Saturday, August 8, 2015

Running In The Elements - Part 2

A few weeks ago I posted about running in the heat and humidity (since that is what I have been doing for the last three months or so - YUCK!). Anywho, I thought it would be a fun idea to turn the post into a SERIES and have friends and fellow runners guest post about running in other conditions.

Next up, the girl who got me into running in the first place - Megan! We met in college and reconnected a few years later when she introduced me to runDisney. At that time, she challenged me to run my first half marathon (well, challenged me to run PERIOD) and actually ran alongside me during that first race! I am forever grateful for her friendship, even if we don't get to see each other nearly enough - seeing as she lives in the frozen tundra that is Michigan.

And without further ado, some tips from Megan on running in the cold and snow...

Although we don’t like to think about it, winter will eventually return. While this may offer a reprieve for those in the south, the runners that live in the north have to endure a new set of elements – cold and snow. Here are some tips to help you train through those long winter months.

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

Wear layers.

Even though the temperature may be cold, layers are a good idea for when you start to warm up. (It’s true – you do sweat, even in the bitter cold!) This way you can shed a layer, yet still stay warm enough to continue on your way. One key is to keep your core warm with a jacket or vest. For those who have cold, snowy winters – invest in a good running jacket. Not only do you have pockets to stow items, but you also have some protection from rain, wind and snow. The same is true with running tights – get ones that are lined to keep your legs protected and warm. Some even have comfy fleece inside!

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

Along with a jacket and running tights, be sure to wear a hat and gloves. They don’t have to be anything fancy – even the cheap ones will work. By keeping your ears, fingers and even toes warm, you will find that the run in the cold will be more enjoyable. Another great tip is to put hand warmers in your gloves, or even your shoes!

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

Slow down.

The cold temperatures usually bring ice and snow, which can make your run even tougher. Just like in the heat and humidity, be sure to slow down! Make sure that your footing is secure so you don’t risk a slip resulting in injury. One option is Yaktrax for your shoes. These are cleats that go on your shoes, allowing you to grip better in the snow or ice. (They definitely take some getting used to, so it may be worthwhile to see if a friend has a pair you can borrow first.) Believe me, that ice can bring you down in no time!

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

As always, safety should be first. If it is icy or dangerously cold, it would be best to hit the treadmill or indoor track instead.
Stay bright.

Even with a white background from the snow, you need to make sure you are seen on your run! Wear bright colors so that vehicles are able to see you. This is a great excuse to bring out all the neon running clothes you own! Also, the winter means it is darker before and after work, which means you may be running outside with little light. Make SURE you wear bright and reflective clothing or even a headlamp.

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

Just because it is cold and snowy, it doesn’t mean your training needs to come to a halt. Take advantage of the built-in resistance training the snow brings and enjoy the great outdoors!

Source: @Megan_Biller's Instagram Feed

Like I tell MANY people, I don't know that I would have stuck with running had I started in Michigan. It is "EASY" to run in Southern California, but man, those cold-weather runners... THEY ARE HARD CORE! But, as Megan mentioned, the cold or snow doesn't have to stop you! Adjust your plan, make sure you have your gear, and you can still get it done!

And in case you don't follow Megan on social media, I would HIGHLY recommend it. She is da bomb dot com (and I'm not just saying that!). 

And, oh yeah, she is an AUTHOR! So make sure to stay up-to-date on all the going's on of The Runner's Guide To Walt Disney World!

What is your experience with running in the cold or snow? Have you done it? Do you enjoy it?


Zenaida Arroyo said...

I live in Chicago so yes I've run in the snow and in cold weather. I do not like it so don't do it often. I prefer to run on the treadmill if it is below 30 or so degrees.

Scarabocchio Girl said...

Never tried to run in very cold conditions or heavy snow. I see here runners directly on the road in winter, and they run also at -10°C degrees! Maybe I'll try this we always have snowy winters, so it's kind of difficult to run...but thanks Megan for these helpful advices!