Last week, we blogged about how to keep your motivation to run in the cold winter temperatures. It seems like our Wednesdays have been the coldest day of the week – every week – so far, but this week we were nearly around 30 degrees during the run! Can someone say “heatwave?”
Anyhow, let’s say you found your motivation to run in the winter has returned and you’re coming to Wednesday run club every week (nice to meet you!). What do you wear to stay warm while running, and how do you run safely in the winter?
1. Think like an onion. That means LAYERS, not tears. Wear a tight, sweat-wicking layer near your skin and a wind-resistant, water-resistant layer on the outside. Wear more than one layer so if you start to sweat, you can peel the outer layers off.
2. Protect your face and phalanges. Wrap a scarf around your face; invest in some wool socks and wear a couple pair of gloves if needed. Unfortunately, some of us will have cold hands and feet regardless, but they should be warming up at least 2 miles into your run.
3. Drink water. Just because you’re not sweating like it’s summer doesn’t mean you should neglect staying hydrated.
4. Drag your feet. OK, maybe don’t drag them, but shorten your stride to keep your center of gravity close to the ground. If you’re running in ice and snow, find fresh snow pockets to run in. Even though it feels like you’re slogging through sand, you’ll have more traction than if you run on packed, icy snow. Bonus: You’ll build more endurance!
5. Warm up after your cool down. When your run is complete, try not to stick around outside in your cold sweaty clothes. Take a warm shower, thaw out, and put on some soft, comfy layers. Drink a hot cocoa. You earned it.