When away on vacation, going for a run may seem like too much effort. Where is there to run? Who will run with me? What if I get lost? There are a lot of variables when running in an area that you’re not familiar with. However, if you do the research, and have the motivation to lace up your shoes while away, there’s no reason for missing runs while travelling.
If the thought of running while on vacation has flickered through your mind, make sure you pack the essentials. Depending on where you’re travelling to, pack the necessary gear to be able to run comfortably in the destination’s climate. Looking at the weather forecast will help you avoid over-packing. Grabbing a versatile pair of running shoes, and a couple outfits should be enough to get you through the holiday.
Scout out popular routes
Thankfully, like most things in the world, there’s an app for that. Many runners have some kind of GPS watch that will record their running route. If they upload this data into any app such as MapMyRun, Strava, Garmin Connect etc., it can be available to the public to view. In addition, some sites have heat maps that show the most popular areas to run. Stick to previously run routes, or ‘hot’ areas, so the likelihood of having other people around increases.
Sign up for a race
This is the easiest way to get a run in. Even if it’s not a goal race, you’ll get to see the city without worrying about traffic, and possibly get a good workout in! Even looking up other race maps can give some ideas on where to run too. After the race, knowing some of the areas that you ran through can give some insight on other areas to check out on a subsequent run.
Connect with the locals
Most cities will have run groups either out of running stores, or with local clubs/crews. Check out their websites, or ask a local running store about your options and hop in with the group. It’s a great way to run with others, see the sights without worry, and learn some good routes.
Ask your hotel
Hotels are a wealth of knowledge. Typically staffed with locals, the concierges or receptionists will likely know of local parks or popular areas to run in even if they aren’t runners themselves. If all else fails, utilize the hotel’s fitness centre. Most hotel will have at least one treadmill to get in some extra miles, even if it’s not the most scenic of options.
Look on a map
If you’re in a city, either check out a guide book, or look online at a map of the area. Local parks, trails, stadiums, and schools will likely be listed and can give insight to what’s available. If you need to get a workout in, there’s usually a track that’s available for public use. It may not be rubberized, but it’ll be 400m of undisturbed running.
The internet is going to be your friend while travelling. From running apps, to online maps, and city pages, everything you need to know will be on there. If you don’t feel like researching, just lace up your shoes, write the hotel’s address on your hand, and get outside. Someone will be able to help you if you get lost!