A runcation combines travel with running. These fitness holidays are built around an official event such as a marathon, triathlon or fun run. From the Great Wall of China to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco or even the beaches of Jamaica – after researching your options online or with a travel agent, you could transform almost any vacation into an opportunity to compete.
Where and How?
Runcations have emerged as an alternative to the traditional spa or poolside holiday. While you could always participate in a local marathon, travelling overseas for a race turns the event into even more of an experience.
You don’t have to be an Olympic athlete to join in either. Events such Bermuda Marathon Weekend with its mile and 10K races and Australia’s Great Ocean Road Marathon, which also includes a 1.5km kids’ run, two fun runs and a half-marathon, encourage tourists of all fitness levels to have a go.
If you’re really up for a challenge, running the mountains of the Scottish Highlands has become very popular. Hill runs, trail runs, triathlons and duathlons are all available and you can complete your snowy trek alone or with a group. These extreme runcations can also be customised for those who like to experience the landscape via their own unique route.
How to Prepare
Runcations involve a little more preparation than renewing your passport and packing enough spare socks.
- Do your research: before you jump on a plane, learn as much as possible about the course, and train accordingly.
- Packing: make a thorough checklist all the items you’ll need. If possible, carry or wear your running shoes on the plane, as they’re the last things you want to lose.
- Avoid jetlag: If possible, try to schedule your arrival a few days before a race. That way you’ll have time to get some rest and familiarise yourself with your new surroundings.
- Sightseeing: To avoid tiring your legs before the big race, it may be best to leave any walking tours until after the race.