Go for a Swim and Take the Long Way Home: How to Sneak Exercise into Vacation

Hey everyone: I’ve just arrived a few days ago at my family’s Mecca, which is Dennis, Massachusetts about halfway down Cape Cod (I describe it as sitting on the “bicep” of the arm that the Cape Cod peninsula resembles). My family comes here every summer for this week and spends the week on the beach- ending with a family golf tournament and big field day style party. Anyway, vacation is usually associated with complete relaxation: beer, lounging, snacking, and sun bathing. And that’s all fantastic. But how do you keep up your fitness (at least to an extent) and not miss out on family time or relaxation? You’ve really gotta learn how to incorporate it into the day seamlessly…to the point where you don’t even notice you’re doing it.

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Sea Street Beach!

First, if you’re on the beach- the ocean is right there. Go for a swim! If you swim for even a half hour to forty minutes, play a game of frisbee or catch, maybe run around with a few younger cousins, you’ll be keeping up a really high level of activity without even noticing it. I love swimming the length of the beach down to the jetty at the end. Once I tag the jetty, I feel so accomplished- the swim is probably over a quarter of a mile. Especially since I swam at a depth where I couldn’t touch down and rest, I really tired myself out quickly. And then I sat sunbathing on a rock like a mermaid for the next half hour. It’s the perfect mix. I could go for runs on the beach, but that feels too much like intense training and against the spirit of vacation. But going for a swim is just at the right level.

Another way to keep your blood flowing while it’s thinning out from the heat is to take the long way home. Walk if you can. Take a bike down to the beach, and only bring what you can fit in a backpack. Try not to stress about getting back at a certain time. You’re on vacation. Offer to carry the heavy cooler or pick up someone else’s chair. Do some light stretching in the morning. Take the dog for a walk. Take a romantic “long walk down the beach”. It’s really not hard to keep up at least a little of the energy of the little kids sprinting up and down the beach all day…and then I highly advise kicking back with something cold to drink. Because hell…it is vacation.

Except I have Tough Mudder and the Baltimore Half Marathon fast approaching in September and October, respectively. So that’s a little terrifying.

How do you try and keep your health and fitness on track during vacation? How do you manage to balance it?

Do you have any training tips for me for my upcoming races?! 

Comment/Follow/Like what I got to say…I appreciate every single one! (:

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