You’ve gotten into a routine with your training. You’ve figured out your sleep, nutrition, and training schedule. You’ve gone months without falling off track and are experiencing progress as a result of your sustained efforts.
But what happens when your training schedule is interrupted by travel? Time away from home should be something you look forward to, but instead, it can become a point of anxiety. Will you get your training in? Will you fall out of your routine? Will all the gains you’ve been working towards be lost in a week?
Knowing when to train and when to enjoy vacation You first have to recognize that a week to ten days is not enough time to lose months of dedicated practice and progress. A short period of time off will not reverse the work you have already put in.
That being said, you will want to take into consideration a number of factors when deciding if and how you will sustain your lifestyle while away from home. How many days are you gone for? Are you traveling for work or is this a vacation you’ve been dreaming up for years? Will you have access to local gyms? What part of your training cycle are you in? Are you training for something specific?
You don’t have to make the choice: to train or not to train. All or nothing. Rather, think of maintaining your lifestyle along a spectrum. Instead of getting all five days of training in, you may plan to get in two. Or instead of your normal 90 minute training session, you get in 30 minutes. Some is better than none.
Finding a place to train If you have committed to the idea of training while you’re away, you’ll need to do a little bit of research to find a training environment that meets your needs. Keep in mind that you may have to sacrifice some aspects of normality. The goal, however, is to find a place to train that meets the minimum requirements to complete your workout. Anything beyond that is a bonus.
Both CrossFit and USA Weightlifting have made it very simple to find training facilities near you.
If you have options, do your research. Check out reviews on Google or Yelp or scroll through their website, Facebook page, or Instagram. While you don’t want to judge a book by its cover, you can typically get a sense of how well the gym is run and what kind of training environment they have to offer by how they manage their online presence.
Making contact Just like you wouldn’t drop into a friend’s house unexpected, don’t show up to a gym without first making contact. Once you’ve found a gym that meets your needs, it is best to reach out ahead of time via email or phone to inform them of your plans to drop in. If you’re dropping into a CrossFit affiliate, keep in mind that you may only be able to complete your training during “open gym” hours, so be sure to ask about their schedule. This is also a great time to have answered any questions you may have re: fees, equipment, etc.
Packing When packing for your trip, keep it simple. Look at the programming you have for the time you’re away, and bring just what you need. Some essentials include: clothes to train in, lifting shoes, sleeves/wraps if you use them, and your routine pre-workout/post-workout supplements.
Be respectful It’s important to recognize that not every gym you drop into will operate like your home gym. Some gyms allow the dropping of bars, others may not. Some may have kilo plates while others may have pounds. Some may allow you to shout, grunt, yell, take off your shirt. Others will view that as disrespectful or disruptive behavior. Remember that you are the visitor and they are the host. Introduce yourself, ask questions when you’re unsure, clean up after yourself, and above all, be respectful of the rules and culture of the facility.
Methods for managing TrainingIQ programming If you happen to miss a few training days, don’t fret. We’re always happy to help you identify a plan that will work best for your goals and timeline. Just shoot us a message in the app. If you do plan to complete a missed workout or two once you return home, however, simply mark the workout as “complete” in the app, so that it may save into your training history to be viewed at a later time.
Remember, this is just a simple guide for if you decide to train while away. There will be times where you will just want to (and maybe need to) take that vacation. If that’s the case, enjoy having time to yourself. View it as a necessary rest and recovery week, and trust that the routine you’ve established for yourself will still be there when you get home.