not to end up fully covered in dust. I didn’t know if it would stain or not so I didn’t want to risk it. All that being said, it was way too bulky. Next time if I even need to layer, it will be more streamlined.
  • Modify the bandana on my head.  Last time I had it more so just tied at the back of my head with the free end tucked in. I’m not sure exactly what I’ll do but as long as a good portion of my head gets covered that will work.
  • Do more than just a shirt for our team. We had fun making our shirts but other than the name, they all looked different. I think it’d be fun, if we remember in time, to make them all look similar so from afar we definitely look like one team.  There were teams that really went all out for team gear – tutus; matching socks, shorts, or sunglasses; and costumes. I don’t know if we would go as far as full costumes but something smaller would be fun.  If I was every going to wear a tutu for a fun run, this would be a good match.
  • Bring a string backpack for my random stuff. I didn’t use the bag check for the last run and opted to just carry some stuff in a plastic bag. That was such a bad idea. After awhile I was ready to chuck it but that was where my extra shirt was and I needed it.
  • Bring face wipes/baby wipes.  We lucked out and were able to clean up in a fast food bathroom. Otherwise, we would have had rainbow faces the entire way home.  I’m planning to pick up a mini travel pack of wipes next time just in case.

It is looking like next year we will be walking it again. If I was running it, there might be slight changes in my lists but most would remain the same. Safe to say I’ll be using this post as a prep list in the future.


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