Are you in a colder climate thinking, “I gotta go where there ain’t any snow…I gotta go where it’s warm!”? Soon enough those temperatures will warm up and you’ll be enjoying boat drinks on your patio, but for now, it’s February, the groundhog called for 6 more weeks of winter, and you can only dream of running or walking in a tropical location because it’s 30 degrees outside. So until the weather turns, here are six winter weather running tips so the freezing temps don’t hurt your workout flow or your Run to Margaritaville training schedule:
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Boat drinks are great when you are relaxing, but it is important to continue hydrating with water in the winter, just as you would in the summer. Even though the temperature is drastically different, it is likely that you are losing the same amount of water in the winter as you do in the summer. This is one of the most missed items as so many athletes tend to dehydrate in the winter. Remember to drink your water even if you don’t feel thirsty.
Protect your feet. You need to make sure your soles will be flip flop ready! Wear shoes that don’t have a lot of mesh to keep water out of your shoes. Be sure to select socks that will keep your feet warm, but also keep moisture out. The last thing you want is wet, cold feet on your long run!
Dress for success. Dress as though it is 15-20 degrees warmer than the temperature outside. At first you may not think you are warm enough, but as your body begins to heat up you will be thankful for the lack of layers. On top of this, make sure that you are wearing a hat and gloves to protect your head and hands from the cold. A general rule is that if it is 30 degrees outside, you should wear one long pair of pants or tights and two layers on top, which could be a long sleeve base layer and a vest or light jacket.
Warm up before going outside. The warm up is even more critical when the weather is cold. Try doing a dynamic warm up inside to get the blood flowing before stepping outside.
Change clothes. Once you are done with your run, change out of your clothes as soon as possible. Standing around in wet clothes will just cause you to get colder because your body temperature starts to drop right after you finish your run.
Take it inside. If all else fails, take it inside to the treadmill. Winter running is meant to be a time for maintenance, not building speed, so a good treadmill workout will do the trick. Also, this is a great time to do a virtual race – keep your mileage up without the pressure.