Running isn’t exactly fun during the depths of winter. From chapped lips and pink fingers which go from feeling like ice to burning like fire, to slippery streets and spooky dark evenings, this is not the best season to be a runner.
But if you can’t face the treadmill, there’s nothing for it but to brace yourself and take the winter in your stride. Ready to go? These 5 clever hacks will make pounding those pavements much more pleasant.
1. Warm up first
The first five minutes out in the cold are always the worst, but once you’re running you’ll warm up quickly and may in fact find that you’ve overdressed, making the rest of your run uncomfortably warm. To avoid this problem, make sure you warm up before you get dressed and go. Five minutes of squats or “on the spot” exercises should be enough to get your blood pumping.
2. Be reflective
With much less daylight to play with, chances are you’ll be running in the dusk or the dark at this time of year. This is when accidents happen. Make sure you’re wearing bright, reflective clothing or even lights (flashing options are best for helping motorists gauge distance) to prevent problems on the roads.
3. Protect your feet
There’s little more miserable than cold, wet feet on a run. Make sure you invest in decent footwear for your winter sprints. That means waterproof uppers, minimal mesh and waterproof socks!
4. Heat up your hands
Your hands are another area which can be excessively affected by the cold. Gloves, of course, are the answer, but regularly using a good hand moisturiser will help you deal with chapped, cold fingers if you find gloves too uncomfortable. Synthetic gloves are a cheap option, but there are plenty of very good specialised running options available.
5. Take a friend
You may have a tough time encouraging someone to run with you in winter, but if you can find a like-minded soul, running together is a great idea, keeping both of you motivated and ensuring that if somebody slips, there’s help at hand.
Do you go running in winter? Do you have any tips for staying warm, dry and safe?Share your tips with other readers below.