I am the crazy girl who spends the winter running outside. From the year I started running consistently (sometime in 2009), I have run outside in the winter. There is something to be said about being out in nature no matter what the temperature is. But, I have this problem where I cannot run on the treadmill. I’m not sure if I’ve ever run more than three miles on the treadmill. Plus, running on the treadmill is worse for me than bundling up in all my winter clothes and going outside.
As you know, I was a high school ski racer. So I’m kind of used to being outside in the winter. Especially in the Midwest. We cancelled ski practice only a couple times in 4 years. So running outside never seemed weird to me, even on snow days in college I would go out for a few miles.
Once I moved to Denver, I learned that snow doesn’t stay on the ground from Nov/Dec to April. It was a refreshing change, and in Denver, I’m able to run outside most of the year. Sometimes, there are a few days when the sidewalks don’t get plowed well enough to hit the trails, but I make do.
Oh, I also got these great new shoes from Boulder Running Company!
Tips for Winter Running Outside
1. Dress 10 degrees warmer than it is outside. In the winter, I’m usually in a hat/headband, gloves, long sleeve, jacket, pants, socks, and shoes. Sometimes, I even wear a thin neckwarmer or buff to block the wind.
2. Wear a headlamp! When I run in the mornings, its usually dark :(, so I wear a headlamp. No the most glamorous look, but it works! Check out your local running store, for headlamps, they are pretty inexpensive.
3. Drink water or tea when you get up, this will jumpstart your body and make it easier to get out the door. If you are pre-workout coffee person, make sure to keep that up.
4. Plan to workout with someone, this will hold you accountable and make sure you get out of that nice warm bed.
5. Sleep in your workout clothes. Hey, its already cold in the winter, so save on some heating costs, and wear your clothes to bed. This will help you get up.
6. Plan your workouts for which days you will be going outside and which days you will be hitting the gym. It helps me to know that I’m only going outside 2 or 3 days a week.
7. Be appreciative and thankful that you are able to run. I remind myself that it is a blessing and a gift to be able to run. Some people have chronic injuries and are not able to do this. Also, some people don’t have the fitness level to be able to run outside. I feel thankful for the ability and the desire to be fit.
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