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Looking for Exercise at Conferences?

January 14, 2007

Let us be honest: when you’re at SXSWi (and other conferences for that matter), you pretty much drink at some social event or another every night. That leaves almost everyone hungover to some degree every day. So, how do you deal with that?

If you’re already an active person, then I suggest continuing to stay active: hit the gym in the hotel for some early morning activity, or even better exercise outside! Run on the treadmill, do something on the elliptical trainer, or even the stationary bike. It will be a bit tougher if you’re hungover but sweat it out and drink lots of water – it will help get the alcohol out of your system and make you that much fresher for the rest of the day.

I’ll be speaking at a few conferences and doing some workshops over the next few months (I’ll post them in a separate announcement soon). I need to keep training while I’m away from home, so I’m looking for some people to work out with – running and swimming mostly.

If you’re going to be at Web Directions North in Vancouver in a few weeks or SXSWi in two months and you want to do some training while there, bring your gear.

And, yes, I am serious about this – I would rather train with someone that completely on my own and I have a lot to do: I need to run at least 4 times, swim twice and cycle twice while in Austin and run 6 times, cycle 5 times and swim 5 times while I’m in Vancouver (I head there Jan 31st).

Let me know here in the comments if you’re interested so that I know to look for you and maybe we can sort something out in advance.

18 Responses

Comment by Brian Duchek — Jan 14 2007 @ 4:50 pm

This sounds like a great idea. I’m not keen to try and hit the slopes after WDN totally hung over and toxified.

I’ll do a little training with you if you’re interested in doing AM sessions. Where could we meet up? Swimming might be nice, although I’ve never done a formal swimming workout. Could you recommend a starting point?


Comment by Cameron Adams — Jan 14 2007 @ 7:10 pm

I normally hit the gym at 3AM, or some weird hour.

I’m always keen for a ride though Derek. It’d be a good way to see Austin.

Comment by Christopher Warren — Jan 14 2007 @ 11:01 pm

This is a great idea – I’ll be attending SXSWi for the first time – my first time at any conference other than going for sales – and I’ve wondered about the effects of 4 or 5 days of sitting and drinking. I’d definitely be interested in taking part in this in Austin.

Comment by Frances Berriman — Jan 15 2007 @ 4:21 am

You make me feel so unfit and unmotivated, Derek!

Comment by Matthew Pennell — Jan 15 2007 @ 4:41 am

I’d be up for some running at SxSW – 6 miles or under – but I’m not really a gym kind of guy.

I was wondering at the end of last year whether it would be feasible to stage some kind of charity run in Austin, like a 3-mile thing on the Sunday morning or something, but I figured it would probably involve getting permission from the mayor so I decided to forget about it…

Comment by feather — Jan 15 2007 @ 5:27 am

@Brian: definitely morning sessions; not sure where to meetup, but I’m staying at the Hampton downtown; as for a swimming workout, I’m not sure – I swim three mornings a week, but I have a coach telling me what to do. I’m sure I can find some good workouts online

@Cam: I was thinking that I’d cycle mostly in the gym at the hotel, but I’m up for renting some bikes and going on a tour. I’ll keep you posted on that. What are your travel dates?

@Christopher: glad to hear you’re interested too. I’m keen, even if we don’t go too hard or too far, its more than not doing anything

@Frances: you’re waaaay fitter than I am, and this was supposed to make you feel motivated, not unmotivated!

@Matthew: the runs I have scheduled during SXSW are two 45 minute faster paced runs and one 1-1.5 hour long slow distance runs, so we should be good. About how long will it take you to do the 6 miles? (just so I know what kind of pace we’re at)

Comment by feather — Jan 15 2007 @ 8:07 am

@Brian: Whoops. Just realized you’ll be at WDN and not SXSW, so disregard my comment about which hotel in Austin you’re staying at :)

If you’re staying at the Renaissance in Vancouver, then we can use that as a starting point…

Comment by Matthew Pennell — Jan 16 2007 @ 3:52 am

6 miles = 50 minutes or thereabouts (although I’ve just started training again so that should improve by March).

Might be up for renting bikes as well, as long as we’re not talking 50mph freeway races…

Comment by mattymcg — Jan 17 2007 @ 6:12 pm

I’d definitely be up for some swimming during SXSW Derek. Might be persuaded to do some cycling too. My left knee generally doesn’t deal well with extended periods of running, but I’ll see.

Comment by James — Jan 17 2007 @ 6:27 pm

I ran at SXSW one year, by myself. Wow, was that ever hard. Humid in March after snow in Toronto! You may not want to get too ambitious…There’s a nice trail along the water that I think is marked (in miles, alas).

But, I might be interested. I’ll bring my stuff, am staying at the Omni. That being said, I haven’t run since mid-December (eek!) and since I have an 8K race scheduled for early April, I’ll need to get in shape.

Comment by Brian — Jan 24 2007 @ 11:23 am

I’d love a training partner at WDN. I am training for my second sprint tri in April, and find it hard to balance the evening events at conferences with the training schedule.

Like you said, I usually end up sweating out the drinks from the night before.

Comment by Sheri Bigelow — Feb 03 2007 @ 7:33 pm

Derek, will you be skiing after WDN?

Comment by Mike Stickel — Feb 04 2007 @ 6:11 pm

Great advice! Nothing better than working out to fix that hangover. Though it’s pretty hard to get into that workout :^)

I’ll be in Austin this year and I plan on working out everyday except Sunday. I usually hit up the elliptical machine for 20 minutes on cardio days (following the Body for Life program) and I’m staying at the Hyatt Regency. If we can coordinate it would be great to workout with someone for a change.

Comment by feather — Feb 04 2007 @ 11:28 pm


Derek, will you be skiing after WDN?

Not too likely, though I am making the trip. I’ve arranged for a snowshoeing expedition on Friday and a cross-country skiing guided tour on Saturday. And on both of those days I’ll be headed back to the Microsoft party for all of us…

@Mike: lets definitely try to hook up for something at SXSW. I think there will be a group of us that plan on going – the more the merrier!

Comment by Mike Stickel — Feb 05 2007 @ 10:08 am

Sweet. I’m looking forward to it.

Comment by Gordon — Feb 05 2007 @ 6:20 pm

If you are looking to run at SXSW, you should definitely run around Town Lake (the big lake/river in the middle of Austin). Just keep heading south (from downtown) until you hit the river. It is either a 3,5,7 or 10 mile run, depending on your choice of crossover points. The best part is that you will not be alone, the part from Congress to MoPac is always full of attractive, young, athletic people. Let me know if you want to go running. I live just off of the trail and run around it every other day.

map of the trail:

Comment by Brian — Mar 07 2007 @ 9:36 am

Great idea! I was having the same socialize at night/work out in the morning dilemma. I’ll be at SXSW from March 9-17, and would love to join along for some runs and get to know Austin.

Comment by Kathryn Featherstone — Apr 04 2007 @ 12:29 pm

so I was just looking at this and wondering how the training actually went? on your trips? ha ha