For some people going on holiday is the time to leave the running shoes behind, and enjoy a week off. For others it provides a welcome change of scenery and different perspective, whilst maintaining or improving their fitness. And, if you want to make running the focus of your holiday there are even special camps set up for running! Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of running whilst away…
1 Safety First
Always carry a phone, your hotel address and enough money for a cab home. A map would also be helpful. Be sensible about where, and when, you run particularly if you are female.
2 Planning your route
Finding a safe enjoyable route to run in a foreign city or country can be a challenge. Website’s such as mapmyrun - or www.runningfreeonline.com - have made it a lot easier by providing running routes all over the world, and covering a wide range of distances. If that doesn’t help the easiest option is an out and back run. Make sure you remember any landmarks relevant to where you turn left or right. After you have made a turn, look behind you and see what it looks like the other way around. When you’re running back in the other direction, it can look quite different!
3 Use local knowledge
Many places will have a local running club, contact them in advance and organise to join them on one of their regular runs.
It’s a great way to see the area and meet some locals.
4 Make the most of your environment
Use the environment around you to maximum advantage. If you are by the beach use the soft sand to develop leg strength, technique and fitness. If there’s not a flat bit of ground in sight then try some hill repeats. If you have access to trails get off the road and discover the joys of trail running. If you are city bound use your run as a means of finding a great spot for that evening walk with your partner.
5 Plan a race
Racing in a foreign destination is a great way to both explore the sights and meet like-minded people. Many people plan a holiday around a marathon but the problem is you need to conserve your legs before the race and you are too tired after the race to go sightseeing. Instead, try entering a shorter race and use it as a chance to get a good workout whilst exploring somewhere different.
6 Indoors vs Outdoors
As many of us look to somewhere hot and sunny for our holidays the heat may have a big affect on our runs. If you aren’t keen getting up early on your holidays to avoid the summer sun then many hotels have treadmills which although not the most exciting way to run, do allow you to run in a cool environment.
Instead of running a steady pace on the treadmill try mixing up some high intensity efforts with easy recovery periods, it makes the time go a lot quicker and does wonders for your fitness – and gives you more time to lounge about, guilt-free, on the sunbed!
7 Running Holidays
For those keen to take their running to the next level and have a holiday at the same time there are several destinations such as Club la Santa in Lanzarote (www.clublasanta.co.uk) that provide all the facilities you need plus access to top coaches, masseurs, nutritionists etc. Come back from your holiday fitter than ever before with expert advice on how to improve your running.
8 Be Flexible
Don’t become trapped into thinking you have to get your 10- mile run in, and if not, then it’s not worth doing. Holidays are a time to enjoy other things as well, so if you can only fit in five miles then that’s better than nothing.
9 Cross Train
If you want to take some time off running, take advantage of any activities on offer to help maintain your fitness. Mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, swimming, surfing and anything else active will help keep your fitness levels up as well as making your holiday great fun!
Andy DuBois Andy is an elite ultramarathon runner and a qualified Personal Trainer and Exercise Coach
www.andydubois.blogspot.com - email@example.com