This post is all about my favorite workout, favorite way to see a new city, and favorite way to manage my natural stress level: running!
Get a Map
Or at least look at one before you head out! Often hotels have running maps available, or they can tell you the best running routes around, depending on the distance you want to cover or what you want to see. When possible, bring a small map with you. You don’t want to look like you don’t know where you’re going (and bringing along a guidebook or large map will definitely signal to people that you’re not a local), but you also don’t want to actually get lost in a new place!
Essential Info: How to Read a Map
Use a Mapping App
Similarly, you can use a mapping app like Map My Run. I love this because occasionally, I’ve needed a real-time map to show me how I got where I am so I can find out how to get back. There have been a few times on my travels when I didn’t know how to get back to my hotel, so I looked at my mapping app and found the best way to get there from where I was.
More here: The Best Apps for Travel
Wear the Right Gear
Always take a peek at the forecast when you’re packing and again before you set out on your travel run, and dress appropriately! Remember that your body warms up about 20 degrees while you’re running, so plan your workout gear accordingly.
Additionally, when possible, pack running gear with pockets. If your gear doesn’t have a pocket, consider getting a Sprigs Banjee to wear on your wrist:
Also essential for many runs is an armband for your phone. This is the ones I use, and it fits any size:
Bring Your Key, Hotel Business Card, ID,
and a Credit Card or Cash
Why do you need that pocket or Banjee above? Because there are a few things you should take with you on a run in a new place:
- Hotel key
- Hotel business card, in case you need to show someone where you’re staying in the event you need to ask directions
- Photo ID
- Credit card and/or cash, just in case you need to take a cab back to the hotel or decide to stop for breakfast or coffee during your run
If you want to go minimally, take your hotel key and ID. The other are not essential, but strongly suggested!
More here: How to Travel Safely
Don’t Over Do It
Physical activity in the morning is a great way to beat jet lag and tell your body it’s time to be awake, but be careful out there, and listen to your body. Maybe you normally go five miles, but that first day in a new place you need to go for three instead. Or maybe you need to walk for a minute or two after each mile to give your body a break. Don’t go for a PR or decide to go for eight miles just to challenge yourself, just do what feels positive for your body.
Stop to Enjoy the Location!
I love morning runs on my travels because I can usually get amazing photos with few or even no people in them! You get the great morning light, you get the cooler temperatures (a big plus in summer), and you start your day telling your body, “We’re here, let’s be awake for it!” I often run a little ways, take some photos, run a little, take more photos, run a little, stop for more photos, etc., and it’s awesome. A relaxed, no-pressure run is always the way I want to start my day on travel. How about you?
Want more travel fitness tips? Check out my Health and Wellness Page!
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