IT’S BEACH SEASON, BABY!!! To run or not to run at the beach, that is the question! Let’s tackle each possible answer.
So you’re not gonna run while you’re at the beach, huh? SLACKER. YOU SHOULD FEEL BAD ABOUT YOUR BAD CHOICE. YOU WILL FALL INTO A STATE OF UNFITNESS FROM WHICH YOU WILL NEVER RECOVER. (Editor’s note: None of this is true, and I am insanely jealous of those that have the mental fortitude to hang up their running shoes for a stretch. It’s actually a really good thing to do between race seasons. There is NOTHING wrong with voluntarily putting your running shoes away from a week or two. Enjoy your running-free vacation!!)
So you DO want to run while you’re at the beach? Hahahaha you must either not drink alcohol OR you enjoy making yourself suffer. I very much respect you both. Regardless of your approach, there are a couple nifty little things you can do at the beach to spice up your running.
The obvious is to actually run on the beach itself. I recommend hitting a sunrise or two if you’re East-coasting it. WEAR SHOES for the majority of your running time on the beach. Packed sand is more like concrete than most people realize. HOWEVER, I do recommend losing your shoes for a short stretch at the end of any beach run. Do some strides barefoot by the water, putting in 5-10 minutes without shoes. Speaking of running near the water…
End at least one run by jumping into the ocean to cool off. Ditch your shoes first to avoid getting too much sand in them. This is especially fun if there are other people around. Just come running up the beach, kick off your shoes, and hit the waves. I challenge you NOT to smile:)
Speaking of running barefoot: If you’re game to try something challenging and build a little strength, spend a little time running barefoot in the SOFT SAND. If you’ve never done this before, I’d recommend 10-15 minutes at a time.
No matter what choice you make about running while you’re spending some time at the beach, rest assured knowing that you’re making the right one.