Ten Tips for Triathlon Training while Traveling

20 02 2014

I hope all your English-major types appreciate my alliteration there! 🙂

My job requires me to travel a bit, not one of those Monday-Thursday deals, but I am on the road (or in the air) at least once a month, often twice per month. I just got back from a conference in San Diego, which is most certainly not a regular thing, unfortunately.

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Training for a triathlon is hard all on its own. Throw in travel and it gets even harder. Early flights, delayed flights, work dinners, work meetings, etc – throw these into the mix and you’ve got fewer hours to yourself to train on the road than when you’re home.  You’re also in an unfamiliar city without your usual training buddies- so how do you make it work?

I’m certainly no expert, but here are a few things that I’ve learned along the way:

1. Your flight’s not until the afternoon/evening? Be sure to get in your workout at home before you leave!

2. If you can, work out in the morning, before work! You never know what might come up at night. A meeting runs long? Team dinner? You will most likely be too tired after a long day to want to go to the gym.

3. Need to swim? Look in to the county/city parks and rec department- they may be your best bet for a pool!

4. Ask the front desk if there are running trails nearby. They might even provide you with a map! Just be sure to make sure the route is safe- and always tell someone where you’re going and how long you expect to be gone.

IMG_20315. If you have a gym membership, research if there’s a location nearby (and that your membership is national).

6. Look for cycling studios, gyms, and yoga studios near where you’ll be spending most of your time. It’s always fun to check out a new class and get a workout in! Sometimes, there will even be first timer discounts:) When I’m in Madison, there’s a cyc fitness on my way to the office- they’ve got a shower too so I can hit up a class and clean up before heading in.

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7. If weather and time permit, rent a bike- it’s a great way to see the city and get a workout in! I’ve done this several times- in Maine, Wisconsin, and California, and rented decent road bikes rather than hybrids or cruisers. It costs a little more, but I felt like I actually got a real workout in while exploring!

IMG_20828. Use social media to find good run spots, gyms, or even a workout buddy! That’s how I got my butt out of bed for an early morning swim when I was in DC. I’m so grateful that Victoria joined me!

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9. Pack your nicest workout clothes (hear me out here!) Most likely they are made of material that dries fast (and maybe even is anti microbial) and you can get a few workouts in without being gross- or just hop in the shower with them on for a quick wash; they’ll dry before your next workout. I always pack for multi-day trips: a pair of tri shorts, a good sports bra, a workout tank, and yoga pants. Then, depending on whether I’ll be running outside or inside, I’ll pack a pair of shorts and a running shirt, and/or some layerable clothing. If I know I’ll get a swim in, I will pack my swim cap, goggles and suit too. Sometimes I will pack one of those super light back packs that you get at races to carry my gear to the gym or pool if it’s off site. Oh, and don’t forget a water bottle!

10. And if all else fails, of course, there’s always the hotel gym!

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Ok readers, what are your best tips for training while traveling?