The Eternal Quest Of Staying Motivated To Run While On Vacation

My family and I have been in Florida for a week now.  In the next month I have quite a few races, which means I can’t take a week off with no running (plus it refreshes my sanity).  Here in Florida though it has been raining a lot of the time, plus humid, mosquitos, a husband who is working and a 3 year old still on west coast time which means the opportunities I have are limited.  I have ran twice on my sister-in-laws treadmill which is in her non-air conditioned garage.  It is kinda of like running in a Bikram yoga room, but other than dripping sweat it felt pretty good.  Tomorrow morning the weather is suppose to be clear and I am really hoping to get an awesome run in on the beach.

It is so easy to slack off while on vacation, which I’m not saying is a bad thing, but if you are training for a race you don’t want to fall backwards out of some training.  Here is how I like to keep myself motivated while on vacation:

  • Go into your vacation with a game plan- Before I left home I told myself that I would run 3 times during the week.  That is what I felt was doable, plus enough to keep me conditioned.
  • Bring everything you need so you have no excuses- I always travel with my shoes, socks, running attire, Garmin, earbuds and even my Nuun to stay hydrated.  Than I don’t fall into the pitfall of “Oh gee, I forgot my socks I guess I won’t run.” haha
  • If you are traveling somewhere you have never been do some research about good and SAFE running areas.  If you don’t feel comfortable running outside see if where you are staying has a gym and treadmill.  If not, a lot of gyms will offer a “drop in” rate for you just to come use their facilities for a day.  While this option can be pricey (I usually pay $10-$15 for this) if you only need to do it once of twice it is totally worth it in my opinion.  It is safe, clean, air conditioned and you can use the locker rooms to shower after if you need.
  • “Earn” that pina colada- On vacation I typically don’t eat quite as healthy as I normally would, but running a couple extra miles makes me feel a little less guilty about it 🙂
  • Talk to your spouse ahead of time about the time you want to go run so you are both on the same page.  I try to go before my daughter wakes up or I help my husband plan an activity with my daughter.  This way they aren’t just waiting around for me to finish and we can all enjoy our time.  The last time I ran on the beach I had bought a cheap little set of sand toys for $2.99 at a local drugstore and my husband and 3 year old built a sandcastle while mommy got her run in.  Well worth the $2.99!

Many resorts will have maps they can give you and can even tell you the distance of a run on their property.  Walt Disney World has great information of on property runs.  Don’t be afraid to ask the concierge or front desk any questions about where to run, safety, distance, etc.  I am willing to bet you wouldn’t be the first person to ask them.

Remember to enjoy it since you are on vacation!  Maybe run “blind” (no Garmin) and just run until you don’t feel like running anymore.  Maybe treat yourself to a new cute run skirt for the occasion to break out on vacation.  You buy new bathing suits for vacations, why not a treat for running right?

We head home Saturday and the following weekend I have the Wharf to Wharf from Santa Cruz to Capitola, CA and the weekend after is the Giant Half Marathon in San Francisco.  Very excited to have some fun races in the near future.

How do you stay fit and motivated while on vacation?