Summer is in full swing and for many, this is the time of year for weekend trips and longer travels! It’s easy to feel guilty when vacation mode gets in the way of training, but that doesn’t need to be the case. With some adjustments, CrossFitters can WOD from anywhere. Olympic lifters will find it’s much harder to stick to their programming while on the road but a vacation doesn’t need to derail all progress either. The following tips will make training on the road a bit easier.
Tip #1: E-mail the local CrossFit box when you find out you’ll be traveling to a new destination- even if you are an Olympic lifter. Many boxes will accommodate travelers for a minimal fee. It’s easier to be a CrossFitter dropping in to a class than an Olympic lifter training on the side in a strange place, but gym owners are usually pretty understanding of both situations. An added benefit of this is getting to know the locals and having a home away from home for the week you are gone. In Germany, my husband and I trained at Myleo CrossFit and found that we had a lot in common with the owners. They even took us out for a night to a party on the river which is something we never would have found on our own. The beauty of our community is that there are friends ready to meet you all over the world.
Tip #2: Don’t train on a day when you’ll be traveling. It’s tempting to hit up the local gym as soon as your plane lands so that you are able to get a workout in before you get your party on, but planes cause major dehydration and training in that condition is a strain on your body. Give yourself a day and focus on rehydrating after a flight. The picture below includes a link to some oral rehydration tablets that are travel friendly and will help if you do become dehydrated.(Check out this article on the importance of hydration).
Tip #3: If you are taking a week long trip, adjust your training cycle to make the week of your trip a deload week. Maybe that means going four weeks before hitting a deload rather than the typical three. I’m doing this for an upcoming trip to Italy because some of the towns I’m visiting do not have gyms. When I went to Florida earlier this year, I stuck with my normal programming because I knew that I’d have access to all of my normal equipment. In the fall, I’ll be headed to Southeast Asia where my Olympic lifting training will become much harder without Oly bars and platforms. At that point, I’ll switch my focus to strength training so that when I’m able to Olympic lift again, I have a stronger base. There are always ways to modify your training cycle during travels while keeping sight of your overall goals. (Check out this article on the importance of deload week).
Tip #4: Bring a jump rope and some sneakers with you. These are easy to pack and won’t take up much room in your luggage. Sure, your training won’t be as extensive as when you are at home, but if you are following the advice of #3, you might be on a deload week anyway. And don’t kid yourself, there are plenty of ass kicking workouts that you can create with a few bodyweight movements and a jump rope. When I traveled to the beautiful island of Santorini in Greece a few years back, I was able to keep up with my CrossFit by doing some quick wods early in the morning to avoid the incredible heat. The view of the caldera early in the morning was so serene and made for a memorable training session. (Check out these double under tips so you can incorporate those into your vacation wods!)
Tip #5: Change your mindset. We all have goals- events we want to qualify for and movements we want to master- but life has to be lived as well. Unless you are an elite athlete, you can temporarily put those goals on hold to enjoy a vacation. Top athletes can’t afford that luxury, but most of us aren’t training for The CrossFit Games or the Olympics. Even still, as athletes, we tend to be pretty intense people and it can be hard for us to relax. Try to remember that recovery for the mind is as important as recovery for the body. Allowing yourself to enjoy a trip could actually lead to increased gains when you get back to your routine, and there are plenty of things to do on vacation for some good ol’ fashioned active recovery!