This is sort of a follow up to my “things to love about winter running” post on Tuesday.
I still run outside in the wintertime because if I didn’t—I would be a stir-crazy mad woman!! For any runner training for the Boston Marathon, or any other spring marathon, you know that you will have to do at least a little running outside. I feel like people are always asking me if I still run through the winter so I thought I would give you a little info about how I survive it!
1) Right when I come in from my run, I change out of my clothes. I get SUPER hot right when I come inside the house and feel like I can’t breathe..but within ten minutes, I’m already freezing cold. I change quickly out of my running clothes, or hop right in the shower! I have always felt like this helps to keep me from getting sick—cold/damp clothes keep the runner cold and damp.
2.)Watch out for those unstable surfaces. I wear Yaktrax when necessary. And I’m super careful on an unknown surface. When in doubt, walk through the icy/snowy patches.
3.)Layer it up! I’m THE QUEEN of layers. On any given cold weather day you can find me in a long sleeve shirt (or two) , my jacket, tights, running pants, and compression socks! Oh, and a hat and gloves and a scarf. All that effort just to enjoy the outdoors….
4.)I’m really careful in the dark. Since it gets dark at 4 and I get home at 3:45, I have to make sure I use headlamps and lots of bright, reflective clothing. The worst idea ever is for you to go running, outside, in dark/unreflective clothing. You might as well lay down in traffic if you are going to do that because you are asking for an unfortunate incident!
5.) I shorten my stride considerably in the winter time. This helps me minimize my potential for falling! (because I tend to be VERY clumsy!)
6.) Sometimes I give up and just run on the old mill. I admit it, I get lazy. And if I’m starting a run in “full dark” than I tend to stick to the treadmill to keep my husband happy(he gets nervous for some reason;)). There are a ton of local gyms in my area too, and I’m also considering getting a membership for only $9.99 a month. . .On the days where my own treadmill makes me sad, I can meet SIL at the gym and we can run side by side!!! #bonus
1.) you have to be extra super super careful in the dark. Headlamps, reflective gear, blinking lights, knuckle lights….all of these are your friend. USE THEM. During the winter months, I tend to stick to more main roads vs. back roads because I feel they are well taken care of, maintained nicely, and have better lighting. There is nothing worse than being on a dark road when suddenly a car drives by you and suddenly you are blinded. #annoying.
(super cool here in my headlamp!)
2.) Snow and ice will slow you down, considerably. But think about how fast you will be in the spring!
3.) Sometimes winter running makes me CRAZY sore. The muscles I use to control my movements are exaggerated in the winter months as I play my favorite game of “lets try not to fall today.” (best game ever? NOT)
4.) Whether you are doing a cold weather race, or just a regular run, try to remember that you will need to do a longer warmup because your muscles will take longer to reach their full warmed-up potential.
And most importantly….
5. Try to remember that winter running, just like summer running, takes an adjustment period. Your bodies will adjust to the colder temps and it won’t be as hard to push yourself out the door. Like anything in life, practice makes perfect!!
How do you survive winter running? Tips?