How to Get Your Running in During the Holidays
And make sure you’re packing for the climate at your destination, Ms. Milton said. “You don’t want something as simple as not having the right equipment to limit your ability to go out and do your run,” she said.
If you’re traveling and busy, you might not have the time or energy to do your regular workout. Make doing something a priority, even if it’s less than you’re used to. “If you’re used to going out and always doing a six-mile run, maybe do three miles of intervals instead,” Ms. Milton said.
This also might mean doing something other than running, like a hike that’s more accommodating to your family and friends’ fitness levels. What matters more is that you’re moving versus completing a specific workout. “Getting in any kind of exercise is beneficial,” she said.
If you’re trying to see a lot of people and know some of them are into running, too, you can sign up for a holiday-themed race, like a Turkey Trot run at Thanksgiving or a holiday lights run. That might mean mixing up your pace, but it lets you get in a workout and socialize at the same time.
Family Doesn’t Always Know Best
Anything can become a flash point during the holidays — your run included, especially if you’re the only person in your family who does it. “If you’re trying to stay committed to something that’s important to you, and it isn’t something your family does or understands, then your run tends to kick up old family dynamics,” said Theresa Herring, a licensed marriage and family therapist at Centered Connections in Evanston, Ill.
If you have a family member who resents your taking time away from the family to do something for yourself, “respond instead of react,” Ms. Herring said. “When we react, we tend to say something from frustration or anger or hurt, and when family members come at us for something that’s really important to us, it’s really easy to react from those places,” she said.
Instead, try to “take a moment so you can respond to them in a way that more aligns with the type of relationship you want to have with them.” If it’s a parent worried that you’re wearing yourself out, tell them how running makes you feel better, and that if you get in a run, you’ll be your best self for the rest of the day.