The long-awaited vacation days are around the corner. But a few days away from home also means being away from your regular training routes, training buddies, and training routine.
But there is no need to sacrifice your running while you get some rest and relaxation. In fact, training at a new location can improve your performance and versatility, while you might meet some of the area’s friendliest runners.
Stay on track while you’re on the road, with these simple tips and strategies:
Plan your workouts
The biggest obstacle to training while on vacation is time. So, as you map out your sightseeing plans, you should also spend some time scheduling your workouts. Ideally, you’ll end up with a plan for how your training works into your vacation schedule.
If you’re training for a half or full marathon with one of Hal Higdon’s plans, you may want to plan your training so that your vacation corresponds with a “stepback” week.
Do your research before you leave
Plan and map your running routes, along with the top attractions and restaurants that you can’t miss at your vacation destination. Check out sites such as Map My Run or Trails.com for running routes at your vacation locale.
Make sure you have a few running routes in hand in case some routes you mapped aren’t suitable. By doing so, you won’t feel as concerned about running at your destination once you arrive.
Find a running buddy
Will you be traveling with others? Scope them out to see if there are any runners in the group. If you’re not lucky, you can still register at sites such as Athlinks and SeriousRunning or find a running club that you can join during your stay – RRCA is the place to start looking.
Running specialty shops are also a great resource for out-of-town runners. Not only can they provide useful information about running routes, but they may even offer a free group run that you can join.
Find a local gym
If you’re not 100% sure the running routes you found are safe, opt for the treadmill. Most larger hotels have a gym on site. But if the one you’re staying at doesn’t, try to find one locally where you can work out. Some gyms offer day guest passes or an inexpensive 30-day membership that will allow you to keep your training on track.
Enter a race
Entering a race is a great way to see the sights and guarantee that you’ll run at least once during your stay. Search on sites such as runnersworld.com’s Race Finder to see if there’s a race during the time you’ll be staying at your destination.
Take advantage of cross-training
When you’re on vacation, you may end up doing activities that aren’t part of your usual exercise routine, but that can be great substitute for your run. Is there a great hike or a bike ride you can take? Can you go kayaking, surfing or swimming? Don’t feel pressured to run every day and do one of those cross-training activities, instead.
If you end up not having the time to run while on vacation, don’t beat yourself up over it. Enjoy the relaxing days! Your body and your mind will thank you!