Five Cold Weather Running Tips

IT’S FRIDAY! That means I’m doing my Five things Friday post! Today, since it’s been the arctic tundra where I live (and most other places in the country), I’m going to give five cold weather running tips! Afterall, we still need to accomplish our runs even in frigid temps! So, here are my top five tips for cold weather running!

1. Layer up!

I’m sure you’ve heard this, but layers really are the key for super cold weather! It’s important to have a good base layer on that is moisture wicking. It can wick the sweat away from your body so that it won’t freeze and make you colder! However, given the cold wind and the likely precipitation in the winter months, it’s also good to have a thick outer layer as well. At minimum, you’ll want a fleece as a top layer. However, that doesn’t block much wind and won’t protect you from getting wet, so it’s better to have a jacket that is wind/water resistant/proof instead. Prices vary based on how extreme you want to get with your jacket. I’d recommend perusing runningwarehouse.com because they give a temperature rating for all their outer layers! I usually wear my Asics Storm Shelter jacket. It’s rated for 30-45 degrees, but with a long-sleeve layer or two underneath, it keeps me nice and toasty in single digit temps and doesn’t let in any wind! As a perk, it’s also highly reflective! IMG_0797[1] 2. Cover as much skin as possible!

Especially when there is a strong wind chill, it’s important to keep your skin covered to prevent frostbite! I usually wear a hat and/or my hood on my jacket to cover up my forehead and ears. I also have a “thermopolis hood” that I wear when it’s super cold! It covers my neck, chin and nose.

3. Apply Vaseline to visible skin

I discovered this tip several years ago during my winter runs. Vaseline provides a handy barrier against the wind (prevents wind-burn), and it also helps insulate you and keep your blood flow going! I usually apply it to my nose and cheeks on cold, windy days! 

4. Run with a buddy

For safety purposes, it’s beneficial to run with a buddy (or buddies) on super cold days. This way, if you get too cold, your buddy can call for help. Also, they might be smarter than you and bring warmer clothes to give you :) I’ve often had to loan my super warm mittens to a running buddy who failed to dress warm enough. :)

5. Run inside!

On days that it’s just too cold to run outside without risking your health, seek shelter indoors! Yesterday morning, it was -4 degrees with a wind chill advisory. Mine and my husband’s jobs were on a 2 hr delay, and all the local schools were canceled. I considered this a sign that it was probably too cold to safely run outdoors. Thankfully, I have a gym membership to a gym that is only 5 minutes from my house, so I conveniently went there to complete my running workout for the day.

A gym membership, or access to a local gym can be VERY valuable for winter running! However, if you don’t have any way to access a gym, and it’s too cold to run outside, you could consider doing a workout in your own home. There are several videos on the internet for some decent cardio workouts. I typically use my go-to T25 dvds!

Do you run outside in the winter?

What are your tips for staying warm?

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