Summer is officially here, and with it comes a PACKED calendar. I love it, but it also means I am constantly working and reworking my packing priorities. I wanted to talk about some of things I love to bring with me when I travel, and how I keep my training on track. One of the first things I do when I know there is a trip on the calendar if fit it in with my training calendar so both (the travel and the training) have the best opportunity to be successful and FUN!
Let’s start with the most fun part – the stuff!
- Lo & Sons Bag: This weekender bag is my absolute favorite. It seriously holds so much stuff. It has a compartment for your shoes, and it definitely lives up to the hype.
- Cross Body Bag: I am a fan of carrying on whenever humanly possible. So I tend to downsize my purse into a cross body bag. That way, I can tuck that bag into the weekender and pull it out only when needed.
- Delsey suitcase: Delsey should rename this particular suitcase “the blogger” because it seems like everyone who blogs owns this suitcase LOL. But it is for good reason. It looks good, holds a lot, and keeps your stuff organized. I ordered a ton of hard sided suitcases and hands down, this one was the one that held the most stuff.
- Align pant: These are the best airplane pants and lounge pants. So unbelievably comfortable.
- Packing cubes: Roll your clothes up tightly and use packing cubes. You will be shocked how much stuff you can fit.
- Althleta hoodie: I am usually cold. Even in a hot climate, all the restaurants crank up the AC, so I like to have something light to throw on.
- Wrap scarf: Again, often cold, this is a great option for airplanes. You can use it as a wrap, as a pillow, or even as a blanket if you unsnap it.
- Speed shorts: These shorts are my go to. If I am traveling for 7 days, I can get away with bringing less running clothes by rewearing. Don’t act grossed out – you sometimes have to do what you have to do. Here are some ways to get around it: (1) When you are done with your run, throw your running clothes in the shower and rinse them off. Then hang dry for the day. (2) Bring fabrics that don’t hold stink, this quarter zip from Tracksmith is one of my favorites.
- Compression socks: It is great to wear these on the airplane, or even just to bed. Flying and lack of sleep mean your recovery is a little more challenging than normal. Bonus points if you rock ones that are appropriately holiday themed.
- Bundle cords: keep your charges together in one place. Keep them from getting tangled. Keep all your crap charged. Keep yourself from going slowly insane via technology. .
- GoPro: Photos are my favorite souvenirs from a trip. I love my GoPro for running photos, action photos, water, whatever. It can do it all and you can access the photos immediately from my your phone for ultimate Instagram postability.
- Traveling with delicate jewelry: If you like delicate necklaces like I do, thread them through a bendy straw. Place all the straws in a ziplock bag, and you are good to go! No tangles. I found
- Packing like colors: I pack all of my clothes in the same color scheme, so that everything goes together and can be mixed and matched. Less thinking. I brighten up the color scheme with fun jewelry and scarves.
- Airborne: Your immune system is majorly compromised when traveling. Load up on the Vitamins!
- Nuun: It is much easier to get dehydrated when you travel. Nuun is always a SAVIOR when it comes to a possible hang over. If you can, drink one right before you go to bed and one right when you get up. The electrolytes and hydration will help in a major way. I
- Snacks: I usually bring RX Bars (they hold up really well in your purse even when it is hot) along so that I am never without food. Especially if you do an early morning workout and everyone else isn’t going to be ready to eat breakfast for a couple of hours. Outside of that, I avoid living off bars and try my best to enjoy the food and experiences. Food is part of the experience, like it or not.
- RunGum: When I am home, I love to enjoy a cup of coffee before I workout. On the road, you may not always have that luxury. This is the perfect about of energy to get me moving quickly.
- Resistance bands & sliders: You can fit in a great workout anywhere with these.
- JayBird headphones: wireless and noise cancelling for the airplane to your run.
- Vital Proteins Collagen packs: Because I want my little pony hair down to my butt and I hate pre-measuring out a ton of powders.
- Lastly, but most important – the R8. It saves my legs and I can fit it into most bags or backpacks. My boyfriend teases me a little for bringing it along with me always, but he doesn’t mind using it! If I have room, I love the R3 for my feet too.
Now of course, the most important part. Managing your training plan:
- Start of with managing your expectations: Don’t set yourself up for failure by having unrealistic expectations. If you know you will only have 30 minutes to sneak in a run, don’t mentally plan for 7 miles. You will just end up feeling defeated.
- Be happy with what you can do: Speaking to my point above, be proud of yourself for getting in whatever you can while on vacation or while traveling. That is will power, time management, and you should be proud.
- Do a little research: Is there a gym nearby? What does your hotel gym have? Most hotel websites show a (very flattering) photo of their gym. Or call and ask. Is there a treadmill? Safe, well-lit running paths? Maybe a spin or yoga class in the area that you can get a free or discounted pass to? Is there a local running club you can go on a run with?
- Consider the rest of the day’s activities: Are you going on a major hike? Doing a ton of walking? Surfing? Take your fitness level into account. If you are at a tenuous place, it might not be smart to push a run/hard workout and then walk 5 miles all over a city, or go rock climbing. I recognize this may sound hypocritical coming from a person who walked up a monument the day after a marathon. And by all means, if you are feeling up to it – go for it (and then enjoy wine and an extra slice of cake at dinner)! But don’t push it if you aren’t. After all, sightseeing is one of the best ways to cross train in my opinion.
- Get it done early: if you have an important workout to do during a trip, get it done early. When I am traveling (especially for work), I always make sure to do my workouts first thing in the morning. It is too easy to get tired, unmotivated, or go to happy hour later in the day 🙂
- Get creative: No track? Run circles around a large parking lot. Run back and forth up a street. Use body weight exercises if you don’t have weights. No hills in sight? Find an overpass and run up and down one side. Some airports even have gyms in them now if you have an unexpected flight delay or a long layover. (I have been saying for years that all airports need gyms and nail salons.)
- Long run/quality workouts: If you don’t think you will have enough time for your long run while traveling, can you move it a day up or day out? If that is not an option, run for whatever time will allow, but throw in fartlek-like surges of speed to keep your turn over and intensity high. For quality workouts, do your best to plan ahead. Look to Strava or other websites for good routes in your area. Hotel concierges are a great resource for this too.
- Give yourself grace: Things may come up, and your plan may not go exactly – well, how you planned. And that is FINE. In the past I would lose my mind if I could do my workouts. Admittedly, I am still not great at this, but I am learning that it just doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Especially it if happens once or twice. Let it go, and move on.
- Safety first: I love to run in new places, but safety always has to come first. If it is dark and you don’t know the area, the treadmill might be your best option.
- Laugh it off: Delays, lost baggage, and other various travel mishaps are best handled with a glass of wine and a laugh. The more often you travel, the more often that kind of thing will happen. It’s science. However, some of the most unfortunate travel situations have been turned around with a lot of sarcasm and sauvignon blanc.
I hope that helps! Remember, enjoy every moment of your travels and don’t let anything stop you from doing that. S**t happens, but if you can choose to have a positive attitude and see the silver lining, you’ll come out on top. Or at least have some great stories that will be funny to retell later – after wine.