As the days get shorter, colder, and grayer, I love nothing more than fighting the winter blues with running shoes an extra shift and an hour on the trails. I realize that I could be in the minority here. I know it feels like you're kicking your teeth out into the freezing cold air and taking that first step.
As soon as I begin to move, I am routinely reminded that I prefer to drive in the winter. I'm here to gently convince you that winter racing is not as painful as you think, and he gives some suggestions to do it, I may say, it's fun! I have also talked to a few experts who helped to explain why training in cold weather is actually considered an endogenous exercise. With science on our side, there is no reason not to fall in love with running in the cool, fresh air.
Yes, it's actually easier to walk in the cold.
One reason why I prefer to walk in the cold is that it actually feels less tiring on my body. I wanted to find out if there really is a reason why moving in the cold can be beneficial.
"Running in the cold is massively easier for the body," says Dr. Doug Casa, Professor of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. He explains that you need to cool off in warm weather, and the body works to provide blood to the skin surface to prevent overheating. At cooler temperatures, you do not need to sweat much. Therefore, your blood can be spared for the muscles and your heart. The result? You may find that you can achieve a faster pace with the same effort.
"There is a reason why all distance records occur in 45 degree weather," he adds. That makes sense to me. Think of all the iconic marathons that take place in late spring or fall, when the time is usually in the 1940s: New York City, Chicago, and Boston just to name a few.
Kelly Pritchett, Ph.D., RD, CSSD, Professor of Nutrition and Exercise Science agrees and reiterates that we probably feel better when the body does not have to fight the ambient temperature to stay cool. "It's easier for the body to maintain homeostasis in terms of core temperature in a cool environment."
However, it is not but only the weather. How you feel while running and exercising energy also depends on the environment you are used to. "If you live in a hot and humid climate your body will be more efficient in this environment than someone from a cooler climate traveling to the area," explains Pritchett. So, living in a very warm place all year round can make it harder for you to jump into the cold than someone who is more used to cooler temperatures. If you live in Alaska, I'm sure this winter tire is a breeze.
There are some ways that you can make it more bearable and, frankly, fun.
If you are even convinced of it now If you walk through the winter months, you could do it. Here are some tips to help you stay warm, safe and injury free.
. 1 Warm up from the inside.
In cold weather, it takes longer for body temperature to increase and muscles to be warm for maximum performance. In addition, a direct jump in sprints could increase the risk of injury if you are not properly warmed up. When it's really cool, Casa recommends a few minutes on an exercise bike or treadmill before heading out. If you do not have that at home, try Burpees (I know, I know) to do mountaineering, or use a skipping rope to make your blood flow. Heck, you can even walk in place!
Another benefit of warming up inside is that you probably will not wear too many layers when you go into the cold. How many times do you want to take off a jacket after 10 minutes? When you first warm up, avoid bringing more clothes than you normally need.
. 2 Do not worry too much about the speed, distance and any other data that you normally follow in your runs.
Running at cooler temperatures can actually be gentler on the body, and once you're in the extreme, it takes a bit of a toll on the body. Small studies indicate that training in extreme heat or cold (we call it freezing) can play an important role in training performance. In addition, the introduction of snow, ice or light loss will inevitably cause you to pump the breaks a bit. In other words, your data may look different in the winter. For this reason, I suggest taking your trackers and apps for a break rather than adjusting to the numbers.
. 3 Good equipment.
Perhaps the most important thing about winter running is wearing the right clothes to make sure they are warm enough but not overheating.
Here you can find my instructions for keeping warm:
Start with a skin-tight base layer. "The best you can ever do is the initial base shift – as close as possible – that covers your legs, arms, and chest," says Casa. I personally love Oiselle's Wazzie Wool Base Layer which absorbs moisture and has handy thumbholes. If a good base coat is activated, you can add one or two coats depending on the cold. For everything under 30 degrees I throw a long-sleeved tech shirt over my base layer (races often contain them in the admission price!). If it's too cold, snowy or windy, I'll put on a waterproof and windproof jacket. Pro Tip: Target wears the Champion brand, which offers great jacket options at a cheaper price.
Cover as much as possible. Make sure that most of your exposed skin is covered – this includes ankles, necks, fingers, head, toes – where heat can easily be lost. I always wear good socks that cover the space between my heels and the ends of my running pants. I personally love Stance Crew Socks . I also always look for layers with thumbholes to keep my wrists covered, wear smartwool liner gloves, and usually put on a buff to keep my neck and chin covered. I never leave the house without a good running hat. If you have long hair, make sure to buy one with a hole in the back for your ponytail!
Use reflective equipment and a spotlight. In the dark hours of the morning and even darker evenings, you will most likely find yourself running with the sun either up or down. It is important that you wear reflective clothing. When it's extremely dark, always bring a spotlight with you. Many clothing brands wear reflective clothing. I am personally a West fan ; You hardly realize that they are in operation, and that keeps you fully in view!
Invest in weatherproof shoes. In winter, you're likely to face snow a few times on your runs. Weatherproof shoes prevent moisture from entering your toes and ensure that your sneakers will last even in the harsh winter months. I'm wearing Altra Lone Peak Trail Shoes which allow me to walk through muddy puddles and snow-strewn trails. These shoes also prevent me from having an excuse to leave the door. As I like to say: If your clothes can be weatherproof, you can too.
With the right shifts, the right attitude and the right perspective, running in winter can be fun, I promise! I always have to remember that the hardest part is getting out the door. As soon as I begin to move, my body heats up quickly and I remember the reason I fell in love with running: No matter where I am or what season, running conveys a sense of power, freedom and joy