Although travel can be a challenge, it doesn't make running impossible. It just takes a little planning, flexibility, and tenacity. Here are some strategies to keep you running on the road.
Travel comfortably. If possible, wear comfortable travel wear and your running shoes and walk every chance you get. Waiting for that plane delay? Walk the terminals until they call your group to board. It's not running, but it's movement, and that counts too. Have a longer delay? Pack your running gear and get in a run at the airport fitness center or run the stairs in the parking garage. It all adds up.
Plan your accommodations at hotel chains that offer fitness centers. I'm a Hilton-Hampton Inn girl, and I know every time I book, they'll have a Precor Treadmill I can run on. It makes a significant difference, especially for safety if I'm traveling alone. Some hotels may also have relationships with local fitness centers or gyms.
Run locally. If you're traveling to the same destinations frequently, check out the local running stores in town. Many have weekly fun runs and you could create an on-the-road running network. They are also a great resource for other places to run in town if you can't make their scheduled group run.
Credit: Runner's World
Get running routes from your hotel. Ask the front desk for running routes near the hotel. Many have maps of safe roads to run in the area.
Keep it short on busy days. Run shorter but harder intensity workouts on the days where time is limited. Ex. 3-minute warm up, 5 minute easy run, 6 x 1 minute at a hard but controlled effort level followed by 2 minutes easy running to recover, and a 4-minute cool down. You can get a lot of quality in 30 minutes.
Run early. Your schedule may not be yours when traveling, so getting in your workout early guarantees you get it in.
Go up. Without a treadmill or option to run outside? Hit the stairs and perform a fun and challenging interval workout. Ex. Walk up and down the stairs and then perform a strengthening exercise like squats or lunges. Repeat for 20-30 minutes. It burns a ton of calories and is a great complement to your running program.
Maintain muscle and joint health. Foam rolling on the road keeps my body feeling fresh and relaxed after a long expo standing on my feet. Perform foam rolling and flexibility exercises once per day to maintain optimal muscle and joint health. Every session simulates a deep tissue massage and releases tension that builds from standing in heels, sitting on planes, trains and automobiles, and sleeping in different beds. My new favorite go-to flexibility device for traveling is the Grid Mini: all the bennies of the full size foam roller in a convenient travel size. Also effective is The Stick. (I have no affiliation with either of these products-love them both).
Mix it up. Cross-train with strengthening workouts. A little goes a long way and maintains active muscle tissue. Download my free 10-minute Minimalist Guide to Strength Routine or use a video or fitness app.
Eat healthy. Avoid the traveling 10-the weight that is commonly gained when traveling regularly. Pack healthy, nutritious snacks for the road. My go-to travel foods are almond butter travel packs, apples, bars, carrot sticks, and almonds. Once I land, I head to a grocery store and buy yogurt, fruit, and veggies for the week. If healthy food is around, it's easy to snack healthy and that aids in feeling good and maintaining your fitness routine.
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