Cold Weather Running Tips

We have begun the time of year where many folks are discouraged by the cold temperatures and just swear off running until March. While that’s good and well, the problem with doing that is that once March (or whenever you start back) rolls around, you try to run again and remember that running is a jealous mistress and it can SUCK when you haven’t been at it in awhile. Instead of doing that this year, why don’t you just keep running? I know…it’s cold and cold weather running can be tough. But I’ve got you covered. Here’s how I’m surviving freezing cold runs this winter:

1.Make a date. I do 90% of my runs with others (mostly because running with a buddy is awesome!). In the winter, that number is about 95%. When it’s cold it’s even easier than normal to bail on a run. However, it’s never easy to bail on a friend or a financial commitment (hello, marathon training program!)

2.Get some gear. When it’s cold, you need to dress the part. Keep in mind though that there are few things worse than overheating on a long run. I typically dress as if the weather is 20 degrees warmer than it actually is. This keeps me warm without overheating. If you are a bit chilly before you start running, that is a good thing. If you are completely toasty while you are standing still, chances are you will overheat.

3.Buy hand warmers – these have been key for me this winter. Keeping my hands warm is crucial – also I have had many runs this winter where the cold temps froze the water in my camelbak tube — solution: hold the tube with my hands (which are warm from the hand warmers) and the water returns to liquid form!

4.This is what I wear in below freezing weather:

  • Tights and a long sleeve shirt –> that is my base level. I’ll build on this base for most of my winter long runs (except when the weather is freakishly warm like it’s supposed to be on Saturday).
  • Shorts or pants over my base tights –> keeps my bum warm. Usually my Oiselle rogas are the shorts I’m wearing over my base tights – you can find them here: Oiselle Running Women’s Roga Short
  • A long sleeve tech shirt over the long sleeve shirt.
  • Gloves + something over my ears; THIS IS A MUST. If you fingers and ears are cold, you will be cold your entire run. Trust me. I usually take off the gloves about 2 miles in, but I never ditch them because the weather can always turn.
  • Don’t forget to bring your hydration. Because it’s cold, you won’t feel like you need the same amount of water that you do in the summer, but you absolutely do!

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