Running On The Road

I’m not referring to the type of runs you do away from the trails.  I’m talking about taking your running on the road.  I hear from a lot of clients who are concerned about still training with work or travel plans.  I absolutely get their concerns.  But I think most people are missing out on the best part of running; doing it in totally new places.  Sure you love your daily running route, but nothing is more exciting than lacing up and not knowing what is around the next corner.

Whether you are out of town on business or with the family on vacation, there are ways to slip away for a few miles.  Heck, after a rough day of business meetings, an evening run in a new city might be the perfect way to unwind (and justify a glass of wine or two later).  Even when you are with the family at a new destination there is often a way to head out for a 30 minute to hour long run.

Maybe you can run on a beach!

Maybe you can run on a beach!

Perhaps you might not be able to log that long run you had your heart set on, or fit in what your training plan called for, but anything is always better than nothing.  The new terrain can also refresh your mind and body and bring a new sense of love for the sport.  This is super helpful when you are in need of a pick me up or if your running is feeling stale.

There are some great apps available to help make travel running easier.  Mapmyrun offers users a way to log their runs with descriptions and mileage for others to look up in various destinations.  A recent favorite of mine is localeikki.com where users can write down and share favorite running routes.  This site is full of great pictures and information for runners, hikers, and bikers.

One of the best ways I find new routes is to do a little online research before I head out on vacation.  When you arrive don’t be afraid to ask around.  Sometimes the best resources are not at the front desk of your hotel.  My husband and I ended up at a bar one afternoon for a post run burger and beer when we met a bartender who happened to be an avid cyclist.  He gave us some great info on places we had never heard of.

That time I got to run in Aruba wasn't so bad.

That time I got to run in Aruba wasn’t so bad.

When all else fails there is always the gym.  I have lucked out here in two different ways.  Sometimes your hotel gym can really surprise you with top notch equipment.  One of our favorite spots in upstate New York offers passes to a local gym that has become my absolute number one facility.  Besides having the best treadmills (and tons of them) they also have a great summer pool situation.  The best part is, the hotel offers this perk for free.  So don’t be afraid to ask at the front desk.  You never know where you might end up!

I know that whenever I travel I tend to eat a lot more food and things that I normally wouldn’t have.  I feel like I fall out of my normal routine and get in a bit of a funk.  Running on vacation always makes me feel like I am still keeping it all on track.

What are you favorite tips for getting runs in on the road?

34 thoughts on “Running On The Road

  1. I love running on vacation! It’s a great way to explore new cities and landscapes. I usually try to make someone go with me so that I don’t get lost though haha. I usually research the area online prior to visiting, the same way that you do, and when needed I use the gym. 🙂

  2. Great tips! I also love running on vacation, if I can (was recently in Vietnam and Cambodia, without hotel gyms, and in super crowded not pedestrian-friendly cities which made it somewhat difficult). I try to plan at least 1 day out of every 3-5 vacation days with a run – and if I can I try to make sure it includes a destination that I want to see. Maybe that monument or cityscape is 2 miles away – that’s a great excuse for a run there and back – complete with photos!

  3. Running (or cycling or swimming) is a challenge when traveling for sure, but I think a lot of it is mental (tired, new area that might be unknown or unfamiliar). When making reservations I usually will try to find a hotel/resort that has an onsite running/jogging path (Disney has them, for example). Finding a place to swim laps can be a whole other challenge, and biking you can usually locate a shop that will rent you one. I try to stay out of the hotel gyms if I can help it, but always good as a last resort.

  4. I usually look at a street map of the city and try to stay on the main roads. Or figure out which main road heads back to my hotel. That way if I get turned around I just need to look for that street.
    Running is a great way to see a new city.

  5. So true! Running in new places feels like an adventure. I get anxious when I travel to visit family though. It’s much harder to squeeze in a run when it takes time away from chasing around my nieces, but if I don’t do it I’m sluggish and cranky.

  6. Smartphones have made this infinitely more safe, since I have a knack for getting lost just about everywhere! It is such a nice way to explore a new place (especially when you can map your way back)

  7. Aahhh, this is exactly what in stressing about for this summer! I have a month long Asian adventure coming up and I’m worried I’ll spend all of my time eating and drinking and not enough time exercising. Especially if I’m at hotels with no gyms or in cities that aren’t particularly running friendly. I want to stay in shape for the fall’s race season!!

  8. Oh I always run on the road! There’s also a grass roots website called Ramblen that helps you to work out in new cities. Hotel front desk folks sometimes also have routes for you. When I ran in a park in NC, the park ranger gave me a map with some routes too!

  9. So true! When we went to Italy last year I checked out Strava for the cities we were visiting and saw where the most popular running routes were. It makes running so much fun – you’re never quite sure what’s around the next corner.

  10. Great blog. The reason I run is because it gets me to see new places and explore. Live for the adventure. In new cities, you’re right, go and look at a map and find those routes. Great way to sight see.

  11. It’s like this post was made for meeee! I spent the past almost-week training on vacation. It was glorious to run outside in much warmer temps. And I didn’t have to feel so bad about all the food I was shoving in my face because I wasn’t sedentary while I was down in Florida. Man do I miss 75 degrees already.

  12. Pingback: NJ Marathon Training Week 7 Recap | Run Salt Run

  13. I try and find new places to run every week. I loves posting pictures of the places I find and things I see on my blog even though its a pain to stop my run to take a snapshot.

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