It's a very slow process - two steps forward, one step back - but I'm inching in the right direction. - Rob Reiner

August 05, 2011

Working Out on Vacation

Just got back from my vacation last night.  I had a WONDERFUL time.  Vacations are amazing.  They truly help rest the mind and soul.  I feel refreshed!

The only bad thing about vacation is they get you out of your normal routine.  And with my my Olympic distance triathlon just a few short weeks away, I knew I had to stay at least moderately active while on vacation.  I didn't do as much as I normally would do, but I did stay active and I'm happy about that.  And Saturday and Sunday I will still get in my normal long run and bike, and hopefully a swim as well.

Luckily for me my friend Sam is training for her first half marathon, so she was totally up for some running or other activities while we were gone.  The weather in Hot Springs, AR was even hotter than it was in Kansas City.  Every day the actual temperature ranged from about 108 - 112 with a good dose of humidity added on just for the fun of it.  So we knew there would be no sleeping in on our vacation.

Some of our delicious meals at Rolando's (we ended up eating here twice)

We arrived Sunday night and didn't do much besides get checked in to our hotel and eat some dinner at Rolando's - a Latin fusion restaurant.  The dinner was delicious!  I honestly couldn't believe how good the food was in Hot Springs.  Monday am we woke up bright and early at 6am to beat the heat.  We headed out the door and did a nice 3 mile run.  It was fun just seeing new and different scenery.  I came back and attempted to swim in the hotel pool.  I had no idea it would be so small.  It took 7 strokes to go from end to end and the 7th stroke your hands were on the bottom of the pool because it was only 3 feet deep.  It was literally like swimming on a treadmill.  Oh well, at least I attempted it.  I estimated I did a short swim of about 500 meters or so.

The rest of the day was spent browsing some local shops, and then we headed to one of the old bathhouses for a wonderful spa day.....ahhhhh heaven.  I still had some major tightness in both of my calves from my triathlon on Saturday, so a massage was exactly what I needed!

The bathhouses were really beautiful.  There is a whole row of them that were built in the 1920s.
The next morning we were planning to run, but we were going to spend the entire day at Magic Springs and Crystal Falls - an amusement/water park.  We figured we would be walking and swimming all day in the 110 degree heat, so we probably would be ok to skip the workout.  We spent most of our time at the water park due to the extreme heat.  We stayed about 6 or 7 hours.  We had a blast.  We were completely exhausted by the time we got back to our hotel, so I felt like we definitely got some exercise in.

Having a nice dinner after a long day of fun

My friend Sam is 6ft tall (and amazingly beautiful), she makes me look very short.
The next morning we knew we would be heading out of town and I really wanted to get some hiking in before we left so we ran to the hiking trail from our hotel (which was about a mile) and then went on a 4 mile hike and then walked back the one mile to the hotel.  The hike was tough.  I definitely used some muscle groups I hadn't used in awhile.  My butt was so sore the next day!  The hike was beautiful.  We didn't pass many people on the hike (it was too hot to hike for most I think), but when we did come across a couple we thought we would ask them to take our photo.  So I asked, "hey would you mind snapping a quick pic"?  To which they replied, no problem, and immediately snuggled up for me to take a picture of them.  I thought I was going to die from holding the laughter in, but I didn't want to embarrass them, so I took their picture and then politely asked if they could now take ours.  Sam and I walked away dying of laughter.

Hot Springs flowing off the moutain

Sam and I had to work really hard during our hike moving trees & rocks out of the way

Our random friends we met :)

Hanging off the side of a rock.....

Oh, not really

After our hike, Sam and I showered, ate some breakfast and headed out of Hot Springs.  I dropped her off in Fayetteville where she lives and proceeded to the lovely Bella Vista, AR to stay one last night at a little Bed and Breakfast up in the countryside.  It was really beautiful.  There was only me and one other girl staying there that night, so it was very quiet.  I did some walking around the property, but not much and headed to bed early.  The next morning I decided to go for a swim before I left.  I started to get in the pool and I asked the owner, um is that a big worm or is that a snake.  Oh, yes, dear that's just a little ring neck snake I'll get it out of the pool for you.  UGH!!  It wasn't very big, but I'm sure glad I didn't swim with it!  This pool was much bigger - about 13 strokes from end to end.  I estimated about a 1000 meter swim!

Although I certainly didn't get in my normal amount of running, biking, and swimming I feel like I stayed active and that's important.  Now it's back to my routine.  I am looking forward to some longer workouts this weekend.

Sorry if I bored you with my vacation stories, but I did try to throw working out in there.

Do you workout while on vacation?  Or do you just use the time to relax?


  1. Ha, that looks like a lot of fun! I need a vacation. I'm always good at keeping my running as planned while on vacation, but with me doing only running that is easy. Have a great weekend!

  2. If I got in a pool and there was a snake it it it would be all over. Is that a dangerous snake? And people wonder why I like cold and snow!

    That is too funny that those people thought you wanted to take a picture of them. Are they from Mars? People ask this all the time. At least they were pleasant. A guy ignored me yesterday when I asked.

  3. The pictures are gorgeous! What a fun and relaxing trip. I think you did great on the workouts. Seriously a lot better than I would have done.

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  4. I love girl trips. I am glad that you had a great time and the food does look delish!

    I sucked at working out on vacations or when traveling for work. I really need to work on that since I will be traveling more for work!

    Have a great weekend!

  5. So glad you had fun with your friend and way to stay active too! Is it weird that I am considering a solo a hiking/yoga/spa retreat? Your bed and breakfast stay reminded me of that.

  6. Looks and sounds like an amazing trip! I love hiking too--would probably be my second choice to running, IF i lived out west. Anyhow, you will be fine even if you missed a few workouts. You've got a great base.

  7. Those pictures are hilarious! My sis and I always do wacky things like that when we are on vacation.

    Glad you had a refreshing vacation! (Oh, and that Rolando's food looks to die for!)

  8. This looks like a wonderful vacation. Love the pictures! I'm with Johann...I can usually keep up with my runs pretty well while on vacation, but, if I had to throw in swimming and biking, it probably wouldn't go so well.

  9. I have yet to master the art of working out while on vacation, so mad props to you.

    And I love the pictures!

  10. thats awesome that you stayed active while on vaca, unlike me a few weeks ago LOL. looks like you had a ton of fun, and what beautiful places you visited!

    i had to giggle about the 7 stroke pool. my husband keeps hounding me over cancelling our Y membership because we have a pool at home. its like a 5 stroke pool....maybe LOL!

  11. What a great vacation!!! I originally assumed that the couple from the picture incident would be young, I was surprised. That is sooo very funny!

  12. Glad you had a good time. I've only recently started working out on vacation. You did a good job of making it fun. Welcome home.

  13. Looks like you had a great vacation! That food looks delicious!

    I like to workout on vacation, usually. I try to pick a hotel with a good fitness center so I can get my runs in, then I feel a little less guilty about all the food I eat :)

  14. Looks like you had a great time Michael. I love the trails, can't wait to do another KC Trail Nerds event this fall. I am signed up for the Hy-Vee Tri, it will be my first olympic distance also. Good luck with the training and thanks for the blog comment!

  15. What a fun time! That picture taking episode had me stumped. Maybe this is a long running joke they've been playing on people for years now :D

  16. Congrats on your race PR!! That's crazy about the lightning!

    I try to run while on vacation, but like you said, if we have a few days of walking around, I don't worry about missing it. Looks like a great time!

  17. That sounds like a great vacation. It is great you had a workout buddy too! Sometimes on vaca I feel guilty leaving friends for a workout!

    I can't wait to hear about your olympic tri!

  18. If I got in a pool and there was a snake it it it would be all over. Is that a dangerous snake? And people wonder why I like cold and snow! That is too funny that those people thought you wanted to take a picture of them. Are they from Mars? People ask this all the time. At least they were pleasant. A guy ignored me yesterday when I asked.