Tuesday, October 14, 2014
How to keep up your running routine when travelling
I'm a bit of a running freak. I always have been. I was that massive keeno who could not wait until school's annual cross-country. I just loved the mud, the cold, bitter weather and of course, THE MASSIVE HILLS. Running has always been an integral part of my week.
I run because I want to stay healthy. I run because heck, I'm vain and want to look and feel good in a bikini/birthday suit (cheeky). I run because every now and then, I need to clear my head and and those feel-good endorphins are a nice side effect too.
Running is actually my idea of fun and I even travelled to Nice for a casual half marathon (the lovely scenery and old town weren't bad either).
This isn't even said with a hint of irony, I kid you not.
But when I toddled off on my gap year, I let my exercise routine slide - big time. And when I returned, albeit happy and tanned and brimming full of memories to brag about to all my nearest and dearest, I came back with a bit of extra baggage. None of my clothes fit, I avoided being in any photos and the post-travel blues hit me hard there and then.
When I went off travelling at the end of my year abroad, I was defiant I wouldn't have a repeat performance. Whilst I enjoyed the local treats, various ice cream breaks and may have indulged in some of the local licors, I managed to keep up my running routine. And with some of my handy tips, hopefully you will be able too.
First things first
I may sound like a massive fun sponge but safety first. Have you seen people out running? Are there parks nearby or are there outdoor gyms (the best thing ever for a budget traveller)? If in doubt, ask at your accommodation to find out if it's safe or not to dash out for a run.
Find your route
If you see people out and about running, find out where they go. Like said before, parks are usually a runner's paradise so see if there are any nearby. Beaches are also great running tracks plus if you run barefoot on the sand, it's a more intense workout meaning more calories burnt off.
Use apps and social media
Especially if you're travelling solo, meeting for a cheeky jog is a great way to see the city as well as meet people. Meetup is great for finding running meetups and if you're stuck finding running routes, find other runner's routes at MapMyRun.
Make time to run
As sacrilegious as it sounds, making time to get up a bit earlier and getting your running stuff ready the night before sets you up to run. It's surprisingly easy when you're in a non air-conditioned room in a tropical climate, no lie-ins past 8am for you. But if you can't bring yourself to get up early, why not try a sunset run instead? You get to enjoy the sight of the sun setting on another day as well as having the chance to clear your head whilst out on a jog.
What are your top tips to keeping up your running routine when abroad?