Running on Holiday – 5 Top Tips

Running on Holiday

It’s not easy. Sometimes life has to get in the way of your training plan. Sad as it is, we’ve all been there. You’re excitedly packing your bags for your well deserved week or two away and then bang, the realisation hits you. How are you going to go running on holiday?! How are you going to escape to train without facing the wrath of your family? Fear not. Below are 5 tips to get you through your holiday without denting your training plan.  With a bit of imagination, you can improve your running with a holiday filled with relaxation and a different environment to run in.

1.     Accept you will run less.

This is an important mental barrier to overcome and vital to ensure sanity. Accept you will run less often and make them count. A good way to do this is to plan your “easy week” around your holiday.

2.     Embrace the rest.

This goes hand-in-hand with the above point. Accept that an easier week can actually provide large gains, especially if you are coming off some heavy training.

3.     Something is better than nothing.

If you don’t have time to do your scheduled 90 min long run then don’t panic. Just do something no matter how short. Research has shown that maintaining fitness is a great deal easier than gaining it. The difference in fitness lost between a week of no running and a week with 3 short runs in is significant.

4.     Use your environment.

Variety is the key to good training and your holiday provides the perfect excuse to mix up your training. Beaches, mountains, a new city to explore – use your imagination!

5.     Quality over quantity.

Certain sessions provide good bang for your buck in terms of time. Use them. Tempo runs, fartlek runs, time-based intervals, hill reps to name a few. You won’t know the area you are staying too well and are unlikely to be near a running track. So any high-intensity run that uses time as the metric rather than distance is perfect (e.g. 5 x 4min instead of 5 x 1k).

Our favourite: a steady 40 min run along the beach (maintain aerobic fitness). Stopping off at sand dunes for 8 x 8-second sprints (maintain neuromuscular fitness). For the record, sand dune sprints hurt!

Most of all: wear sunscreen and time your run to avoid the hottest part of the day. Happy holidays!