Running in the cold can hardly be described as fun. Cold weather is already a bummer, and having to exercise outside when it’s cold is even worse. Let’s be frank: with the genuine risk of windburn, chafing, and other uncomfortable physical hazards, running in cold weather is harsh. So how can we make running in the cold a little less painful and a little more enjoyable? Read on, and learn about some of the top tips for running in less-than-ideal winter weather.
Dress as if the weather is a bit warmer
The first tip for running in cold weather involves your winter workout wear. When you run, your body starts heating up pretty fast, so wearing all of your usual layers of winter clothing while running outside can be detrimental. The trick is to dress like it’s a bit warmer than what the weather is. That way, once you start running and your body heats up, you won’t be sweating and wishing you were in something a little more comfortable.
Do a warm up inside before heading out
Before you venture out into the cold, make sure you warm your body up by doing a good minute workout inside. The first key is to take it easy when you start. If your warm-up takes typically 10 minutes, take 20 instead. The second key to winter warm-ups is to do the activity you’re going to be doing (in this case, running) inside at a slower pace.
Warming up inside gets your body ready for the elements by increasing your blood flow and heart rate and warming up your body temperature. These are all crucial to making your winter workout a little more bearable.
Avoid frozen feet by layering up on socks
A common complaint with running in cold weather is that your toes begin to feel numb. A lot of people suffer from this, but that doesn’t mean you have to. There’s a simple solution available to solve this all-too-common problem. Simply wear multiple layers of regular socks to keep your feet nice and warm. Just be sure not to wear socks that separate your toes, as these will only make them colder.
Know what to wear and how to layer
In addition to the advice above about dressing warmer than the weather, you also need to know how to dress for the weather, period.
Here are some tips regarding what to wear and how to layer up when it’s cold outside:
- Wear windproof briefs when it’s colder than 40 degrees
- Wear gloves and a beanie to keep your fingers and ears warm. Try sticking hand warmers in your gloves for a little added warmth.
- If you’re actually serious about running in the cold, invest in a pair of cold-weather running tights, like Under Armour Cold Gear tights.
- Make sure you know how to layer correctly. Your base layer should be made of a sweat-wicking fabric like polyester, your middle layer should be fleece or a synthetic material that’s a bit thicker, and your top layer should be wind and waterproof, so you’re protected from the elements.
- If you’re reading this from Louisiana, don’t worry about paying too much attention to these rules!
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At All Inclusive Health, we’re here to help you with your running routine, with run coaches available to advise you on any number of running-related topics, including running in the cold. Whether you’re new to running or trying to reach a specific running goal, All Inclusive Health offers a variety of running plans, including Run Coaching to help you achieve your running goals at your own pace, as well as Race Training to help prepare you for your big day. No matter what stage you’re at, contact All Inclusive Health now and get the running help you need today!