I am a cold weather wimp. And this beautiful mild weather in not helping me acclimatize. Running is so much more than a hobby for me but honestly, once the snow flies, I am tempted to either stay snuggled on the couch in from of the TV or to give up and head to a treadmill.
With the cold weather workouts on their way (I know…it sucks but it is totally coming), here are a few ways I have found to combat the cold:
Run with a group
There are times when I get home from work, look out the window and imagine how terrible it will be to try and run fast with cold snowflakes whipping into my face from a blustery winter wind. And I am right. If I wouldn’t have a group of people I run with, I would opt to run indoors or not at all. I also have a running buddy who makes the cold weather less terrible by making it a challenge – we do winter trail runs at night with headlamps. Crazy? Yes. But at least I am not alone.
Getting the Right Winter Wear
Sure, you may feel fine going for a job in leggings and a vest top during the summer months. But during the winter, you’re going to need something a little more substantial to keep the chill at bay. But how do you find the right balance between warmth or protection from the elements and practicality? After all, you don’t want to freeze, but at the same time you don’t want to be burdened and laden down by layers of heavy, thick fabric. You also want to be able to breathe and sweat freely without feeling uncomfortable or burdened. Well, you need to invest in the right winter wear for your exercise regime. Remember that while it may feel cold when you step out of the house, your body will heat up pretty quickly once you get moving. The key to getting the balance right is layers. You can head out warm, then shed them as you heat up. When you take breaks to catch your breath or to call it a day, you can then layer back up to maintain your body heat. It’s a good idea to stock up on the following supplies: running tights or leggings, long sleeve running shirts as a base layer, running gloves, a windproof running jacket, and a headband to cover your ears. You will also want some high quality running shoes. While this is an essential year round (you need something that will support your feet and ankles effectively to prevent injury), the quality of your running shoes becomes particularly poignant in winter. After all, there are more hazards. To avoid slips, trips, and falls on icy or wet floors you will need a certain amount of common sense and shoes with good grip, especially if you live in an area with plenty of hills about. Take a look at the different options available on Running Shoes Guru. Don’t be afraid to look at reviews of different pairs too! This will give you a good idea of how others have found the product you’re interested in.
Hit the Gym
If the weather is particularly bad, but you don’t want to miss your workout, don’t worry. You don’t need to force yourself to get out in gale force winds, hail, heavy rain, or any other form of severe weather. In fact, we would advise that you avoid exposing yourself to dangerous weather conditions at all. The best you will get out of the experience is an uncomfortable and unenjoyable workout, the worst could involve injury or worse. Instead, you can hit the gym. If you think you’ll use other resources in there throughout the winter, such as pools or classes, check out membership plans. If you will only use the gym as a last resort if your usual outdoor exercise regime is cut short, you can usually purchase day passes that allow you in for the occasional one-off workout. Don’t be afraid to ask for a tour of the gym before handing any money over, and once you do get inside, request an induction to ensure that you know how to handle and operate all of the equipment properly and safely.
As you can see, there are a few different ways to ensure that you don’t fall behind on your health and fitness goals. Sure, jogging may be a little more difficult in the winter and require more thought and preparation. But it’s by no means impossible. Sometimes you just need a little push, some new jogging wear and a failsafe place to work out!