Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Things to consider when planning a Race-cation

A lot of our races have been race-cations so I'd say we know a thing or two about traveling for races.

With that being said, we thought we'd mention a few things that racers might consider (or reconsider) while planning their race-cation.



1. For some people their race-cation may be their "family Vacation" as well. This is common when doing Disney races. If it is your first Disney race, you may want to reconsider bringing the kids, the in-laws, and other relatives.  The race weekend is YOUR weekend. This is not a time to be worrying about coordinating everyone else's schedule. Race weekends can potentially be stressful enough (but in a good way) and sometimes worrying about family can add to that.  I am thankful that I come from a family of runners, so when we go on race-cation they are running with me. If they are not, they at least understand about the early bedtime and the "running routine".  If you do not have runners in your family, consider going with a running friend.

2. This is one mistake I've made more than once (especially at Disney). Reconsider doing your sightseeing or park hopping before race day. I know when we go to Disney we want to make the most of our time and get our monies worth out of our Park tickets but sometimes it's just not worth it. I've shown up on race morning not being able to move my legs at the start line because I walked around all day at Disneyland the day before. Huge mistake!  We've learned our lesson and now there are times we go to Disney races and don't even bother to purchase park tickets. When I visited NYC last month there were a ton of things I wanted to do, but I knew better than to do all that walking before race day.  Plan accordingly.

3. This one is a no brainer but if you have to fly to your race-cation, ALWAYS pack your race gear in your carry-on. Enough said.

4.  When booking a hotel for your race think Location, Location, Location!  Splurge on the hotel if it is close to the start, finish, or transportation. Being in the area you want to be in is well worth the extra $100 or so and can cause a lot less stress for you on race morning.

Any other suggestions?


We are linking up with the gals from TOTR.

42 comments:

  1. I actually don't think I have packed my race gear in my carryon when I have flown for races. Not a good idea but luckily its worked out so far! Next time I will have to make sure to do that.

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    1. I once read where a blogger put her running shoes in her checked bag and then the airline lost her luggage! Actually she did end up getting it back very late though.

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  2. One of the reasons why I have not done Disney race yet is because I think I would be exhausted after playing around in the park

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    1. Haha, yea you would be. Disney trips are always exhausting!

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  3. One thing I do for my racecations is run first and sightsee after. I plan around the race, making that the first thing to happen on our trip. After that, I can recover and relax with my family!

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  4. Great tips! For both Disney and Vegas I tried to plan the bulk of the vacation after the race so I could walk around without worry. Before race is mostly expo and pool time. And after the race I don't have to be so careful with what I eat or drink either.

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  5. Yup- totally agree with your points! I can't do family AND races (at least not when looking at the half distance) so I have to go back to Disney with them later. Darn it. ;)

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    1. Haha, yes, it's a good excuse to visit again with the family!

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  6. Excellent list! One day, I will take a racecation... instead of finding a race while I'm away.

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  7. I always do carry-on, even though I fly Southwest most of the time. I've learned in the past when luggage is lost, it adds a lot of stress in general.

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    1. Yes, me too! I like to be in control of my bag!

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  8. I still need to do a racation just so I can feel like a "REAL" Runner ;) haha

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  9. Definitely reconsidered miles of walking the day before! I love racecations--the perfect way to see places!

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  10. Great tips. of course, I am guilty of not doing ALL these. I usually stay with friends and most of the time, my race is at the end though I do prefer it first.

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    1. Sometimes we can't help how it works out but it is nice when we can do the race first!

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  11. I learned the hard way to do the sightseeing after the race. And as for bringing your gear, lay out everything ahead of time to make sure you aren't forgetting something crucial.

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    1. Oh, laying out gear is something I do as soon as I get to the hotel now. If I forgot something, I want to now right away! I learned the hard way when I forgot my princess skirt for my disney race one year. I was so bummed!

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  12. Great tips! I definitely agree about sight seeing but never seem to follow my own advice, especially when visiting a new place! Haha whoops!

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    1. I know, it's hard when you only have a limited time some place and you want to fit it all in!

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  13. #4 is key! The older I get, the more I splurge for convenience!

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  14. It can be hard to talk my husband into splurging on the hotel. He just loves a deal. Of course he is also the one that has to deal with the driving & parking if we aren't close enough to walk. :)

    I've actually found that putting the vacation first works most of the time for me -- heat acclimation, elevation acclimation -- but I think I also have a pretty good feel for how much is enough for me.

    Sometimes, though, my husband also has a little trouble with the idea that it's MY time & what I eat & when is important. He's learning.

    Pack more than one outfit if the weather is iffy. Even if that causes you to check a bag (but make sure shoes & outfits are in carry on). I've been caught with the wrong outfit for the weather (often due to poor forecasts) and it's seriously impacted my races a few times.

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    1. Yea, having the wrong clothes on race day can make things miserable!

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  15. OMG this reminds me of my first Boston Marathon. Spectating Boston was on my FIL's bucket list so the in-laws came with as well as my family and 12 of my friends. I felt bad for not being able to spend time with my friends beyond a race-eve pasta dinner and Hurricane MIL was hell on wheels, as usual.

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    1. Oh no! This does not sound like it was a fun trip. Hope your race went well though.

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  16. When I plan a race-cation I plan for the race to be at the front of the vacation and the real vacation starts after I cross the finish line :-) I agree on the hotel tip- the splurge is worth it!

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  17. Great tips! When I place a racecation I have to consider little people... adds a nice layer of stress. ;)

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  18. I prefer to run outside, but staying at a place with a treadmill is helpful in case you don't feel safe running in the area where you're staying but will need to get in a short run on the day before the race. Racecations are a lot of fun!

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    1. If I'm going on a racecation, running on a treadmill is the last thing on my mind...haha

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  19. I just finished a racecation where scheduling required that I play first and then run. Yeah, not my favorite way to handle things, but I survived.

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  20. Great tips! I agree that it's worth it to splurge for the race hotel!

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  21. Its so hard to go to Disney and not enjoy time in the parks. Time off from work is so limited, that its often difficult to take extra time off after the race for play. Thankfully, I don't ever go into Disney races with a PR mindset, so running on tired legs doesn't come back to bite me.

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    1. You make a good point, especially for those who make disney their one and done and bring the whole family!

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.