March 2, 2018

Take an Active International Vacation with STRIVE Trips


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by STRIVE Trips who offered me a discount for their programs. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own.

If you’re anything like me, you’ve found that a great way to satisfy your sense of wanderlust is by taking race-cations. I’ve ran some races and planned some trips around the country and Canada in the past few years including the Seawheeze Half Marathon in Vancouver, Ragnar Las Vegas, and the Chicago Marathon (multiple times!).  

Ragnar Las Vegas home stretch!
This year and the next I think it’s time to add some more stamps to my passport and get out of North America. I was excited to recently be connected with this awesome company STRIVE Trips which organizes trips for adults featuring a balance of cultural immersion, active exploration and sightseeing, as well as daily options for athletic training (a.k.a RUNNING!). Don’t worry, if you aren’t a runner you can choose to walk or bike these excursions (or even skip out to spend time as you please).
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For 2018, STRIVE Trips is offering two adult programs-one to Kenya and one to Peru. 

Let’s be honest, a mix of running, eating amazing food and travelling to a new country sounds like a perfect vacation to me! It’s pretty much what I do anyways, although a bit more heavy on the food and less so on the running part. Planning an international trip can be intimidating so it’s awesome that STRIVE Trips takes care of all the planning and also provides 24-hour-a-day support on the ground in the country and from the US based staff.

For the athletic portion on each trip there is a daily opportunity to get out and exercise. You can walk, bike, or run as much or as little as you want because the group has a van trail behind the group that can pick you up whenever you’re done. There are also at least 2 staff members running with the group. Besides just running in a new country, there are some awesome opportunities such as staying at the high altitude training center run by Olympian & World Record holder Lornah Kiplagat on the trip in Kenya.  LITERALLY running with Kenyans like a BOSS. Running with and talking to elite Kenyan runners is an amazing opportunity for any amateur or serious runner.
 
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Running with Kenyan runners
Besides the athletic portion, the trip organized by STRIVE Trips includes everything but your flights, meaning it includes noted meals, lodging, transportation, and activities. STRIVE Trips makes sure you get all the fun of sightseeing and cultural immersion of a country. For example with the Kenya program you also get to participate in a tea ceremony with a local family or spend time at local zoos along with a 3-day safari. It’s on my bucket list to go on a safari and visit a giraffe sanctuary so I definitely was hyped to read that.  

The Peru program includes fun activities including visiting Machu Picchu, zip-lining, and hiking in the Incan Cloud Forest. Back to the food, the Peru trip also includes a chocolate class where you learn about how chocolate is made and then get to mix together your own style of chocolate as well as a Pisco Sour making class which is the national drink of Peru. SIGN ME UP! 

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Pisco Sour class in Peru
Besides programs for adults, STRIVE Trips has unique service-learning programs designed for high school and college students. These trips mix running, service-learning projects, and adventure in an international setting. If I was in high school this would have been maybe the COOLEST way for me to get service learning hours for graduation.

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A photo from a recent STRIVE trip in Peru on an excusion
You can find more information about the trip to Kenya in July here or the trips to Peru in May or August here. The max group size for the trips is 12 participants so get more info and get signed up! With my career shift and current planned vacations, a STRIVE Trips program may not be in the cards for me for 2018, but I’m hoping to definitely take advantage in 2019.

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