We do not take many family vacations. Back when there was still a dad in the family unit and there were only four little ones under the age of five (doesn’t look nearly as daunting when I spell out those numbers), we drove cross country to visit my mom. That was the type of family vacation we took then.
After the end of the marriage and with six kids under the age of 12 or 13 or 14, the trips were much smaller. I would load them all in the car and head to HersheyPark for the day. Yes, I consider a three hour drive to an amusement park a day trip with six kids. But, more recently, family trips have circled around soccer tournaments and college visits. Well, two of the children (really hard to say as all are out of their teens but one nowadays) and I are heading to Myrtle Beach for a small vacation.
Myrtle Beach in February? Yes! That is a vacation but not the normal family vacation. You see I am running a marathon on Saturday of our trip. My youngest, 16 years of age, is doing a 100K bike tour on the Sunday of our trip. Planning is different for this type of a trip. I need certain clothing. Number 6 needs certain types of clothing. Number 6 needs his bike. I need energy gels and electrolyte drinks. We both need water. We both need sleep.
So what type of planning goes into a family trip like this? Not much. I did my research and booked a hotel. Unsure at that point in time who, or maybe more importantly how many, would be accompanying me, I have a suite with two double beds and a pull out sofa. It’s a plus that the hotel is on the ocean, although I am pretty sure my room is not on the ocean side of the hotel. It is an additional plus that the hotel is approximately at mile 10 of the marathon. Woot!
Next on the planning was food. I try to eat certain things before, during and after a run that is long – even though I have never run 26.2 miles before in my life (you read that right, never). I want my pre-race breakfast that I would have if I were at home. I want coffee. I want oatmeal and a bagel. I want my pre-race Gatorade01 which is on my shopping list as I type. I want my energy gels, in the flavors I like, that do not upset my stomach. These are also on my shopping list. I want my post race drink, Gatorade03. Again, on the shopping list. Can you see what I am doing this weekend, other than a couple of short runs?
I have places where we can all eat in Myrtle Beach. I have checked out a brew pub online. I have a friend whose family has an Italian restaurant. These are all in my phone or will be soon. I also have the GPS navigator charged and it will go in the car. I have printed directions to different places (I hate depending on one source when I am somewhere I am not familiar with). I am ready to go. Now it is the last of the taper and some visits with friends and then out the door Thursday night.