The way we see it - if you’re going to train for months, deny yourself all those bad-for-you-but-taste-so-good foods, virtually put your entire social life on hold, and push your mind, body and soul for that next personal record - you deserve to go somewhere awesome when you’re finally ready for that marathon. Enter the runcation.
But why completely disrupt your training routine when you arrive at that hotel? The days leading up to your race might be the most pivotal, and suddenly scrapping that training routine could have disastrous results. Enter Stay Alfred.
Unlike that hotel room, Stay Alfreds are your home away from home when you’re on the road. With a full kitchen, plenty of room to stretch your legs, plus an in-unit washer/dryer - you can keep your pre-marathon routine on your runcation when you stay with us in the city.
No one has perfected the art of the runcation like avid runner and blogger Audrey Springer of Running the Alley. We got to know her when she recently stayed with us at our new Stay Alfreds at 505 in Nashville; she’s well-traveled, uncommonly kind and an inspiration for anyone setting their sites on simply being better. We asked her to share a few thoughts on runcations - here’s what she had to say:
A Runcation Recap from Audrey Springer
“My heart dropped the second that long awaited alarm sounded off."
"I'd been waiting on this day for months."
"A day that I had replayed in my mind more times than I can count."
“I ate my toast in the hotel, nodded off to the concierge, and stepped off to face the fate with my coach. Today was the day I would run the biggest race of my life."
“The metro ride seemed longer than yesterday, the bus ride to the start felt never ending, and I wiped my nervous palms on the old sweatshirt I planned to leave at the start line."
“Then I laughed, looked up, and saw the dawn rising over the big city buildings. This is what I live for. This is what makes every mile I had ran over the last 16 weeks worth it."
“In middle of this unfamiliar town, while my feet pounded the pavement as fast as they could, and as my breathing seemed to get deeper, I was chasing a dream."
“In the days prior, I had driven twelve hours in a car, walked more than I probably should to view a city I had only seen in photos, and ate the most incredible Italian food I had ever tasted."
“Before these last few days though, I had put more running miles in than I had ever run, imagined taking a left on Boylston Street and seeing the marathon finish line more times that I care to admit, and counted down the days until my first real "runcation" (*running vacation). "
“I had been planning this runcation for months. To be honest, I have been planning this exact runcation for years. It was a bucket list race, a getaway race, and a race that I had to qualify to get into.”
“After signing up, I reserved the hotel room downtown to absolutely experience all the hype of this incredible race weekend. I studied every bit of the course until I knew where the start line that would begin the journey was, where the hill that would try and break me to a walk was, and even where we would take that well deserved finishers’ photo.”
“With all the logistics figured out, months passing, weather stalking, the car ride with a two hour time change now over, the touring of the city done, and the big race happening in only ten hours, I sat in the kitchen of my hotel. I ate a meal I was familiar with, I laid out my singlet, and I freshened up my racing shoes.”
“I set my alarm and laid in bed imagining what the next day could possibly hold."
“Now, I've run around an island, I've finished on a 50 yard line, and I've even seen the countryside of Ireland by foot. Each and every race was a celebration and every one was more than I could have imagined.
“Runcations have taken me all over the world and back. One thing stays true though, the memories will last me a lifetime.”
Sounds pretty awesome, right? Start planning out that training schedule - below is the 2018 Marathon Guide in all Stay Alfred cities:
- Sunday, March 18 - Publix Georgia Marathon, Half Marathon, 5K
- Sunday, June 10 - Hotlanta Half Marathon
- Sunday, October 28 - Atlanta Halloween Half Marathon & 5K
- Sunday, February 18 - Austin Marathon & Half Marathon
- Saturday, March 10 - ZOOMA Austin Women's Half Marathon/10K/5K
- Monday, April 16 - B.A.A. Boston Marathon
- Sunday, May 27 - Boston's Run to Remember Half Marathon
- Sunday, July 22 - Rock n' Roll Chicago Half Marathon
- Sunday, October 7 - Chicago Marathon
- Sunday, March 18 - The Big D Texas Marathon
- Sunday, March 25 - Rock n' Roll Dallas Half Marathon
- Sunday, December 9 - Dallas White Rock Marathon and Half Marathon
- Sunday, October 21 - Denver Rock N' Roll Half Marathon
- Saturday, December 1 - St. Jude Memphis Marathon & Half Marathon
- Saturday, March 3 - Tom King Half Marathon & 5K
- Sunday, April 29 - Country Music Marathon & Half Marathon
- Saturday, November 10 - Nashville Marathon & Half Marathon
- Sunday, March 4 - Mardi Gras Marathon & Half Marathon
- Sunday, September 16 - Rock N' Roll Half Marathon
- Saturday, November 17 - Philadelphia Half Marathon
- Sunday, November 18 - Philadelphia Marathon
- Saturday, February 24 - Phoenix Marathon
- Sunday, October 7 - Portland Marathon and Half Marathon
- Sunday, December 2 - San Antonio Marathon and Half Marathon
- Sunday, June 3 - Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon & Half Marathon
- Saturday, April 7 - Publix Savannah Women's Half Marathon & 5K
- Sunday, November 4 - Savannah Rock n Roll Marathon and Half Marathon
- Sunday, June 10 - Rock n' Roll Seattle Marathon & Half Marathon
- Saturday, March 10 - Rock n’ Roll USA Marathon & Half Marathon
Runcations really are the best of both worlds - you get to explore a city while hitting the pavement with the locals and then celebrate a race well run with the sights, sounds and tastes of a new city. The only question left is - where will you be crossing that finish line?