Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Vacations on the Run

Many of you will be hitting the road soon for a vacation. Dictionary.com defines vacation as a period of suspension of work, study, or other activity, usually used for rest, recreation, or travel. Why not make that "other activity" or "recreation" running related? Some vacations can be busy and hectic trying to fit in everything you and/or your family want to do. So, while you're on vacation this summer, take some time to chill and don't forget to get in a run or two. Running during your vacation can be a great way to get away from the hectic vacation schedule, spend some quality time with your spouse or children, explore the area where you're staying, and/or just enjoy a new and different running route.

Before you pack up the minivan and head out, do a little investigating on the Internet and checkout some of the running venues where you'll be staying. USATF has a great site where you can check out running routes that runners all over the U.S. have mapped out as well as map out your own local routes to leave for others to find. MapMyRun.com is another great site for finding running routes of runners across the country. Athlinks.com is a great site for connecting with other runners. I have used Athlinks to find running groups in the cities I've visited for business trips. Just search members by state. Then you can select various Athlinks members from the city you'll be visiting and email them about the best running routes in their area. You might even want to ask if there are any scheduled group runs in the area in which you can participate while you're in town. Some other great sites to connect with fellow runners include Dailymile.com, running-network.com, and RunnersLounge.com.

Not tech-savvy? Not to worry. May take a little more leg work, but call the hotel or campground where you'll be staying and ask if there are greenways and/or running trails in the area. Or better yet ask them if there are any running clubs in the area that you can contact. You also could contact the Parks and Recreation Departments in the areas you'll be staying to see if they have any info that would be helpful.

Once I was at a conference in San Antonio, TX. My hotel was along the Riverwalk. I had some free time one morning and asked at the front desk if there were any running trails/routes in the area. The nice lady behind the desk said, "Sure!" as she handed me a sheet of paper showing me a running route along the Riverwalk and through a nearby neighborhood. I ran the route and had a great run. The neighborhood was actually an old historic neighborhood with huge old Victorian-style homes. I could have just run on the treadmill in the hotel fitness room, but ended up having a great time running along the river and exploring that neighborhood and it all started by asking a simple question at the front desk.

Something I'd like to try sometime (probably after the kids are grown) is a running vacation. There are actually several services that provide running vacations such as RunningVacation.com, and RunningAway.com. You can also check in with your local travel agency to find out about other running-related trips or tours. Or maybe you want to boost your training and participate in something a little more intense such as a running camp or one of Jeff Galloway retreats.

Inevitably, while running in a new place, you're going to meet new people, fellow runners, and possibly make some lasting friendships. So, hit the trials while on the road!

20 comments:

Jamoosh said...

Running - races or otherwise - is a great way to see the city you are staying in. I was in North Dakota on business one fall and had to stay over a weekend. Found a nearby half marathon through the country and had a blast!

RunnerDude said...

Hey Jamoosh! That's awesome man!I had a similar experience but it was a small 5K. Danny Dreyer, the author of Chi Running, was in the same city for a talk show and he was out on his morning run and joined in on the race for a few blocks. Pretty cool!

acey said...

Some Westins now have running concierges...they actually take you out on a run! i thought that was such a great idea...

RunnerDude said...

Hey acey! Man, that is a great idea! Go Westin!

Rookie on the Run said...

Very timely blog! We are going to Flagstaff & the Grand Canyon in July. My sweet husband was happy to inform me that there is a forest running trail near the hotel. Yay!!

I noticed a few days ago that they even have running cruises. The cruise ships take you to various destinations to run. There are also running seminars on board. :D

Amy said...

Just purchased "Great Races, Incredible Places --
100+ Fantastic Runs Around the World"
written by Kimi Puntillo.

There tons in there I'd like to run...

RunnerDude said...

Hey Rookie on the Run! A running cruise?! Now that sounds cool!!

RunnerDude said...

Hey Amy! Cool book! Good reason to go to Barnes & Noble now! Thanks!!

JenZen said...

I love mapmyrun.com I have to travel a lot for work and I use it all the time to find local running routes in the area. Great way to see how the locals do it.

untpawgal02 said...

Running is the best when you are somewhere new. Last summer was at the Jersey Shore visiting my sister and the boardwalk was a great way to see the little beach towns along the way. Had a great time and was a change of scenery for me!

Jo Lynn said...

I don't go on ANY vacation without my running shoes. There's always "nap time" for other people which means "run time" for me. Woohoo! And the great thing about running is it can be done anywhere. Thanks for those links. ;)

RunnerDude said...

Hey JenZen! I've just started using MayMyRun. It's a really cool site!

RunnerDude said...

Hey Untpawgal02! I've never been to the Jersey Shore, but I hear it's nice. Funny how along that stretch it's call "the shore." Cool

RunnerDude said...

Sure thing, Jo Lynn!

The Lazy Triathlete said...

Great Advice.

Lorenda said...

Look for running stores in the area you will be in, they can direct you to good running places. I once got bad directions to a park from the hotel person and saw a bike shop as I was driving around lost so I went in there and asked about running and they gave me the map they give to people who rent bikes and I had a great run on a trail that circled a lake.
We visited family in Maryland last Thanksgiving weekend. I live in Michigan. At that time we were having middle of winter weather with snow and single digit temps, I was wearing all my hard-core winter running gear. Got to Maryland and it was in the mid 50s! I ran in my knee-length tights, 1 shirt, no hat or gloves. I thought it was great! All the people I saw running out there were all bundled up like it was below zero! One dude even had his face partially covered with one of those scarf type thingys! I felt a little out of place, one lady even asked me if I was freezing so I told her I was from Michigan!!

runnerinsight.com said...

Well, anywhere your vacation maybe,you can still run and run and run! ; ) Runningshoes should always be present because the call of your mind for a run might surprise you after all! : )

RunnerDude said...

Thanks Lazy T.!

RunnerDude said...

Hey Lorenda! Great suggestion to check in with the local bike shop or running store. Guess weather/temperature is relative, huh? I use to run with a guy from Hawaii. When ever it got below 60 he'd were tights or wind pant and at least 2 shirts. This was in North Carolina. Man, if it had been in Michigan he probably would have worn a snow suit. LOL!!

RunnerDude said...

Hey Runnerinsight! You're exactly right! I even keep a pair of running shoes and some shorts in my car, because you just never know when you might have a opportunity to run.