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10 tips for running during summer vacation

How to balance sun, fun and training for your fall goal race

vacation

With many Canadians getting in a last week or two of vacation before the kids head back to school and we return to our normal routines, late August is also a time when training regimes are in full swing for fall goal races. Embarking on a summer vacation doesn’t mean your training has to take a backseat. With a bit of planning and adaptation, you can maintain your fitness and enjoy your trip to the fullest.

Pack smart 

Don’t forget to pack your running gear, including shoes, moisture-wicking clothing and accessories like a hat and sunglasses. Choose lightweight and breathable fabrics to stay comfortable in the heat. Make sure to check the weather at your destination, so you are prepared for whatever Mother Nature has in store.

running on the beach

Make use of laundry facilities

If you’re staying at an Airbnb or hotel with laundry facilities, make use of them. This will allow you to pack fewer running outfits, so you don’t need to bring an entire extra suitcase for all of your running gear. 

Plan your routes 

Research your destination beforehand and identify safe and scenic running routes. Beaches, parks, and waterfronts often offer picturesque paths. Apps like Google Maps or Strava can help you map out routes with distance and elevation information.

Adjust your schedule

Opt for early-morning or late-evening runs to avoid the hottest parts of the day, and to ensure your workouts don’t get in the way of whatever other activities you’ve planned. Running during sunrise or sunset can also provide a beautiful backdrop for your workout.

cape breton scenery
Photo: Alex MacLean

Variation is key 

Embrace the vacation spirit and mix up your routine. Run on the beach, explore new trails or try some hill sprints. Varying your terrain and intensity can make your runs more enjoyable.

Cross-train 

Use your vacation as an opportunity to try new activities. Swimming, biking, or even walking tours can be great ways to stay active without overloading your running routine.

Forgo any big workouts

Save any key workouts or fitness tests for when you’re back home. Instead, opt for fun, relatively short workouts that keep you feeling fresh without completely wiping you out. After all, you want to still have some energy left over to enjoy your vacation, and trying to hit a really hard or long workout when you’re out of your regular routine often doesn’t end well.

beach vacation
Beach bag

Look for local running groups 

Check whether there are any local running groups or events at your vacation spot. Running with others can be a fun way to explore the area and make new friends.

Don’t forget nutrition 

Balance indulgence with healthy choices. Enjoy local cuisine, but avoid planning a run after trying the spicy shrimp dish from the local food truck. Remember to drink plenty of water as well, so you’re well hydrated when you head out for your run.

Take some time for rest and relaxation 

Remember that vacations are also about recharging. If your body needs a break, don’t hesitate to take a day off running and focus on recovery.

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