I know the thought of running outside in the winter is not something you jump up and down about. Yes you could go running indoors on a boring treadmill, or maybe even on an indoor track.
But there are many benefits to running outside during the winter months. One of the benefits is you automatically burn more Calories. Because of the cold your body works harder and burns more calories.
If you are dressed properly, you will enjoy it! Promise...it’s very refreshing!
How to Dress:
Dress like it’s warmer. You want to be warm without sweating so much that you get a chill. The rule of thumb is to dress as if it is 20 degrees warmer. You will be slightly cool when you start. Ensure your ears are covered. You can wear a hat, headband or earmuffs. I suggest a brimmed hat if it is raining. Wear gloves; your hands and feet are likely to be the coldest, but your hands will warm up the fastest.
The Golden Rule: It’s better to be slightly cold and dry, than overly warm and sweating (which can freeze and lead to hypothermia). If you already feel toasty on your first mile, you’re probably overdressed.
Running in the dark:
We know that in the winter time it's typically dark in the morning and the sun sets earlier in the evening. If you are running in the dark, “Get Lit” with reflective, fluorescent gear. Don’t worry about being bright, you want that car, truck or biker to see you before it's too late to move.
Move around inside the house to warm your body up before stepping outdoors. Run up and down the stairs, jump some rope, or do 50 jumping jacks. The cold doesn’t feel so cold when you’re warm.
Be Flexible with Pace and Mileage:
Winter running is more about maintenance miles than speedwork, let me say that again, winter running is more about maintenance than speedwork. So don’t be so hard on yourself if you have that slower pace or you only did a short run. It all counts!. Your performance will decrease as the temperature drops.
Practice Slip Prevention: Frigid temperatures and precipitation can make icy paths on sidewalks. Check the threads on your shoes, if they are worn down, your running shoes will not give you any traction. I typically replace my running shoes in the fall to ensure I do not run into this problem. Be sure to go slower on icy days to avoid falling and becoming injured. Be sure to have a cell phone or cellular watch that you can call for help should you need it.
Have Fun: Most importantly enjoy the run, don’t let it be a chore. Waiting for the perfect conditions will never get anything done. It always looks worse through the window.
This to can be fun! It’s all about PERSPECTIVE!