Anna Maria Locke

running in winter


I'm currently up in Michigan for the weekend to visit Ben. His mom lives in an adorable neighborhood built around a bunch of little ponds and wetlands. {Let me just say that while this morning was all blue skies and 40* sunshine, the afternoon brought a random snowstorm and drop in temperature and Winter Wonderland is back. Grrr.}

I'm known among the neighbors as the "girl who runs" because if there is not a foot of snow and ice on the sidewalks, I will probably be spotted outside jogging around the neighborhood whenever I'm visiting. I love running in big loops!

I have a love/hate relationship with winter running. Love because the cold makes me run faster and is invigorating (I DIE when it's hot/sunny out), Hate because cold wind blowing into your face sucks, and so does exercise-induced phlegm and crap that builds up and chokes you. Gross! My perfect running weather is in the 40's and faintly misty or drizzly. However, as long as you are wearing enough clothes it's possible to survive and even sweat when it's as low as 10*F outside (that is the coldest I've run and I probably wouldn't do it again! Ice crystals on eyelashes are fun though).

Cold Weather Running Tips
-Dress in thin layers. If it's around freezing I wear fleece lined tights, a long sleeved tech shirt (love the Mizuno breath thermal line), lightweight hoodie or fleece, and thin windbreaker. Plus gloves and fuzzy earband.
-Experiment with your amount of clothing until you figure out what you need to wear for certain temperatures. You should be chilly for the first 5-10 minutes or so. If you're too warm from the beginning, you are wearing too much!
-Warm up inside. Put on all your layers and do jumping jacks, mountain climbers, lunges, anything to get your heartrate up so you start to get uncomfortably warm and really want to get outside to cool off.
-If it's well below freezing, wrap a thin scarf around your nose to warm the air you're breathing.
-Take it slow and careful around ice or potentially slippery patches.
-Get out in the afternoon or over lunch, when the daylight is brightest and warmest.
-If it's dark out, wear bright reflective gear or a light up vest, and always let someone know where you're going and when you'll be back.
-If there is just NO WAY you are going outside, look up some indoor cardio circuits you can do in your basement or bedroom! Check my Pinterest board for ideas.

Anyone else have tips or motivation for getting outside to exercise in the winter?