If fitting in your miles while also avoiding traffic jams and overcrowded buses sounds too good to be true, think again.
The run commute is one of the most efficient ways to fit in a workout, but it does take some advance planning. Follow these tips and you’ll be mastering the run commute in no time.
Plan Your Route1 of 7
Before attempting a run commute, look at some maps and find out if it's feasible. If you live 40 miles from the office, a run commute might be a little tougher. However, if you utilize local light rail, train or bus options you still might be able to run part of the way. If you're within easy running distance, look for routes that are well-lit and avoid busy highways. Bonus points if there are bathrooms and/or public transportation options along the way (in case you need to cut a run short).
Figure Out Your Shower Situation2 of 7
No one likes a smelly co-worker, so plan out how you'll get rid of the sweat. If your work place has a shower, that's an ideal scenario, but a close second would be a nearby gym or YMCA. If none of those are an option, considering running home from work in the evening.
Assemble Your Gear3 of 7
Many companies sell lightweight running backpacks perfect for carrying the essentials. If you run home from work, pack your running gear and leave your street clothes at the office until the next day. If, however, you want to run to work, you'll have to get creative. You can leave your clothes in a gym locker overnight (if that's allowed) or you can stash a bag at your desk the day before. Make a list and check it twice—you don't want to forget an essential item (like underwear!).
Strategize Your Fueling Plan4 of 7
If your office has a cafeteria, you can grab breakfast and lunch there the next day. If you usually pack a lunch, you'll have to bring extra the day before and stash it in the fridge. If you plan on run-commuting home from work, make sure to down an easily digestible snack to eat a few hours before you hit the road. Since energy levels often lag in the afternoon, a coffee and a banana with nut butter is the perfect combo.
Schedule Your Day Like a Pro5 of 7
The day before your run commute, figure out how long everything will take and build in a few extra minutes. If you have to be at your desk by 9 a.m., plan backwards from there. An example morning might look something like this:
6:30 a.m. — Wake up and drink coffee.
7 a.m. — Begin run.
8 a.m. — Finish run.
8:30 a.m. — Shower and dress at the office, gym, etc.
For an evening commute, you'll have a bit more flexibility, but make sure to pencil in your afternoon snack and allow yourself some time to get suited up for your run.
Be Flexible6 of 7
The run commute is a great way to double task, but it's always good to have a back-up plan. If you need to bail on your run halfway through, is there an alternate way to get home? If you forget an outfit essential, can you buy (or borrow) the item nearby?
A well-planned run commute can give you more hours in your day and make you a happier, healthier employee. And that's a win-win for all runners!