Getting away and having a non-triathlon weekend vacation is just fine in-season and trust us, everyone will survive. In fact, we think sometimes it’s just what is needed for a bit of rejuvenation and is actually great for everyone, including the triathlete and the family.
The first step, though, is actually leaving home. We do not recommend a staycation for this getaway. Staying at home where the bike and running shoes reside is a huge mistake. If they are in sight, the urge to just take a little spin or get the legs moving is way too strong. Leave and leave all the equipment at home.
Here is a list of five must haves and five must have nots for a successful non-triathlon weekend. These hold true whether you are bringing kids or it’s just the two of you…
- Healthy food…You do not want to mess with gut health. Repairing a gut can take weeks and this is not something any of us want to deal with with our triathlete. If visiting a new location, plan ahead places to eat based on your normal routine and food types. Make sure that if you’re staying at a hotel with breakfast included that they use real eggs, not poured eggs. Pack an emergency food bag just in case. We find it’s also helpful to stay on our 3 meals 2 snack schedule when traveling.
- A very comfortable room and or space to relax…Make sure you’re taking time for the family to reconnect and let everyone just be.
- Activities to enjoy…A triathlete family is an active family and no matter what, they all need to be active. Make sure there are hiking trails, a pool, a beach, or other fun activities for the family to enjoy.
- Comfortable beds…During training season, make sure you know your destination well. Read reviews or call ahead. We are very honest about the type of bed preferred and often, larger brand hotels will have options. The age of a mattress can make a huge difference, too. It is better to be safe than contend with a few weeks of back issues while training.
- The mindset…Honestly, this is the hardest part and it must come from a whole family perspective. Talk about it first with your triathlete and assure they can mentally get away. Once this is clear, have a family sit down and explain there is no training going on this getaway and set your plans as a group.
MUST HAVE NOTS
- Exercise room…The urge is just too great to get up and go before the family wakes up.
- Leave your training gear at home, including running shoes…This is a must. Do not even let your triathlete say they are just bringing the running shoes in case the kids want to hike. NO, they do not hike in their running shoes. Have them bring a different pair of sneakers.
- Pool that has lap lanes…A pool is great and a lot of fun, but it should not be big enough for any type of lap swimming. If you are at a beach, be sure it is understood that it is for play only and no open water swims are permitted. Roped areas are best if at a beach destination.
- Late night activities…Stay on your plan. A weekend away should include a schedule that works with your normal routine. Make sure you do not stay up too late and throw your whole next week off. Getting back on a 5AM wake up call after a weekend full of late nights is hard. Trust us!
- Too much drinking…Be smart and be sure to enjoy yourself, but not too much. It becomes very easy when relaxing to overindulge. Not only won’t you feel well the next day and may have gut issues, but this can lead to wasted family time, which is kind of why you’re getting away in the first place. Think about what you partake in during your training season and adjust for your weekend indulgences appropriately.
Keeping these must have nots and must haves in mind, you can be assured that everyone will be thrilled to have a non-triathlon weekend.